With the holiday shopping season in full swing now, I’d like to proffer a suggestion to all you holiday shoppers (esp. those of you who are of the semi-lazy variety) who are having problems figuring out what to purchase for your various friends, family, colleagues, etc. It’s an idea that will not only save you time but actually also contribute exponentially to the Asian American arts.
Buy in bulk.
Yes, we’re all familiar with the general idea, especially those of us who are frugal, thrifty, cheap (whatever you want to call it). You make the semi-weekly runs to Costco or Sam’s Club or whichever massive warehouse store is in your geographical area, and you purchase a buttload of the same item at the same time (usually at only a small discount if you do the actual math).
Here’s what I’m suggesting: let’s say you’re a fan of an independent movie like CHILDREN OF INVENTION or FINISHING THE GAME (full disclosure: yes, I have relationships with the filmmakers of the former and was, in fact, the production accountant of the latter). This holiday season, go online and order ten or twenty copies of the movie and use them as gifts.
Not only will you save yourself a ton of time and agony trying to figure out what the hell to give to your old roommate, your cousin who you see once a year, a neighbor who stops by and surprises you with a gift (for which you are socially obligated to give something back to), but you will really be making a difference for independent artists (you can obviously apply this idea to books or CDs as well). Because, see, ten or twenty copies may not mean jacksquat to a studio movie that is expected to move hundreds of thousands of copies a week, but for small independents, these quantities can easily add up to something significant that the filmmakers and their respective distributors might actually feel (let’s say that just ten people follow up on this advice; that could be anywhere between 100-200 DVDs sold within a week – no small chump change for a tiny independent).