Andrew Hawker offers an elegant solution to festive problems: 'Christmas should be held on a randomly chosen date each year, to be announced a week before the event. This would torpedo the endless campaigns of stores and catalogue merchants, foreshorten family squabbles about who is going where at Christmas, and make it more difficult for the Sun to leak the Queen's broadcast. People with a birthday on 25 December could also enjoy it once in a while.'
Stuart Cockerill has found two ways to enjoy Christmas: 'annoy friends by reneging on the deal not to send each other cards this year' and 'knock on neighbours' doors to point out that the electricity used by their Christmas tree lights is directly responsible for the acid rain that is depleting the Scandinavian conifer population'.
Philip Cresswell suggests selling Christmas to Euro Disney. 'It is exactly the sort of thing they like, and we've all seen them pay silly money for much less.' As a premium brand name, he believes that Christmas 'will look very good on balance sheets and be the sort of deal the major banks will fall over themselves to get involved with'. Or was that what George Napier meant by selling it to a pagan religion?
Some brilliant ideas to solve the problem of Christmas gifts have come from Paul and Steph (whose typing and signatures, incidentally, look so similar to those of Steph and Paul who wrote in last week, that we are seriously beginning to wonder whether there really are four of you, and which it is who does the thinking): 'Send a Christmas present token,' they advise. 'Recipients simply use these as presents the following year, thus solving a gift problem of their own. Eventually there will be as many tokens in circulation as there are presents required.'
Alternatively, they recommend sending gift-wrapped sets of 20 Christmas cards, stamped and addressed to the gift-sender. Two decades of card selection and address-hunting are thus abolished.
Of the rest of the shopping lists, we liked best Mollie Caird's suggestion of 'a bumper bag of all those erstwhile useless objects that Creativity readers have show us are multifariously useful'. But remember, a Yorkshire terrier is not just for Christmas.
And to the lady who suggested, for the woman who has everything: 'my husband (that'll teach her)' and for the man who has everything: 'me (that'll teach him)'. May we remind you that the man who has everything is, by definition, already married.
Next week we shall tell you what to do with a telephone. Meanwhile, our lines are open for creative uses for an out-of-day telephone directory. All ideas to: Creativity, The Independent, 40 City Road, London EC1Y 2DB.Reuse content