Buying the right gift

April 24, 2008

Most of us put very little thought into buying gifts for our friends. For some reason people seem intent on buying me ties and cufflinks. People: I appreciate the gesture, but I am an Internet entrepreneur. I wear jeans and t-shirts. I can’t recall in what year I last wore either of those things! Similarly, my female friends seem to receive flowers and chocolate. Those are somewhat useful, but very impersonal. The same is true for bottles of wine which are also used as a standby gift for both sexes.

I realize it’s actually hard to buy gifts for adults. We have almost everything we need. We buy ourselves the things we want. Moreover, knowing what our friends like does not necessarily help. For instance, you may know I like video games, but you can’t know what games I already have or am really interested in.

The solution is to buy people experiences aligned with their interests. Then the options are endless. In my case, I would be delighted to receive a massage at a spa, tennis lessons, theater tickets, gliding lessons, helicopter flying lessons, sessions with a personal trainer, martial arts lessons … the list goes on!

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