Here’s a genius idea to steal from Talbots. A few weeks before Christmas, a Multichannel Merchant staff member received a blank Talbots gift card with an order from the women’s apparel cataloger/retailer. The card could be activated in a Talbots store or over the telephone as a gift for any amount. The staffer put the card away and forgot about it until Dec. 23 — crunch time for Christmas shoppers — when she received an e-mail reminder about it. “Remember the Talbots Gift Card you received in your last order?” the message asked. It explained that to activate the card for a fast, hassle-free gift, all the customer had to do was call the toll-free number or visit a Talbots store. “You choose the amount, they choose the gift, problem solved!” Indeed — where was this option when the rest of us were frantically combing the mall for those final gifts on Dec. 24?