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What NOT to buy your favorite nurse for the holidays

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Corbis Photography | Veer


1. Yet another angel-with-a-stethoscope figurine.

Seriously, I already have at least half a dozen angels in various poses, all holding medical impedimenta. I don’t need another, nor does anybody else. That goes double for angels-with-stethoscopes that light up, play music, turn in circles or do all three.

Get me one of those talking fish on a plaque instead.

2. Cheetah-print silky rayon scrubs.

Yes, these exist, along with capri-length scrub pants. Unless your friend specifically requests a certain type of scrubs, it’s never a good idea to buy them for someone else, as most nurses work at places with dress codes. Save your money or get your favorite RN a gift certificate for a nearby scrubs shop.

3. Beef Stew for the Nurse’s Soul, Inspiring Stories of RNs Who’ve Had Their Feet Replaced or any other book of that ilk.

Surely the nurse you know and love has a hobby or two, right? Something that she or he does outside of working eight- or 12-hour shifts? Concentrate on that.

4. A year’s subscription to the Donut-of-the-Month club.

Most of us see enough donuts at work, thanks.

5. Cutesy nursing T-shirts, shopping bags or caps.

I don’t want anybody to be able to identify me unless I’m wearing scrubs and a name tag. I’ve got enough people coming up to me in public wanting to share some crazy, and I’m all stocked up already.

Oh, and if you give me a tote bag that advertises what I do for a living (how come they don’t make cute CPA T-shirts or cute animal-control officer T-shirts?), I will use it to store all my cute light-up-angel musical figurines.


So…what DON’T you want for the holidays?

Agatha Lellis
Agatha Lellis is a nurse whose coffee is brought to her every morning by a chipmunk. Bluebirds help her to dress, and small woodland creatures sing her to sleep each night. She writes a monthly advice column, "Ask Aunt Agatha," here on Scrubs; you can send her questions to be answered at askauntieaggie@gmail.com.

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