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A Guide To Alternative Gifts

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If the prospect of giving records, candles, or dope to your friends again this Christmas doesn't really appeal to you, here are some ideas that may help you to climb out of the proverbial rut. After all that publicity a few months ago about the energizing power of PYRAMIDS, this was bound to happen: you can now acquire a small device for about 5 bucks that will sharpen your razor blades, freshen your coffee, mellow out your reefer, and make your plants grow better. This pocket-sized gadget will most likely damage your wallet, however, because after using it, you'll want to cop a pyramid shaped tent for $30 that will recharge your energy body when you medítate in it. Inquire at Mayflower Books for the smaller item, and for information on the tent and other producís, write to Pyramid Products, 5010 7th Ave., Kenosha.Wisc. 53140 Step into any bookstore in town and you can find scores of interesting BOOKS on body and mind awareness, vegetarían cooking, photography, art, politics, and a myriad of other topics. If you're into roughing it in the wilds, one good book to look for is the ROBIN HOOD HANDBOOR, a $6 paperback written by Bill Kaysing and distributed by Quick Fox (33 West 60th Street, NY 10023). Dedicated to Ho Chi Minh, this backwoods manual is the perfect companion for city-folk who are planning to become wilderness-folk. While you're at the bookstore, check out the CALENDARS. You can find a calendar for anyone's taste, except someone who doesn't make or keep appointments. One favorite date keeper blends the abstractness of M. C. Escher's ideas with the structure of a calendar. The Escher calendar leads us to the subject of ART. Art prints are always enjoyable and enriching girts. Besides Escher, Maxfield Parrish is another artist whose prints have been arousing interest lately. If you're still at the bookstore, you can cop a Parrish poster-book for 6 bucks that contains 24 prints, all suitable for framing. For the do-ityourself artist, check out British biologist Ensor Holiday's creation, ALTAIR DESIGN. Each print consists of a conglomeration of patterns and designs superimposed on other patterns to form interlaced geometrical shapes. It makes a very creative coloring book. If you're a PLANT enthusiast, ask your fullest Coleus if hesheit would like to dónate some cuttings to a neighbor. Most often the answer is yes, and cuttings usually grow well, so this makes a nice gift. If your Coleus objects to the idea, pop over to one of A2's several plant shops, where you can cop a little green friend for 50tf and up. All plants give off fresh oxygen (get it while you can), and they make a fine addition to anyone's environment. If you're a BOARD GAME freak, you were probably introduced in your younger days to games such as Careers, Risk, Monopoly, or Billionaire, in which the goal is either to conquer the world or get rich quick. Thankfully, these psuedo-success consciousness hypes have given rise to several alternative-type parlor games fo'r youth and hip adults. These are not available at all toy stores, so be sure to cali in advance. One of these games, developed by Psychology II.. . day, BLACKS AND WHITES, is based on ghetto realities. The Whites control the money and power, and the Blacks try to upset the status quo and redistribute the wealth. It's designed to give the players insight into the day-to-day difficulties faced by ghetto residents. ANTI-MONOPOLY is the competition's response to Monopoly. While it is not a slap in the face of capitalism, it is designed to teach the tenets of equitable free enterprise, by breaking up the conglomerates.