Saturday, December 27, 2008

The Season for Giving & Receiving

I've gotten many things over the years during this festive season. Likewise, I have also given many things to the people who I love in my life. This year was particularly interesting because I noticed that even with the upcoming (or ongoing) recession, people were not the least hesitant in their holiday spending. When I went to the mall it was the usual frenzy, no reduction in shopping gusto. People were still forking out those bills, still swiping their VISA & Mastercards like there was no impending danger. I felt like I should've been running around screaming "DANGER, DANGER, DOOM, DOOM, THE END IS FUCKING NIGH".
But of course, I didn't run around like a mad woman (that is the stuff for those revolutionaries). However, my whole observations got me thinking. In the giving & receiving of presents that are so characteristic of this culture (western culture, i.e American, U.K, Australia...or any other culture that has been infected with this strain of Materialism; materialisticitis, traumatic compulsive splurg~irifimentia), what price are we willing to pay when it comes to saying to the ones we care about, "I appreciate you, I love you"...? How do you justify spending $550 on Abercrombie & Fitch apparel for a 13 year-old? Where do you draw the line between compulsive spending & reasonable gift giving? I don't care if I seem cheap, but this year I spent only $165.63 on seven people in gifts they absolutely loved & truly appreciated. How much did you spend on your holiday shopping/gift giving?


ShonaVixen said...

I spent 160GBP on presents and they were all appreciated...hmm much is that in dollars...$233.19

Afrobabe said...

I gave out chocolates from the £1 shop...lmao...much appreciated too!!!!

rethots said...

Wished i could say, i didn't spend slightly over $300 to get someone a phone only for the person to say; oh, you got me a phone, thot 'twas biscuits?

goodnaijagirl said...

I'm not sure how much I spent but I didn't go overboard. I always try to shop smart and work on getting people something I think they'll love, while staying conservative with my spending.

Ouch! How does one handle a comment like that?

Good Naija Girl

doug said...

Roughly $200. And it had better have been appreciated o!

@rethots: ouch!!!

@Afrobabe: good going jo!

And have a splendid New Year Anya!

Jarrai said...

I cooked xmas lunch for my peeps!!! Seasons greetings and happy new year in advance xx

Anonymous said...

love your space.
seasons greetings

Abujamaiden said...

I spent $100 on myself (retail and sales therapy)...hehe

Kai, I'm a student who doesn't wait till Christmas to give presents (give gifts in summer) so I have an excuse. I sent Christmas wishes and "Jesus is the reason for the season messages." Shey thats good enough?

Merry Christmas

Original Mgbeke said...

My dear, its all about the thought o jare. I didn't spend too much money this christmas and man the malls was crazy, so much for a recession. I don't know who sent me there on Xmas eve but I spent a good 20 mins looking for parking. Hissss...

Happy holidays o jare.

AnyaPosh said...

Yeah, ShonaVixen that's about right. Wow...that's a lot when I think in dollars. But hey, atleast they were grateful.

Afrobabe, LOL! after giving out chocolate, what did you get in exchange? I ask because my family is all about reciprocity so $1 chocolate bars just wouldn't cut it.

Rethots, awww damn...that must've hurt. I hope you collected the phone & went straight to the grocery store to buy them cookies instead. Yikes....

Goodnaijagirl, exactly! Get 'em things that are not too pricey but tangible & lovable. you're on track.

Doug, that sounds good. I hope you have a wonderful new year as well!

Jarrai, why didn't I think of that?! lol. I bet they definitely loved that gift. The gift of immediate satisfaction. Happy New year to you also!

Marjoram, thank you. Blessings for 2009!

AbujaMaiden, you're something else! But gifts to yourself are always justifiable - everytime ;) & yes o, Jesus IS the reason for the season...I dunno how we can do it but we should be presenting gifts to him instead to take away the focus from ourselves.

Original Mgbeke, the mall was just too darn crazy to even hint at a recession. We were lucky in the parking lot, as we got there someone was pulling out. If not im sure it would've been the same 20mins for us.

yummy411 said...

hi ;) i gave a $15 gift versus my usual give or take $100 gift and it was the best present ever! i've never seen a reaction like it!

Vera Ezimora said...

How much did I spend???


Babe, have you seen my account lately???

Afrobabe said...

lol...Funny enough I got good stuff in return..

Two sets of pyjamas and of them was the hot pants style..

Then I got light blue perfume by D&G...see?? My £1 chocolates yielded much!!!

Funms-the rebirth said...

approximately $100....... just for two people tho....... and on myself? lets say my credit card company will be calling me soon... my excuse, i just changed countries and im all alone!

Ladi said...

To much materialism during this season buying presents even outs me off especially when you're trying to find the right 9ja money (goron kristmas in hausa), chinchin and fried meat for the guests is enough...haha

Seasons greetings!!

Omo calabar. said...

Didnt spend that much really for my friends, they only person i had to shell out dollars for was ma gal, cos she deserved it.
Happy new year.

Parakeet said...

As usual she speaks the gospel. You see you make a lot of sense cos I remember doing a module sometime in uni about the origin of gifts. Its turns out that in Victorian times people would give gifts such as one orange because it signified fruitfulness. So in those days they would give really meaningful gifts that people really appreciated and kept for years. But now how do we feed capitalism if we dont spend money?

I spent a fair bit of money but I bought things I knew people needed and appreciated.

Happy new year my dear and may your wisdom know no bound.


happy new year!!!!

AnyaPosh said...

yummy411, wow for $15 you got the best reaction, kudos to you

Vera Ezimora, hmm...i don't expect anyone to buy gifts on credit o! If the money ain't there, what are you spending. responsible girl, g'luck in '09.

Afrobabe, it's not fair, ...all for only you!! I guess santa was really good to you this year :)

Funms-the rebirth, that's the way to go, hun! if you can't buy yourself a gift then nobody else deserves it!

Ladi, I love the way we do it at home. This quest for material goods has no end. There will always be urges to buy! buy!! buy!!! Man, I miss the simple life. Seasons greetings to you too.

Omo calabar, good for you!! It's only sensible to give presents to people who really deserve unnecessary spending! Happy new year to you too b

Parakeet, I wish this wisdom of old could be re-introduced into our society of today because I really wouldn't mind a hamper of fresh fruit :D
happy new year to you babez

SOLOMONSYDELLE, same to you hunny!!

Shubby Doo said...

i spent money on my holiday plane ticket and on some new dresses. I only bought present for the kids (4) in my family...i stopped buying presents for adults a long time ago...i think christmas is as commercial as you let it become

happy new year

Original Mgbeke said...

Fine girl, come and update o!

NigerianDramaQueen said...

As far as I'm concerned, expensive gifts don't always make for good gifts. Once in a while it's okay to do the occassional splurge, but like you said, the line has to be drawn! I spent about $300...
It's time for you to update!!!!!