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No hero that's understood
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6,100 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is it just me or has gift giving changed? I've always liked to give gifts to those I care about for special occasions. I put a lot of thought into it, spend time shopping and try to buy the perfect thing. It seems to be a way for me to say, I care about you and I've given this my full consideration. I'm at a stage in my life that I really don't want or need anything (reasonably priced that one would expect to receive as a gift). That doesn't mean that a well thought out gift is not appreciated and enjoyed. Like many of you, I have some specific hobbies and interest which require specialized things that are highly specific to my tastes. For instance, I really only like one kind of golf ball. I don't feel like asking me what kind I like and then buying it for me is a gift because that requires no effort by the giver and is not personal in any way.

Having a child makes it worse. All we do is send lists to relatives who in turn buy things off that list and then provide us with a list of things the members of their family's want. I don't think this is really in the spirit of gift giving. I have suggested exchanging net checks at the beginning of the year and just pretending that the item was from a relative. No one likes this idea.

Additionally, it now appears that every Hallmark Holiday or social event has a gift component to it. Recently, my wife and I co-hosted a party. (It was at someone elses house, but we provided the drinks and the food). The next day when my wife went to collect some of the things that we left at our friends house, she also came home with a bag of presents. I said what's all that for. She said these are gifts for the host. I was really surprised that this is now an obligation.

I don't know, is it just me or has gift giving lost its luster and become an obligation rather than a thoughtful expression?

PS - I realize this poast is rife with code related to giving and balls.
 

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Sticky Valentine
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28,404 Posts
Gift cards are my new gift of choice.

I know they're rather thoughtless and not personal. But I'd rather be given a gift card to buy something I want than to be given something I'm probably going to throw away after a couple of months.


joe
 

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Failboat Captian
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6,527 Posts
I burned out on giving gifts. For one reason, I have kids, as does my sister, my SIL and my BIL. Even my FIL has a 10 year old. On top of that, I used to get into the hunt for a good gift and always thought I was getting something really personal and special for the recipient, but it would turn out they already had it or didn't like it or whatever. They always were appreciative and thankful, but afterwards I'd find out that I went through all that effort for nothing. So now it's gift cards.
 

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No hero that's understood
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6,100 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
JoeDaddio said:
Gift cards are my new gift of choice.

I know they're rather thoughtless and not personal. But I'd rather be given a gift card to buy something I want than to be given something I'm probably going to throw away after a couple of months.


joe
See I'd prefer something that some one thought I would like. Something they put some effort into and wanted me to like.

We got into this thing with my dad and his wife.

My wife's birthday is first, so they would give her a gift card, then next is my birthday where they would give me a gift card in the same amount. We then reciprocated on their birthdays by giving them gift cards in the same amount. Last year I called them up and said this is foolish. Why don't we just keep our own money and just exchange cards.
 

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Proud luddite
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7,223 Posts
I agree with you. Gift giving just ain't what it used to be. Less thought put into it and the ever-growing obligation to give a gift when one really isn't necessary. "Oh, your co-worker's cousin's stepmother is having surgery? Well then let's get her a chia pet." I can't stand it. And what about Easter??? When the hell did Easter become a gift-giving holiday??? I'm coloring eggs but that's it, mister! And I mean business!
 

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Seat's not level
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19,372 Posts
My wifes birthday was last week. I'm getting her a couple Camelbak Podium insulated bottles.
 

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Shirtcocker
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60,639 Posts
Personally, I hope the gift-giving tradition does die. There are way too many occasions now where gifts are expected.
 

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Seat's not level
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19,372 Posts
asciibaron said:
i give no gifts. i don't care to know anyone well enough to know what they need.
I thought it was because you were banned from all stores...

unlrelated...
A husband and wife are shopping in their local Wal-Mart.
The husband picks up a case of Budweiser and puts it in their cart.
'What do you think you're doing?' asks the wife.
'They're on sale, only $10 for 24 cans he replies.
'Put them back, we can't afford them demands the wife, and so they carry on shopping.
A few aisles further on along the woman picks up a $20 jar of face cream and puts it in the basket.
What do you think you're doing?' asks the husband.
'It’s my face cream. It makes me look beautiful,' replies the wife.
Her husband retorts: 'So does 24 cans of Budweiser and it's half the price.'


On the PA system: 'Cleanup on aisle 25, we have a husband down.'
 

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Zaphod Beeblebrox
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2,799 Posts
I hate buying, giving and receiving gifts. We've opted out of the gift exchange at Christmas the past few years. Why would I want to waste my time going out to buy someone a gift card only to get one back. I could have saved myself an extra trip and just gone to the store of my choosing and bought what I needed.

As far as kids go, have you been to the toy section of any department store lately. All the creativity has been removed from toys. Everything is related to whatever big movie is in the theater or is very cheaply made (usually both). I ended up buying a handful of good quality kites for $15 a piece to give away for birthday gifts. Sure, it's not particularly creative but it gets kids and parents outside for something interactive.
 

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Shirtcocker
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60,639 Posts
My wife and I stopped giving each other gifts years ago. If we want something for ourselves we just buy it.
 

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Just Plain Bitter
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Bocephus Jones II said:
Personally, I hope the gift-giving tradition does die. There are way too many occasions now where gifts are expected.
The only person I really try for is my SO at this point. Kids just want clothes and concert tickets which I buy all year long anyway. SO on the other hand appreciates the thought process I put in to it.
 

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Zaphod Beeblebrox
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2,799 Posts
Addendum:

This year for Christmas we'll be giving out (home) canned food goods, mostly jams and jelly but will probably include salsa and other more or less condiments that we made ourselves. They look great and the jars can be dressed up with some nice ribbon or fabric, cost us next to nothing, and (I hope) are appreciated more than a gift card. I've been making 3-4 times more jam than we can possibly consume in anticipation and since I'm already doing the work processing a few more jars isn't much sacrafice.
 

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Shirtcocker
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rward325 said:
The only person I really try for is my SO at this point. Kids just want clothes and concert tickets which I buy all year long anyway. SO on the other hand appreciates the thought process I put in to it.
The biggest scam is other kids' birthday parties. Your kids get invited to a ton of these throughout the year and you always have to bring a gift. I can't tell you how many cheap toys and target giftcards I've bought over the years.
 

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No hero that's understood
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6,100 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Bocephus Jones II said:
The biggest scam is other kids' birthday parties. Your kids get invited to a ton of these throughout the year and you always have to bring a gift. I can't tell you how many cheap toys and target giftcards I've bought over the years.
Your kid also gets a "goodie bag" filled with krap that gets broken on the way home and winds up on the floor of your car. A good friend of my refers to this as the "landfill" party. I have an only child so trust me when I say he has everything there is to have. One year I tried to have a No present party (no presents for my kid, no goodie bag for your kid). My wife was smart enough not to trust that this would work and unbeknown to me assembled the goodie bags for the kids and hid them in the closet. Much to my horror, every child brought a gift. My wife coolly pulled the goodie bags from the closet and handed them out to the guests.

We've also had book only parties. This was better.
 
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