There is a scam out there as old as the hills that has been cheating Americans (and probably other people) out of their hard earned money. Yes, I am talking about the greeting card industry. But no, I’m not talking about holidays that the greeting card companies invented just so they could increase their profits, like Valentine’s Day and Easter. I’m talking about the ridiculous prices they are charging for these cards.According to the research I just did using some pencils, a computer, and a calculator which apparently has no batteries, the average cost of a greetings card is about $3.00 but many near the range of $5.00 to $6.00. This is outrageous!
But before we dive into this discussion I feel like I should disclose something. This is hard for me to say, so I guess I should just come out and say it. My parents owned an American Greetings card and gift store from the time I was about 10 years old until my thirties. So, yes, I come from blood money.
I’m not proud of this. But since then, I have learned about the evils of greeting cards and about the lives they have destroyed. They must be stopped!
Pat: Greeting cards? Can’t you just say “hi” to people in person? That’s what I do. Seems a lot easier than writing a card. And it’s free.
Christian: You don’t ever buy greeting cards? What about for Mother’s day? Weddings? High School/College graduations? Flag day?
So...I gotta’ admit, this whole greeting cards racket is kinda’ new to me. Tell me more! Or would it be better to stop telling me anything now, in order to ensure my safety from the card mob?
Christian: Well if you have ever seen “The Godfather” then you know what it’s like. Basically change whatever it was that the Corleone family did to make money with selling greeting cards and you have it. Now, I’m not saying that there is a lot of violence involved in the greeting card industry but I’m also not saying there isn’t. If you know what I mean.
Pat: Okay, well, now you’ve brought up something else that’s kind of embarrassing. Umm...I’ve never seen “The Godfather”. Any of them (what are there, like six of them?). I know I’m Italian and should see it in order to understand my cultural heritage, but I guess I’m more “Il Postino” than I am mobster flicks. Sorry if I let you down (again).
So if I haven’t seen the movie, I probably won’t understand greeting cards, right?
Christian: Definitely not. But let me try and help you understand. First off, as I mentioned above, they are way too expensive. A greeting card is just some sappy writing on fancy paper. And they want $3 to $6 dollars for that? You could feed a family of four half a meal for that price.
Second of all, and I can’t stress this enough, the sappy writing. Yes it’s mentioned again. That’s how bad it is.
Here’s an example:
Was I raised by a pack of Care Bears? Who talks like this?
Now typically, I never go for the “serious” cards that have heartfelt messages on them. Pee-yew! If you give someone one of those you might as well write the following message in the card:
“Instead of telling you how special you are to me in my own words, I found these words that a complete stranger wrote and sold for some money to a giant corporation while I was at the grocery store buying some ham. Luckily they describe exactly my deepest emotions about how I feel about you, and I got a great price on the ham.”
Is that the message you want to give a loved one? No.
And don’t even get me started on the ones that are labeled as “humorous”. The word “ladle” is light years ahead of the greeting card companies when it comes to humor.
Basically what I’m saying is that greeting cards should be abolished by society. Is that too much to ask?
Pat: I’m no expert on our Constitution or the details of its legislative workings, but I don’t think the abolition of greeting cards is something our initiative and referendum system was designed to handle.
Unlike you, I am all for insincere hyperbole when expressing our feelings towards another person. When else are we going to use those words?
Christian: OK, fine we can keep these lame cards around. I agree that it is easier to just go buy a lame card then make one yourself. But there should at least be some laws on how much the greeting card companies can charge for them. They pretty much have a Monopoly on the market and I think they are taking advantage of it. They’re basically sinking our Battleship. Making it harder for us to win at the game of Life. It really Boggles my mind. They could at least get a Clue and say they were Sorry. I would like to feed them to a bunch of Hungry Hungry Hippos. It’s no Trivial Pursuit to.. uh....umm... OK, I’m done.
Pat: Hey! We agreed not to talk to any underwriters unless we were together...are you staying true to that? You better not be screwing me out of free board games!
Christian: Balderdash! I would never Risk our friendship by running some Operation behind your back just to get some free board games. Never.