The Gift That Keeps On Giving:

Well? How did you do? Did you get the right gift for your loved one on Valentine’s Day? Or did you cause irreparable damage to the relationship? As with most holidays Valentine’s Day comes with the same angst of “Did I pick the right gift? Did my gift say too much? Or too little?” When I become President, or Sexiest Man Alive, whichever comes first, I’m going to pass a law. 

The law will state that the correct gift is always…drumroll please…the gift card. I am in love with gift cards. I love them so much that for Valentine’s Day I wanted to buy a gift cards for gift cards to show them how much I love them. I would sleep with gift cards on the first date. In the checkout line it’s all I can do to restrain myself from buying gift cards for myself. I know I could buy the same stuff for myself with actual money, but isn’t having a gift card so much better? It feels like you’re getting stuff for free, even if you paid for the gift card. 

I was in a large, big box hardware/lumber store last week and I came across the biggest gift card kiosk/endcap I have ever seen. As I rounded the end of the aisle and my eyes gazed upon the 8th Wonder of the World a great and pure light shone down from above and I heard a chorus of heavenly angels. It might have been a circular saw, but with that Mount Rushmore of gift cards in my sights it sure sounded like angels. It was so big that I’d need to summon an apron wearing lackey to get a ladder if I wanted a gift card from the top row. If that wall of gift cards was a chocolate river then you can call me Augustus Gloop.

I mean seriously, how can you go wrong with gift cards? If you know someone likes something and you buy them a gift card for it, they get exactly what they want. Or who doesn’t like going to a restaurant for free? “What is this?!!? A bill for my meal! Pishaw! Take that filthy thing away for I have a gift card!”  That is literally what’s going on in my head when I get to use a restaurant gift card. If I could put on a fur-lined red velvet robe and crown while I bellowed that to a waitress I think I could die a happy man. 

To the detractors who would say, “Well giving a gift card shows that you didn’t put any thought into it.” Really? Even if you got a gift card for their favorite store? Yeah, your idea of buying clothes that are the wrong size is always so much more thoughtful. I love returning things or wearing some ill-fitting, hideous garment just so you can feel good about yourself for choosing such a “thoughtful gift.” 

You know what? They even have gift cards for an amount of money. At first I didn’t understand this, thinking it was somewhat redundant, but now I understand the genius. A gift card for money is also thoughtful. You can use it like a credit card. It won’t bulk up your wallet or cause you to have to do any tedious counting of paper money. A gift card for money won’t cause you to receive 98 cents in change that you will then throw into your pocket, a jar or car cup holder never to be used. With a gift card the change stays right on it for you to use next time. The best thing about gift cards for money is that you can use them to buy other gift cards!

You know who has a great gift card? Amazon, makers of the Amazon Kindle. If you get an Amazon gift card you can subscribe to The Phil Factor on your Kindle so that my unique brand of idiocy can delivered to you wirelessly and instantateously no matter where you are. Now that is a gift that keeps on giving. 


4 responses to “The Gift That Keeps On Giving:

  1. I don't have a problem with gift cards. They work.

  2. Um… they only work as long as the company they are for does not go bankrupt / into liquidation. I like the idea of gift cards for a large shopping mall but I'd probably spend the money on something really boring like groceries and then have the extra real cash to buy that “special something” (ie: geek stuff) when the timing is right. I learned the hard way that it's best to spend gift cards as soon as possible. At one point in the not too distant part, I was one of many disgruntled customers. The store in question was a large chain and the announcement that they were going into “voluntary liquidation” was very unexpected.

  3. Gift cards = good.

  4. YAAAA! I'm not the only one that gets it! Dzeni, of course you have to use them right away! That's the fun of it! Even if you spend them on geek stuff. I guess I'll be buying you an Apple store gift card then.

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