I had an opportunity after work this afternoon to start some of my holiday shopping. I ended up getting myself The Chicago Manual of Style at Borders because they had the edition that’s required for my course next semester, it was twenty bucks cheaper than IUPUI’s price, I didn’t have to pay for shipping, and I had a 30% off coupon that came in the mail. Oh, yeah, and zero ideas for anyone else.
Every year my dad’s family does a drawing. You pull someone’s name out of a hat and you’re responsible for getting something for that person. You’re also responsible for finding out what the hell this person likes, because chances are you don’t know them very well. Not like you’ve never really talked to them, but you have really general ideas about what they want. Like, “Bill likes golf.” Okay. What sorts of “golf things” does Bill already have? My family isn’t exactly open about what they want, but they expect you to give them an itemized list of what you want. They’re also really bad about coordinating who gets what for whom.
For example: my grandmother. If you’re lucky you might find out that she wants a DVD and something generic like “things about lighthouses.” You don’t know if she collects figures of lighthouses, pictures, books, or what. So you get her a lighthouse-themed calendar (among other things) one year and she doesn’t seem thrilled.
Another example: my mom. Last year she said she wanted a Bluetooth headset for her cell phone. So I got her one. As did my dad. And my grandmother. I was able to return mine, and I think my dad did, as well. She kept the one Grandma gave her.
So I guess my choice to purchase a book for class was part selfishness, but mostly just laziness.