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Registering restricts gift giving

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Registering restricts gift giving

Posted May 2, 2008

Susan Acker
Web Editor

I have never liked the idea of asking for gifts. I used to hate to make Christmas lists for Santa because I always felt like I was begging.

Now, I have no problem with other people making birthday wishlists or lists to Santa. However, the lists that some children and adults are now allowed to make that are considered perfectly normal and acceptable that drive me insane, are gift registries.

Most stores offer them and most have machines that provide all of the registry information and print out a nifty list of everything the expectant mother, newlyweds or spoiled child wants.

How did anyone ever buy gifts before the invention of gift registries?

What I hate most about these registries is the little card that many now include in the invitation for the celebration.

I don’t care what any modern etiquette book or Web site says about it being acceptable. It’s just plain rude.

Why stop with putting the card with the invitation? Why not just call your guests on the phone and tell them that you want money so you can buy your own gifts because they are obviously incapable of choosing something you will like?

If you are getting married for example, family members and those in the wedding party are supposed to spread the word about what you and your groom would like.

And chances are that the guests you invite to your wedding know you so they are probably perfectly capable of choosing an acceptable gift. Or they are probably smart enough to figure out they need to call someone in the wedding party for information if they want to buy something from a registry.

What happened to being gracious and thankful? Our society is all about “what I want,” “when I want it” and “how I want it now.”

My all-time favorite, however, is the “cash only” instruction on a wedding invitation a friend of mine received.

Talk about a faux pas.

Now I know that was a bit harsh, but it is so insulting to receive an invitation with a demand of what kind of gift should be bought.

Allow me to clarify. I don’t think registering for gifts is 100 percent bad.
Registering for gifts can take some pressure off of the guests because they know what to buy.

A gift registry can also be tactful. Selecting a list of reasonably priced and appropriate items is perfectly acceptable.

Registering for a $300 vanity chair is a tad presumptuous and asking for a box of condoms is just, well, gross.

Yes, I have seen both items on gift registries.

I suppose everyone is entitled to do whatever they want when it comes to registering for gifts, but there is a fine line between offering suggestions of what you like and making demands. Personally, I like surprises.

Susan Acker, a senior journalism major, is Web editor of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at sacker@ulv.edu.