Annie Barrett
January 11, 2007 at 12:00 PM EST

Yep, 3 percent. I know ’cause I did the math. After the IRS (and Edward Norton) badgered the Academy into scrapping gift bags altogether last month, the Golden Globes have followed suit. Not that they’ve given up the swag, but they’ve made it 97 percent less fabulous. Guess the Hollywood Foreign Press Association thinks celebrities won’t worry about the tax implications of swag bags worth just $600, as opposed to $20,000 for last year’s cornucopia of freebies.

I’ll say it. I loathe awards show gift bags. They’re completely pointless to everyone in the world except the high-end, obsequious companies giving their stuff away and the already rich-ass celebs who’re on the receiving end. I’m not jealous; I’m just not impressed by what’s basically a jam-packed commercial break in a box. Magazine articles and blog posts like “What’s in the goodie bag this year?!?!” must be avoided en masse each winter. Are you kidding? Who cares? I don’t need to SEE that!

I know, I know, I need to relax. Gift bags are harmless. But whenyou think about this bag so huge a celeb can’t even carry it (becauseit’d totally hide her clutch, and because hello, she has threeassistants for that), as opposed to $20,000 in hundreds that could be easilybe scattered among poor people… well, I guess the lesson is don’tthink about it, and dammit, Annie, get with theblind-submission-to-Hollywood program already!

In that case, this new austerity is blasphemy! How will the starsknow how awesome they are? Fortunately, they’ll be peering at theirwoven-hemp satchels of “swag” through Designer Imposter shades, somaybe they’ll seem worth much more. Not to mention: booze. It sure willhelp.

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