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Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Christmas Gift Returning Bandito...

Let me first say that I am a very grateful and gracious person, not to mention humble...OK, I fail at all of those often, but I do have a big ol' soft spot; presents.

I enjoy getting them, and I truly do appreciate the effort that one goes through. You have to decide what to give (which is the hardest part for me), you have to buy it, then wrap or ship it and wait to hear the reaction (my second hardest part of the gift-giving experience).

This empathy may go to far though based on what I know about retail. January is a great sales month for stores.

Know why? People return items and then add in some "Grandma Money" and buy what they really wanted. Add this to the grundle of broken things that aren't directly replaced and you probably have 10% (a number completely pulled out of my mistletoe) of gifts that don't stick.

Confession time: I can't do it...I feel too bad to return something. I think the only time I have returned something is when it was broken and I actually liked it. I was the only one excited to get the same item back from customer service!

I am normally a very practical person. I have no problem when someone returns something I gave them. I want them to enjoy their gift. My wife and daughters have no issue returning anything. Their dying great-grand Uncle could have bought them a gift, told them the meticulous planning that went into getting it, and then the next day they will be in line ready to exchange it for a Narato backpack. Well ,at least my daughter would.

I really think it is Rankin-Bass' fault. Who are they? All of those Christmas shows that are playing right now with the faux 3D people...You know, "Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer"...

Anyway Rudolph and this wannabe Dentist Elf go on an adventure (you would have to see it, that made it sound like a Tarantino movie) and they find the Land of the Forgotten Toys. Toys no one wanted...totally depressing. Kids in third world countries asking for bread and kids just dumped these poor toys. Sure the Elephant has a Pirate Hook and lead paint, but come on, cut him some slack...But I digress...

For me it really is the thought that counts. It may mean that I won't get the Super Death Star I wanted, but at least my Light-up Reindeer tie won't get deported to that horrible island and I won't feel like the guy in the picture...


Mrs. Micah said...

I understand the feeling. Sometimes if it's completely unusable I can feel good about it. But otherwise I just cut my losses and use it.

The hardest gifts to handle are from my creative grandmother who thinks that she can find great presents at yardsales and such. I'm sure she has a lot of fun yardsaling, and I'm happy for her. But I don't think I've ever used a single thing she's gotten me. There's a soup tureen that I'm holding onto. Maybe someday I can use it. Otherwise I hold onto the items for an obligatory year or two and discard them to make room for new junk.

One qualification...for our wedding she bought us a silverware set, which is so useful! While she was bargain shopping and it wasn't the one on our registry (I'm not too attached to silverware, but some looks are a little crazy so I decided to register), she called us to make sure we'd like it. So I looked up the pattern and it wasn't crazy and we said it'd be great, thanks!


RacerX said...

It's funny though..It will be those funny things that happen to help remember them when they are gone.

But you are right, these are some of the things that go first when we are clutter clearing.

Fiscal Musings said...

I usually try to find some use for everything that I get. I don't feel bad about returning clothes though, especially if it's the wrong size.

RacerX said...

I would probably return wrong sizes as well. But I would get the same item!

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