Author Topic: Do you call people out on PA comments?  (Read 24340 times)

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Olympia

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #195 on: October 23, 2013, 06:25:54 PM »
But even the "he's a 15yo boy, they like video games / she's a woman right out of college in her first apartment, so she needs kitchen tools" sort of category is going to require you to spend quite a bit more thought and effort than if you say, "tell me what to buy you" and go get that.

I still don't see how that requires any actual thought or effort. Also, you might want to start letting your stereotypes go, because they're not as accurate or useful as your posts indicate.

SlitherHiss

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #196 on: October 23, 2013, 06:26:37 PM »
Or it could be more intimate, since you have spoken to the person, and they have told you how much it would mean to them to have a copy of such and such, or how they really need a teapot in their new apartment. Intimacy does not mean the same thing for everyone.

This.

paperlantern

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #197 on: October 23, 2013, 06:42:46 PM »
I just wanted to point out that some people are just really hard to shop for and it can be a blessing if they point you in a direction. I also think that sometimes part of the reason some people are hard to buy for is because I know them so well.

For example my dad is really hard to buy for, he doesn't have a lot of hobbies, he doesn't like knickknacks  and already has a closet full of clothes and a garage full of tools. It can sometimes be very hard to come up with something because I know these things.

If he wasn't someone close to me I could just go the generic route of gifts like a gift certificate or something edible but I want to get him something he will really like and/or need.   So it is very helpful when he gives me some general ideas. I ask him for ideas because I do care and want to get him something he will like.

anonymousmac

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #198 on: October 23, 2013, 07:16:20 PM »
But I do want to say that I don't believe that everyone who does the "tell me what you'd like, and I'll get it for you" is automatically someone who doesn't care, can't be bothered, etc.

Oh definitely, I agree with you.  I just think that people who go too far to the "just tell me what to get you" extreme are missing the point of gift giving, in my mind.  It can come across as hollow, whether the giver intends it that way or not.

TheWeirdOne

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #199 on: October 23, 2013, 07:25:36 PM »
To offer an alternative perspective on gift giving, let me tell you about my family.

For my immediate family, asking 'what do you want for Christmas/birthday/whatever' (and yes, we do ask it like that and expect to be given a few actual items) is the norm. To us, the meaning behind it isn't I don't want to bother looking for something, but rather You have very specific tastes and I want to get you something that you will actually use/like. So we do specific items.

To me, personally, getting the exact item that I wanted (but never got around to getting, couldn't justify spending money on, etc) means that the gift giver cares enough to not only try and find something that I will like but also to search for that specific item (for example, making a specific trip to get brand X paint that I love but is only sold in the city vs brand Y paint that I don't use but can be purchased anywhere). We are multiple present buyers, so often we will give a much cheaper 'surprise' item so the giftee gets to unwrap something that can be a surprise. We will also come up with present ideas, and run them past the giftee before buying.

I do realise not everyone likes doing it this way, and adjust my expectations and buying practices accordingly, but considering the current turn of conversation, I thought it might be interesting to offer a different perspective.

TootsNYC

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #200 on: October 23, 2013, 07:49:42 PM »
I love all the different perspectives!

It might be fun to focus on those instead of focusing on my son's particular view of present giving inside his own family.

I like your family's approach! It seems particularly useful when the situation is what paperlantern describes (which I think is a very common problem for gift givers):
Quote
If he wasn't someone close to me I could just go the generic route of gifts like a gift certificate or something edible but I want to get him something he will really like and/or need.   So it is very helpful when he gives me some general ideas. I ask him for ideas because I do care and want to get him something he will like.

baglady

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #201 on: October 23, 2013, 08:26:16 PM »
This is why gifting is such a minefield. If you don't ask what someone would like, you run the risk of getting them something inappropriate based on a vague knowledge of their interests. I love to read, and I love the ocean, but a book about the ocean would not interest me. I'd rather read true crime stories and go play in the ocean! Not that I wouldn't accept that ocean book graciously.

If you ask, you run the risk of being castigated as someone who "doesn't caaare! Because if she really knew me/cared about me, she would know what I want!" But sorry, Charlie, Aunt Baglady only sees you twice a year and is still working on that mental telepathy thing. (I am generalizing here, not insinuating that any PP's or their loved ones would actually react this way).

I suppose one solution would be to ask a relative what the person might like instead of approaching him/her directly. "She's really into Barbies, so she would love Barbie clothes." "We're getting him a Kindle, so he'd love an Amazon gift card so he can buy a book or two for it."
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dawbs

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #202 on: October 23, 2013, 09:33:41 PM »
*snip*

I suppose one solution would be to ask a relative what the person might like instead of approaching him/her directly. "She's really into Barbies, so she would love Barbie clothes." "We're getting him a Kindle, so he'd love an Amazon gift card so he can buy a book or two for it."

And that can backfire horribly if the relative gets off in the wrong direction.
They pick something think will be awesome--like say "hmm, Dawbs is techy and likes books, lets get her a kindle!".  Then they pass that information on to everyone--so from one relative I get an extra amazon card, from another a charge kit for the kindle from another, from another a kindle cover, from another, kindle subscriptions to several magazines.  Which, if I want a kindle, is an awesome gift--or, more appropriately 5 awesome gifts
And if I already have an ipad I use as a readerand have no desire to own a kindle and am ethicly opposed to amazon's business practices (not the case, just going out there :), then the relative has just hijacked all of the gifts into the wrong direction.

TheWeirdOne

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #203 on: October 23, 2013, 10:17:18 PM »
I think as a giftee we should always try and look at the positive, and also the type of relationship you have with the gifter.

Case in point: My boyfriend's mother went on an overseas holiday and brought back a load of presents for various people. Mine was so awful and 'not me' that she couldn't have picked a less appropriate present if she had tried (My tastes are more in the antiquey, slightly gothic Victorian style. This item was hot pink animal print. I don't like pink and she knows it).
Rather than be disappointed that she had just picked something for me at random (possibly with her eyes closed ;D), I chose to appreciate that she had, on her wonderful action packed holiday, taken the time to think of me at all.

Then again, I have had my mother buy me a cookbook for a gift giving occasion after I specifically asked her not to buy it. She insisted that she had to get me something, but the message I got from that gift was 'I don't care or listen to what you say'. So I can understand the feeling that some people may experience from getting an inappropriate gift.

ETA: I did of course thank both of them.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2013, 10:21:21 PM by TheWeirdOne »

baglady

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #204 on: October 23, 2013, 10:20:07 PM »
*snip*

I suppose one solution would be to ask a relative what the person might like instead of approaching him/her directly. "She's really into Barbies, so she would love Barbie clothes." "We're getting him a Kindle, so he'd love an Amazon gift card so he can buy a book or two for it."

And that can backfire horribly if the relative gets off in the wrong direction.
They pick something think will be awesome--like say "hmm, Dawbs is techy and likes books, lets get her a kindle!".  Then they pass that information on to everyone--so from one relative I get an extra amazon card, from another a charge kit for the kindle from another, from another a kindle cover, from another, kindle subscriptions to several magazines.  Which, if I want a kindle, is an awesome gift--or, more appropriately 5 awesome gifts
And if I already have an ipad I use as a readerand have no desire to own a kindle and am ethicly opposed to amazon's business practices (not the case, just going out there :), then the relative has just hijacked all of the gifts into the wrong direction.

But my hypothetical point was that the recipient already *has* or is getting a Kindle from his/her nearest and dearest, who have told relatives that Kindle stuff would be a good add-on gift. I'm thinking in terms of the relatives consulted giving specifics ("She would like Amazon gift cards/Kindle accessories/Barbie clothes"), not "she likes reading/she likes electronics." And that if the Kindle is a gift-to-be, the relative giving it already knows that the recipient wants one and will welcome add-ons.

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dawbs

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #205 on: October 23, 2013, 10:25:36 PM »
*snip*

I suppose one solution would be to ask a relative what the person might like instead of approaching him/her directly. "She's really into Barbies, so she would love Barbie clothes." "We're getting him a Kindle, so he'd love an Amazon gift card so he can buy a book or two for it."

And that can backfire horribly if the relative gets off in the wrong direction.
They pick something think will be awesome--like say "hmm, Dawbs is techy and likes books, lets get her a kindle!".  Then they pass that information on to everyone--so from one relative I get an extra amazon card, from another a charge kit for the kindle from another, from another a kindle cover, from another, kindle subscriptions to several magazines.  Which, if I want a kindle, is an awesome gift--or, more appropriately 5 awesome gifts
And if I already have an ipad I use as a readerand have no desire to own a kindle and am ethicly opposed to amazon's business practices (not the case, just going out there :), then the relative has just hijacked all of the gifts into the wrong direction.

But my hypothetical point was that the recipient already *has* or is getting a Kindle from his/her nearest and dearest, who have told relatives that Kindle stuff would be a good add-on gift. I'm thinking in terms of the relatives consulted giving specifics ("She would like Amazon gift cards/Kindle accessories/Barbie clothes"), not "she likes reading/she likes electronics." And that if the Kindle is a gift-to-be, the relative giving it already knows that the recipient wants one and will welcome add-ons.

I'm confused--isn't it just as likely in the hypothetical that the recipient is being given a kindle--and that they DON"T want one?
Yours works under the assumption that her nearest and dearest gift giving relatives guess or know well what she wants.
Mine works under the assumption that it's quite possible for otherwise awesome people to THINK they know what someone wants, and that they think they know they'll welcoe add-ons...but really, they could be wrong

AnnaJ

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #206 on: October 24, 2013, 12:28:08 AM »
I am generally pretty good as a gift giver, but I will also ask what people want if I'm not sure.  To be honest, I have no desire to waste money on a sweater someone will never wear, or a book they don't want, or a pair of earrings that aren't their style, or an electronic gadget similar to other things they own.  I've  gotten gifts like this and it's makes me a bit crazy in the past - now I just shrug and donate it to a charity thrift store...but that doesn't mean I want to spend money on things that other people will either toss or put in the back of the closet.

MariaE

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #207 on: October 24, 2013, 12:46:39 AM »
To offer an alternative perspective on gift giving, let me tell you about my family.

For my immediate family, asking 'what do you want for Christmas/birthday/whatever' (and yes, we do ask it like that and expect to be given a few actual items) is the norm. To us, the meaning behind it isn't I don't want to bother looking for something, but rather You have very specific tastes and I want to get you something that you will actually use/like. So we do specific items.

TWO, we do it the same way in my family. Well, sort of - my BIL made an online wishlist site for us, so that's what we use. Some people have very specific items, other people have stuff like "A good book". Nobody minds if others go offlist, but the lists serve as a starting point. So it can be used as "a shopping list" (although I hate calling it that, because it takes away the graciousness of gift-giving which is still there) for those of us who need that, or it can be used as inspiration for those who prefer to go offlist.
 
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Teenyweeny

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #208 on: October 24, 2013, 05:12:26 AM »
I actually completely understand Toots' point.

I hate when I specify a gift for somebody and they buy me exactly that. It just feels like they are buying me a gift out of obligation. "Hey, it's a gift-giving occasion! So I have to give a gift. Here is your gift. Problem solved."

Honestly, I'd rather that they got me nothing. I have money. If there's a specific item I want, I'll buy it (and if it's too expensive for me, I'd never request it from somebody else). Gifts are about something else; something more than the item.

I actually don't mind the surprise being spoilt. So if someone were to ring me and say, "Hey, I was going to get you a Jimmy Stewart dvd for your birthday. Which ones do you already have?" I'd be touched that they remembered that I love Jimmy Stewart, and I wouldn't care about knowing about the gift ahead of time. I'll even say to somebody (if asked), "I really like Jimmy Stewart, so any of his films (apart from X, Y and Z) would be great".

If I have to say "I want a copy of 'Rear Window'", and that's what I get, where's the joy in that? 



MariaE

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Re: Do you call people out on PA comments?
« Reply #209 on: October 24, 2013, 05:21:00 AM »
I'll even say to somebody (if asked), "I really like Jimmy Stewart, so any of his films (apart from X, Y and Z) would be great".

If I have to say "I want a copy of 'Rear Window'", and that's what I get, where's the joy in that?

I actually agree with this. My original argument was because I thought Toots' son (which is where this all started :) ) minded the former. I completely understand him minding the latter. I would too - despite my gift-giving difficulties.

I wouldn't mind saying "I'd like this or this dvd or this or this book or this or this yarn or..." - giving a list of options rather than one set request.
 
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