Gift Giving Dilemas


I must admit, I like getting surprise gifts. I don’t want to know what is under the wrapping.  I want to experience that feeling of discovery.  However, there are two things that go with this.  The first is that this only works when the person buying the gift knows you well enough to do that.  Often people buy what they would like, but which you may completely hate.  Yes, a gift is a gift, but having to fake that you like something that you absolutely don’t, is horrible.  I do it, I am just not sure I do it convincingly.

I am a big believer is giving people clear ideas of what I like and what I want. I don’t find this particularly hard at all.  I have several wish lists on Amazon, I have a folder full of stuff I have clipped out of the weekly flyers.  If you ask me what I want, I can (and usually do) supply people with a list.

I seem to be the only one because when I ask people what they would like for Christmas or their birthday or some other gift giving occasion, they draw a blank? They say things like “I don’t know?” or “I can’t think of anything” or they just shrug their shoulders, which is hard to do in an email, but somehow they manage.

Didn’t we all do brainstorming in school? You throw out a whole bunch of ideas without worrying about whether they are good or bad and then you weed out the list.  I start with my hobbies, move to clothes, then think about my car and my house…then sometimes my job.  I usually end up with a long list.  I then weed out the expensive ones that I wouldn’t expect anyone to be able to purchase for me, and then try to group them for an email.

Seems pretty easy to me.

I guess, to be fare, I should consider that it isn’t easy. The thing is, when people are out shopping, they can usually find cool things.  When you ask what they would buy themselves if they had money, they can usually think of things–the problem is that they amount people use in that question (like a million dollars) is probably way beyond the birthday or Christmas budget.

By the way, I am not trying to slight any other religious or non-religious events, I just don’t know the gift giving protocol and I don’t want to make a mistake.


When I was a kid I went through the Sears Christmas Wishbook or The Canadian Tire catalogue and boom–I was ready for Santa. When my birthday rolled around…whatever I didn’t get for Christmas, plus the newest thoughts went on that list.

Maybe the worst thing about this is spending a lot of time putting a list together and then not getting something from that list. That would be rather annoying.

About Anthony

I am: equal parts rebel, romantic and shockingly average Joe. a writer trapped inside of an ESL teacher's body. an introverted attention seeker. a teacher who hopes one day to be called "Captain, my Captain." an intellectual who can do some very dumb things. a person whose Japan experience, despite being so long ago, still exerts a strong influence upon him. a lover of books, music, beer, hockey and Pizza.
This entry was posted in Aspirations, Reflections, Perfection, brainstorming, catalogue, gifts, giving, imagination and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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