Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Have a gift...but I expect something back.

How often has this happened to you? Someone nice gives you a gift (of their choice, which may or may not be what you want) without prompting and then expects something in return. For me this is rather infuriating. If you are going to give something, give it freely or not at all.

Now this may sound miserly and somewhat unfair, but actually it isn't. For example if I go and buy someone a fishing rod, expecting that they: a) go fishing with me b) enjoy the fishing process c) buy me something in return of equal or greater value, who is being more selfish?

On the other hand, if I ask someone for something, and they get it for me, then there is an argument to be made that I owe them something, but again, if it is given as a gift, then I don't.

Definition of a gift from Merriam Webster: "something voluntarily transferred by one person to another without compensation"

Some people even try to disguise what they are giving as a gift, but add a condition either when giving, or shortly afterwards.

Only something given without conditions is a gift. Otherwise its a contract agreement, like a loan.



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