Monday, January 16, 2006


Following the time honored tradition of using ones blog to complain about stuff of trivial import to the rest of the world, I shall now complain and describe how to irritate me:

Give me a gift card.

I got 2 gift cards last Christmas to a place that serves fantastic desserts. I used about 2/3 of one of them many months ago while the other sits unused, chip-clipped to my fridge. I don't really eat desserts, and although they serve full meals, I just don't go to sit-down restaurants by myself and it's just not the kind of place I go with my friends. (It'd be a good date-place, but I think it would be just a bit tacky to whip out the gift card on a date, if I ever had one. *sigh* )

I got another gift card this Christmas, to a large chain store we'll call Superlative Purchase. There are several SP's within a short drive of here, or I could order online and either have items shipped to me or pick them up locally. I don't normally buy music CDs (since they come to me freely *wink*) so there's not much I'd want from that department and, given the size of the gift card, DVDs seem the logical choice. I'm somewhat discerning (in my own perverse way) in what DVDs I want to own, and naturally the local SP's don't have everything I want in stock. But to order online, I have to pay both shipping AND tax (which their website incorrectly calculates, by the way), neither of which is an issue if I order from (free shipping over $25).

So now, anal-boy that I am, I've created a spreadsheet listing potential purchases from either SP or Nile, complete with tax offsets, shipping charges, and a little indicator which highlights whether a potential DVD is cheaper at SP or Nile. If I got paid for my time, I would have spent more money than the gift card is worth writing formulae that optimize the number of things I could potentially buy, plus combinations of ordering some items online versus waiting for the local store to restock from the holidays...

All to maximize the benefit of a free damn gift.


At 9:00 AM, Blogger Zelda said...

I am so impressed that you know how tacky it is to whip out a gift card on a date. But since Jethro and I are largely spoken for, why don't we all go? Seriously. Email us.

At 9:10 AM, Blogger christ*el #3tx said...

you're a mess.

i like it.

At 9:19 AM, Blogger Duly Inspired said...

Charitable donation then? Saves the headache and the spreadsheet. You really put this on a spreadsheet? !!

At 10:12 AM, Blogger kcterrilynn said...

A spreadsheet? Seriously? "That's hot," she said, without sarcasm.

At 4:17 PM, Blogger Sass said...

Check the expiration date and hold on to it if you can until the store restocks it. Or just spend it on something outlandish.

At 4:48 PM, Blogger tinyhands said...

Z- Two possible followups:
a) There's lots of things that are too tacky to whip out on a date;
b) "Largely" spoken for? Not completely? So I still have a chance!

#3moo- You say "messy" they say "drunk and disorderly". Potayto, potahto.

1L- I know what you're thinking- A database would have made more sense. With a web-interface...

KCTL- "I know," he said without shame.

Sass- It's not worth enough to be outlandish. It's merely silly.

At 10:28 AM, Blogger tonia said...

I feel so quilty that the first card still sits unloved...Wanna set a date?
And so you don't feel bad, I did much the same thing (spreadsheet, etc.) yesterday just to buy toiletries. Yeah, you heard right.
For future reference, there is a site where you can buy/sell/exchange unwanted gift cards.

At 10:30 AM, Blogger tonia said...

oh, and I'm going to Supurlative Purchase today. I'm jealous of your gift card.

At 12:27 PM, Blogger Inanna said...

That's just hilarious!! And I would never do the same thing between Barnes and Noble and Amazon, nope, not me, cuz I can't do computerized spreadsheets, I have to use the old fashioned ink, paper, calculator... not that I would do that. *innocent look*

At 9:52 PM, Blogger lucidkim said...

or you could do what i do with gift cards - REGIFT THEM! what could be more simple! the only bad thing is when they write your name on the card holder - but that's when you buy a cool card and toss in the gift card. this is way too tacky to be sharing, isn't it? (and if anyone reading this is someone i gave a gift card to - trust me: i paid for that one....):) kim

At 12:13 PM, Blogger Jethro said...

I got a gift card to Academy. It's a shame they don't sell ninja swords or throwing stars.

At 1:44 PM, Blogger tinyhands said...

Tonia- I've heard you can get about 90 cents/dollar for them on Craigslist, but the whole point of my angst is that I actually want to get something. As for the other, you know how to find me.

Peach- Paper? How quaint!

Kim- I'd consider regifting it if I knew anyone worthy of it. ;)

Jethro- I guess there isn't an Academy way out on Bellaire Blvd. I bet they still have some Longhorn National Championship apparel though.


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