Maybe it’s best not to lean too heavily into the material portion of the holidays, though, because free stuff can be dangerous. It can literally mess with the way you think. This comes from a second study covered by Pacific Standard explaining the “Zero Price Effect,” which basically says that the concept of something being free overrides any qualitative considerations we have about choosing, say, to drink a free cup of coffee from a crappy cafe, or keeping a sweater that’s two sizes too small because it came courtesy of aunt Mabel. I’m not sure if it’s going to work, but this may explain why the NFL is picking up the tab for every player who wants to go see Concussion after it comes out Friday.
Sometimes timing is everything with a gift. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen “Tickle Me Elmo” or “Furby”-level fervor for a single Christmas gift, but there’s something to be said for buying one of the “it” gifts of the season, which in 2015 is either a hoverboard or a drone. On Tuesday night, however, a drone almost ruined professional skier Marcel Hirscher’s holiday season: A 20-pound camera bot came extremely close to crushing him during a slalom run at the Apline Skiing World Cup.
Though it wasn’t a gift, per se, the fact remains; even an extremely cool gift can unintentionally ruin Christmas.
And if you’re reading this and still have gifts to buy before Christmas, than maybe you need to read Lifehacker‘s guide to last-minute gifts you can pick up at the grocery store. You won’t appear thoughtful in the slightest, but, honestly, who really cares? All we really want is free stuff!
Merry Christmas, Internet!