Saturday, December 20, 2008
THE FINANCIAL METRICS OF RE-GIFTING
Having decided to play the Christmas Grinch this year, I have been searching through my closets and drawers for stuff to re-gift to the poor souls who managed to make my severely-downsized gift list.
Let me just point out once and for all that, contrary to popular opinion, people who re-gift are not cheap, lazy couch potatoes who are, well, too cheap and lazy to remember their loved ones at this time of the year and schlep over to the mall to buy the necessary gifts.
Au contraire, mon ami. We re-gifters (also known as RGs) are actually doing the world a huge, huge favor! Why? Just think of all the carbon emissions we are NOT emitting, by not driving our cars and burning fuel as our engines idle for 20 minutes while queuing at the mall parking entrance and driving around looking for that ever-elusive parking spot.
And don't get me started on all that wasteful packaging that comes with purchasing gifts. Why shirts have to be wrapped in fine Japanese paper, then into plastic and then into a carton shopping bag is beyond me.
If anything, it is the fault of those people who give us weird / inappropriate / unusable gifts ("Unwanted Gifts", or UGs) in the first place, that we RGs are forced to RG!!! :-D Gaddemit!!
Anyway, to get to the point, i've thought of some metrics to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of one's RG efforts:
1. Average Mental Regifting Period (AMRP)
= No. of days between the time you receive an UG, and the time you think of someone who would make a good victim, errr, recipient of the regifted unwanted gift (i.e. RUG).
For ex., if you receive a faux Seiko wallet from your creepy Uncle Leo on Dec. 12th and realized on Dec. 22nd that it would be an ideal gift for your lazy golf pro Cosmo, then your AMRP is ten (10) days.
Our rule of thumb is as follows:
<> 100 days - You're a bit of a dunce, aren't you?
2. Average Unwanted Gift Turnover (AUGT)
No. of days between receipt of UG and actual re-gifting of the UG
This measures how efficiently you actually RG UGs, rather than stashing them in your closet and forgetting them till next Christmas.
Say that you get a ceramic white frog from your annoying nephew George on Dec. 9th and regifted it to your big-haired secretary Elaine via the office Kris Kringle on Dec. 24th, then your AUGT is 24. Pretty good!
3. Unwanted Gift Recipient Christmas Thrill Rating (UGRCTR)
= Recipient's satisfaction with the RUG (out of 10 points) _____________________________________________
Re-gifter's expected satisfaction from Recipient (out of 10 points)
Ergo, if your overweight postman Newman goes ballistic over the coffee mug you RG'd him (i.e. 3 out of 10), yet you actually thought he would enjoy drinking his daily cappuccino using it (i.e. 9 of 10), then the UGRCTR is a paltry 0.33.
On a chirpier note, if Newman liked the dog repellant you gave him (RG'd via your demanding boss Mr. Pitt), the corresponding UGRCTR would likely be 10 / 10 = 1.
Our aim is for this ratio to be equal to 1, meaning the recipient liked your gift as much as you had expected. In the event that the UGRCTR is greater than 1 (i.e. the recipient's delight goes beyond your wildest expectations), both RG and recipient are enjoined to hold hands and sing (all together now), "Fa la la la la, La la la la . . . ."
Merry Christmas, everyone!
(Thanks to "Cartoonful" for the tree photo)