In Japan, a popular souvenir is mimikaki (耳かき) - a pick for cleaning the ears. They often come in decorative packaging, and have little trinkets dangling from the handle (e.g. a tiny wooden shoe). My understanding is that people buy them to give to their relatives.
My question is: is this a serious gift, or is it supposed to be funny? And is it common to give them to friends and teachers too?