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Jun 20, 2021 - 4:57:47 PM
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2286 posts since 6/19/2014

I absolutely HATE receiving gifts. People think they're being nice, when what they are actually doing is imposing a burden on the recipient. First off, you have to smile and thank the giver, sometimes profusely, showing a gratitude you almost never feel. It's a lie, and I have a hard time lying. Then you have to have a place to store the unwanted item, not forgetting where it is, so that you can bring it out whenever the gift giver comes to visit. Sometimes the thing comes with a gift receipt, indicating that the giver will be ok if you decide to exchange it, but then you have to make a trip to the store you weren't planning to have, you have to stand in line to give it back, then you have to spend more time going through the store to look for something of equal value you might actually like. Often this is not possible, and so I just end up exchanging one thing I don't want for another I also could do without. And of course, you have to keep thanking them for this misery each time the occasion is brought up in conversation. Worst of all is the gift that requires assembly or installation. This is work, folks, and work is NOT a gift.

There is absolutely nothing I want that I can't get for myself. There's only three things I will accept as gifts: cash, being taken out for a meal, and a third thing only my wife can supply and which cannot be mentioned in a family forum. This father's day I got lucky. Three of the children live in other cities, and had to be content with phone calls, and the one who lives here teamed up with her mother to buy a mess of Chinese food for dinner. Now if I can only get through my next birthday . . .

Jun 20, 2021 - 5:43:48 PM

Brian T

Canada

18357 posts since 6/5/2008

Life is all too short and it's unpredictable.
Because it is both, I'll be grateful for any attention, however delivered.
I will be 2 years old on August 21. It has changed my attitude.

It's age. Desires change. My real wants are no longer material. That's a slight surprise.
It's people and connections and accomplishments. The nuts and bolts and wrenches are no longer relevant.

My kids all called. I had told them I need nothing for Father's Day, that my house is totally full of stuff. Drives my housekeeper nuts.
My D1 ignored that. She sent money with instructions to fill my face with take away Chinese food. She knows how much I like left overs. Hell of a thing now to decide what to order.

A genuine Happy Father's Day ( or Summer Solstice) to you all.

Jun 20, 2021 - 7:05:06 PM
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Owen

Canada

8976 posts since 6/5/2011

Of course it's "to each his own," but your "have to's" are much different than mine, Lefty.    I thank the giver, but I don't "have to" smile, or make the thanks "profuse,"  or find a storage place, or get a gift out when the giver visits, or make a special trip to the store, or stand in line to exchange it, or thank the giver on subsequent occasions.  Where did I go wrong?

Not getting gifts suits me just fine, but nowadays more often than not it involves edibles, sometimes directly sometimes as a restaurant gift card, so, although the burden is great, I manage.  wink

Jun 20, 2021 - 7:26 PM
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98 posts since 2/11/2019

Dang. In my circle of family and friends people either come right out and ask me what I would like for birthday, Christmas, Father's Day, Anniversary, etc. or they get me a nice bottle of bourbon. Either way it's always a good thing!

Jun 21, 2021 - 1:04:40 AM

Paul R

Canada

14694 posts since 1/28/2010

I'm with you, Lefty, but for different reasons. I don't need anything (and anything I want would break the bank, so I don't dwell on it). I have a standing order that I don't get gifts. and that order has been obeyed. (It's just the wife and daughter*, anyway.) On the other hand, I like giving, and if it can be something imaginative, so much the better. Or, if I know it's something the Mrs. would like, finding a way to disguise it until the last minute. (I put a box of Turtles in the china cabinet beside some turtle carvings. I left a note - from the dog and cat -  in the kitchen saying, "There's reptiles in the china cabinet!")

I think it goes back to our parents' training us to not want things. We were taught to say no when offered stuff (usually money) by friends of our parents, to politely refuse.

An aunt once gave me a couple of long-sleeved tees for Christmas, sort of a brown, tan, and green version of a Beaver Cleaver tee. I put on a really good act and fussed over them, thanked her profusely, eventually put them away, and never wore them.

* In a little act of rebellion against my order, one Christmas our daughter once wrapped up some humbug candies in cellophane and attached a cut out drawing of  sheep to it.

Jun 21, 2021 - 4:51:15 AM
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Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

26068 posts since 8/3/2003

It's really a shame that you guys take away the joy others get from giving to you. Just how much does it hurt or irritate to say thank you, give people a hug or just at least act like you appreciate the thought?

Now, having said that, if you don't want to receive gifts, by all means, let folks know so they won't bother to go to the trouble, time and expense of making/buying/giving gifts. I'd rather not give at all as to have someone not appreciate my gifts.

I remember one time I knitted a beautiful sweater for my granddaughter. When her father finally got to bring her over to see us (long story), she had the sweater with her and you could tell it had never been worn. That told me that his ex-wife didn't want anything hand made, at least not from me. She never got another thing. Yes, it hurt my feelings.

Jun 21, 2021 - 5:11:01 AM
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banjoy

USA

9675 posts since 7/1/2006

I used to have similar feelings about receiving compliments for anything. For some reason, when I was much younger, I took compliments the wrong way and had no real idea how to respond and sometimes, it was a negative response.

As I've aged and grown, somewhere along the way I was exposed to the idea that receiving a compliment, same as receiving a gift (if given in the right spirit) can be an act of grace. I've learned that is very true, at least for me. When someone compliments me now I accept it and thank that person for their kindness. If they are critical of me, again, it depends on the spirit in which it was intended that makes the difference. So the flipside of that is, if I am criticized and it's given in the wrong spirit, I have no problems sharing my feeling on that, too.

If someone gives you a gift and has expectations in return, then it never was a gift at all. You can always decline accepting a gift, and graciously bow out if the vibe isn't right.

There was a person on BHO some years ago who I got into a lengthy email dialogue over many years and we'd exchange small gifts. I'd receive a book, I'd send a book. I'd receive a CD of some music, I'd send a small piece of artwork in return. These were tiny gestures of appreciation and none was expected or even announced, stuff would just show up and these had no strings attached that I sensed. Just kind, generous acts. Then, that person decided to ship a practically-new Deering banjo to me, which I had to sleep on, and refused to accept. I could not do that so the banjo never was shipped. That offer was made after I had posted in some thread that I like Deerings and would like to own one someday. But not that way. I had to refuse. It didn't feel right and that's all I could go with. So I declined, but did so graciously and with thanks for the offer. But I explained why I declined and that was accepted and understood.

If you are having all these negative feelings attached to accepting a gift, probably just better to refuse and explain why. It sounds as if there are strings attached to some gifts and if true, your feelings are appropriate.

(I guess I wonder, though, how you feel when you give a gift to someone else.)

There is plenty of literature out there about the act of acceptance. And it is an act (not as in acting, but as in a conscious act, a doing). A gift cannot be received freely unless it is given freely and it is a conscious act, on both ends. One cannot exist without the other. If there are strings or expectations attached, then something else is in play and it's not a gift.

The same concept goes for forgiveness, which is a doing. When one forgives another (in sincerity) the circuit isn't complete until that forgiveness is accepted. One can't fully exist without the other.

Having said all this, I do understand though, completely. These can be complex feelings, like layers of an onion and one size does not fit all.

Anyway, my 2 cents. My gift to you, fwiw.

Edited by - banjoy on 06/21/2021 05:16:45

Jun 21, 2021 - 5:33:10 AM

figmo59

USA

33803 posts since 3/5/2008

Lefty..
Try replacing your use of the word ..you.. in your rant with...i..

Not all feel about gifts as ..you. do..
Nor...as I do...far that matter.. ;0)
please...
Excluding gifts to your wife...
Do...you...like or give gifts.?

Jun 21, 2021 - 5:41:23 AM

Wyozark

USA

1110 posts since 12/2/2012

 

My first thought: "Wow, a very mature and wise response brought on by character and experience." Second more childish thought: "Wow, he must be really old!" But as Indy said, "It's not the years, honey, it's the mileage."

Jun 21, 2021 - 5:42:38 AM

figmo59

USA

33803 posts since 3/5/2008

I...give gifts... alot....

No strings attatched....

If one puts strings a attached on a gift...
Then...it is a...Deal...

Many times I will ask the intended gift person if they would like the gift...before just presenting it...

I feel no rejection if they say no...nor do I force the.. by way of guilt if they do not accept...
I..mean...it is a.."gift"...

Right?

Jun 21, 2021 - 7:41:18 AM

Banjo Lefty

Canada

2286 posts since 6/19/2014

I was wrong. I thought I had got off lightly on Father's Day. But then my stepdaughter showed up with a small planter she had bought me for the garden. It's small and grey and kind of ugly, with one flat side and a hole at the top so that it can be hung up against, say, the side of the house. I don't like it, don't want it and can't use it, but . . . to please the stepdaughter I tried to find a screw that would fit the hole. Nothing doing. If I tried to enlarge the hole with my drill, I'd crack the thing. So I took it back to the potter who made it and got him to enlarge the hole. Success. Now I had to mount it on the side of the deck, THEN I had to go to the garden centre and buy a plant that would be small enough to fit, and trail over the edge. Then I had to plant it up, only to realized that the planter didn't have a drainage hole. Well I'm not going back to the potter a second time. If the plant dies, it dies. So far this "gift" has cost me three hours of my time, and $5.00 for the plant, not to mention that it spoils the line of the deck. But what can I do? Every time she comes over, she's going to ask about the planter, and every time I'm going to have to lie and tell her how happy I am that she gave it to me. It's really a gift for her, not me.

Jun 21, 2021 - 9:01:21 AM
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Owen

Canada

8976 posts since 6/5/2011

Lefty:  "But what can I do? "

Owen: Print out and give your step-daughter and other family members copies of what you've posted here..... IF you just tell 'em they might forget (?).... best to have a paper trail.

Jun 21, 2021 - 11:37:47 AM
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Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

26068 posts since 8/3/2003

Banjo Lefty

Why don't you just tell your stepdaughter (and others) that you don't want gifts, don't like gifts and would appreciate it if they'd save their time, energy and money and do something for themselves or give it to a favorite charity. If it upsets them, do you really care? I mean, what's worse, you being upset or them being upset? The answer is up to you.

You should NOT have to lie and tell people you like something when you don't.

Jun 21, 2021 - 12:25:48 PM

10334 posts since 8/22/2006

Gifts are not required with me nor are they expected but I won’t turn down the offering by no means. If it gives the gifter a sense of something done out of the goodness of their heart and soul I'm not going to take that away from anyone.

Edited by - 5B-Ranch on 06/21/2021 12:26:53

Jun 21, 2021 - 1:34:47 PM
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Banjo Lefty

Canada

2286 posts since 6/19/2014

I tried telling my wife one year not to bother with any presents for my birthday. That did not go over well. It turns out she likes giving things to people and if I deprive her of that pleasure, why I'm just being mean.

It's a no-win situation. The purpose of gift-giving, it appears, is to make the giver feel good, not the recipient.

Jun 21, 2021 - 1:36:13 PM

Paul R

Canada

14694 posts since 1/28/2010

Back in September of '73 I played a wedding mass with another musician, a prof at the U of Toronto, who had three PhD's but tended to break strings. Just before the last song I whispered, "Congratulations John, you haven't broken a string yet." Famous last words. After the reception I told him we needed to get him new strings. When we walked into the Toronto Folklore Centre, I spotted a guitar on the wall and said, "There's a L'Arrivee!" He said, "Why don't you buy it, Paul. Youve been wanting it for about three years now." Joking, I said, "I don't have any money, John, but if you want to pay for it, I'll buy it." He turned around and went back to his VW microbus and came back with his chequebook. Like an idiot I let him pay for the guitar - $550, second-hand. Convert that to today's dollars and go figure. I did pay him back over a number of months. However, I'll never know if that act of generosity put a dent in his ability to care for his wife and five kids. I was too young and ignorant of such things to even think of it. (Like I said in another thread, I'm the luckiest guy in the world.

In a couple of years I was financially solvent enough to start buying guitars and other instruments. But that '72 L'Arrivee is still my number one guitar, and the best-sounding acoustic I've ever played. But, had I sense, I would have found a way to politely decline his offer. I gave him the hardshell case for my Yamaha, and gave the Yamaha to a friend that evening.

I don't refuse gifts when they're given to me, but things people give seem to be suited to what I do - things for my cycling, music books, even instruments back in the day. And Al sent an instrument for the granddaughter. Things offered out of thoughtfulness, not out of a sense of duty or custom. (A couple of months after she was born, our daughter "gave" me a Christmas gift "with all my love" - a pair of earplugs. How thoughtful.)

Jun 21, 2021 - 2:59:19 PM
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111 posts since 4/14/2021

I kinda feel the way you do Lefty. At least you said you got lucky on Father's day!
Of course I took that the wrong way!

But, I'm also in the position that there is nothing I want or need. At least that costs less than around $10,000. Which is a bit outside most people's budget. It's a blessing to be in that kind of position, yet a curse for would be gift givers.

So, when asked what I want for Father's Day/Birthday.....
MEAT!
So, I either get taken to a steakhouse for lunch or dinner, or a gift card for our local Meat Market, or a box of select cuts of one of those high falootin' butchers boxes. Total win! Especially since I love to grill/smoke at home.
And, since meat is a consumable, one does not have to trot it out everytime that gift giver stops by.

I'd be totally OK with Mad Hornet's suggestion of a bottle of bourbon too! Which can be shared on visits, making that much more enjoyable!

Edited by - Mikey Lawless on 06/21/2021 15:02:29

Jun 21, 2021 - 3:32:38 PM
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111 posts since 4/14/2021

quote:
Originally posted by Paul R

 But that '72 L'Arrivee is still my number one guitar, and the best-sounding acoustic I've ever played. But, had I sense, I would have found a way to politely decline his offer. I gave him the hardshell case for my Yamaha, and gave the Yamaha to a friend that evening.
 


That was a great story Paul. Such a great memory to have, and every time you play that L'Arrivee, you think of your friend. To me that's a priceless thing. So it's a very good thing you accepted that offer!

Jun 21, 2021 - 11:13:33 PM
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Paul R

Canada

14694 posts since 1/28/2010

quote:
Originally posted by Mikey Lawless
quote:
Originally posted by Paul R

 But that '72 L'Arrivee is still my number one guitar, and the best-sounding acoustic I've ever played. But, had I sense, I would have found a way to politely decline his offer. I gave him the hardshell case for my Yamaha, and gave the Yamaha to a friend that evening.


That was a great story Paul. Such a great memory to have, and every time you play that L'Arrivee, you think of your friend. To me that's a priceless thing. So it's a very good thing you accepted that offer!


And that's not all. A few years later it was at the Folklore Centre having some adjustments done. I picked it up one evening. There were three people sitting on the floor almost out of sight. Also there was Ray Materick, whose album was getting some airplay. He introduced himself and asked about the guitar. I told him it was a L'Arrivee and handed it to him to try. He liked it and called over my shoulder to the people on the floor, "Try this one, Joni!" Joni drawled, "What is it?" he said, "It's a L'Arrivee." She replied, "I already played a L'Arrivee." End of story, but I had to wonder, what if she'd tried it and wanted it? Could I, would I, have refused to sell it to Joni Mitchell? Fortunately, I never had to make that decision. Glad of it, too.

John died in '03. I played at his memorial mass. Unfortunately, the L'Arrivee was in need of repair, so I used my '83 L'Arrivee instead. I have lots of memories of John.

Jun 22, 2021 - 2:57:46 AM

4190 posts since 12/6/2009

quote:
Originally posted by Texasbanjo

It's really a shame that you guys take away the joy others get from giving to you. Just how much does it hurt or irritate to say thank you, give people a hug or just at least act like you appreciate the thought?

Now, having said that, if you don't want to receive gifts, by all means, let folks know so they won't bother to go to the trouble, time and expense of making/buying/giving gifts. I'd rather not give at all as to have someone not appreciate my gifts.

I remember one time I knitted a beautiful sweater for my granddaughter. When her father finally got to bring her over to see us (long story), she had the sweater with her and you could tell it had never been worn. That told me that his ex-wife didn't want anything hand made, at least not from me. She never got another thing. Yes, it hurt my feelings.


.....and I know the story all too well Shari

Jun 22, 2021 - 3:18:35 AM

4190 posts since 12/6/2009

quote:
Originally posted by overhere
quote:
Originally posted by Texasbanjo

It's really a shame that you guys take away the joy others get from giving to you. Just how much does it hurt or irritate to say thank you, give people a hug or just at least act like you appreciate the thought?

Now, having said that, if you don't want to receive gifts, by all means, let folks know so they won't bother to go to the trouble, time and expense of making/buying/giving gifts. I'd rather not give at all as to have someone not appreciate my gifts.

I remember one time I knitted a beautiful sweater for my granddaughter. When her father finally got to bring her over to see us (long story), she had the sweater with her and you could tell it had never been worn. That told me that his ex-wife didn't want anything hand made, at least not from me. She never got another thing. Yes, it hurt my feelings.


.....and I know the story all too well Shari


ooooppps....Sherry....sorry

Jun 23, 2021 - 5:05:17 AM

57680 posts since 12/14/2005
Online Now

If you fed me a hundred raisins, before they got all dried out, I'd be very grapeful.

Jun 23, 2021 - 10:54:57 AM

599 posts since 10/4/2018

I don't have a gift phobia, but I do have a phobia about people writing long paragraphs complaining about stuff only to tell me at the end, that it's their birthday....forcing me to tell them Happy BIrthday. I'm not falling for your clever ruse.

Jun 24, 2021 - 10:02:24 AM

Bart Veerman

Canada

4976 posts since 1/5/2005

Be glad you don't live in Japan. Receiving a gift there requires you to purchase a "return," or "thank-you," gift...

Jun 25, 2021 - 8:20:01 AM

6804 posts since 9/5/2006

new under ware and sox is much more enjoyed as a gift for me then 30 years ago.
these days a pack of smokes and a cup of coffee and a slice of cheesecake go a long way into my contentment .

Jun 25, 2021 - 9:37:11 AM

Buddur

USA

2991 posts since 10/23/2004

Why do I get the feeling that the OP hates giving gifts even more than receiving them.

Just can't feel sorry for someone who comes off as an ingrate.

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