Friday, August 21, 2009

So what is the proper protocol surrounding gift giving? Do you give the person the gift you think they should have, or do you get them what they've been saying they want? If you get them what you think they should have, they may be thoroughly surprised that you went the extra mile to think for them, and it may lead to brownie points later (when its time for you to receive a gift). But if they DON'T like it, the first thing out of their mouth is, "I told you I wanted blah blah blah". On the flip side, if you get the person exactly what they ask for, they are guaranteed happiness and all that, but there's no surprise element, and in some ways, you are only following an order, which takes zero imagination.

I ask this question because I got my father season one of Mad Men for his birthday, and when we talked about it he seemed happy. The same person who wrote the last few seasons of the Sopranos,, and I knew my father loved the Sopranos, so I figured it was a win-win situation. He sounded happy when we talked, and he said he'd dive right into the show next week. But in the back of my mind I know he really wanted this San Diego Chargers jersey. I wonder if he's telling his friends and his lady, "Yeah I got a gift, but where the f**k is my damn jersey?" Fathers can never talk to their sons like that I suppose, but that doesn't mean he's not thinking it you know? And yes I know someone is reading this saying, "Why didn't you just get both?" My brother was originally supposed to get it, and then he decided to also get my father what he wanted..and once again, my father said he was happy..but I'm not sure.

So the solution will be for us to buy him this jersey during a non-birthday in the next two weeks. Still, for people who do NOT deserve two gifts, my original question remains. Get what they ask for or get what you think they want?

Oh and by the way, I didn't work out AT ALL on vacation, but I ate intelligently, so the damage was minimal.


£ said...

yay! you're back! the bloggerverse was a dried old prune without your pithy expressions. glad you had a safe trip. btw I didn't read nary a word of what you wrote. I gotta get some work done and then i'll be back to read and comment forreal. lol

Janelle said...

I like to receive gifts that people have put some thought into. Like it may not be something I knew I wanted but clearly the giver thought about who I am as a person and gave me something that is an expression of me. For instance, a friend of mine gave me the Sex and the City Carrie Martini glass. This person knows I love that show, knows that I write, and knows that I love a great flavored martini. However, as someone who has received more craptastic gifts than I care to remember, I wish the people around me would just ask what do I want if they're not going to put forth any effort in thinking. If you pointed out to your dad that the writing team on Mad Men is the same as the Sopranos, he may enjoy it. If not, tell him to pass it to me. LOL

Get him the jersey for Christmas. That way he'll still get what he wants but not when he expected it - another great element of gift giving.