Thursday, September 5, 2013

No Thank You on the Thank You, Thank You

Everyone likes receiving gifts. I’m not talking about silly imaginary gifts like freedom or the gift of life, I’m talking about tangible consumer product gifts. Stuff you can return for cash refunds if needed.

But there comes a price with receiving gifts. Thank yous. Writing thank yous is such a major chore. As a child I dreaded it so much that I seriously contemplated whether or not it was worth getting the gifts in the first place (It was).  

And now I have to help write thank yous for my kids. Their birthdays are one month apart from one another and by the time we finally finish off the thank yous for one birthday we have to start all over again with the next one.

And don’t even get me started on the ridiculous amount of thank yous we had to write after our wedding. It took about five months to write out all the thank yous for our wedding gifts. I can’t speak for my wife but I plan on never getting married again because of this.

Sickening.

So Pat, how do you feel about writing thank yous? Am I an ass if I suggest that we just get rid of them for good? I think its safe to assume that we are all thankful for the tangible consumer product gifts we receive. Do we really need to waste time writing out tiny notes stating the obvious?

Pat: Easy. I’m a traditionalist on this one. Not sure why. Not sure where it came from. But I am near fascist-esque when it comes to the discipline of writing customary thank you’s. I’m open to the idea of a “thank you” via a text or email or skywriting, but regardless of medium, a thank you is a right and proper must.
I’m kind of horrified and surprised that you would even ask. P’shaw!
Christian: It doesn’t surprise me that you are into these archaic customs. You probably still shave with a razor that only has one Mach, right? My razor is at Mach 3. I need the extra Machs because I’ve got things to do and can’t waste my time shaving or writing notes to people telling them something that surely they already know.
How about this: Since it’s safe to assume anytime you give a gift to someone they are thankful for it, how about we only send the notes when we aren’t thankful? No Thank You notes! That way if you don’t receive a note from someone you can assume they are thankful for it. And if you do receive a note, well,  then you obviously blew it.
What do you think?
Pat: I’d rather just give them a Johnny Cash style finger upon receipt and forgo the written unpleasantries. I mean, they suck, right? So we’re going to reward them with our time and energy writing a note? Nope. Not me.
I’m sticking with the traditional thank you. And mine will likely be handwritten on a nice, thick-grade paper, maybe even with a graphic on it. Or a phone message.
You do know that there are customary and accepted periods of time in which you’re able to write thank yous, don’t you? For instance, you have a year after your wedding to get all your thank yous out. About the same for condolence cards or gifts.
Not sure who came up with the rules, but I bet it was a group like the League of Nations, or the Hall of Justice or something. And who are we, really, to argue with them?
Christian: It was Batman wasn’t it? Thank you note deadlines totally seems like a Batman and Robin thing. Most people would probably assume Aquaman, but I’m pretty sure he’s illiterate. And Batman and Robin have a surprising amount of free time. They probably put the little bat emblem on all their thank yous too. Robin probably begins each one with something like “Holy great gifts, Batman!” and then they laugh.
Disgusting.
But what happens if you don’t make the deadline? Also - completely unrelated - can you send me your mailing address again? I still need to send you a thank you from my wedding. It’s been roughly 120 months so I need to get that out soon.
Pat:  I don’t know. I don’t think anyone has ever tried that. I think at this point you should just recognize that you’re an inconsiderate ingrate and wait for the next opportunity to redeem yourself. Probably safer than trying to send a “Thank You” past the customary deadline.
Christian: Cool. No need to send you a thank you then. Got it.
Pat: Why do you think people feel so comfortable dissing on Aquaman? I always liked him, but now I get the sense I wasn’t supposed to. Poor guy.
Christian: If you don’t know why Aquaman is lame then you are part of the problem and not part of the solution Pat.

33 comments:

  1. So, being that my commenting on your site is a gift unto itself, I am wondering where my hand written thank you notes are? It's been a few months now and I shall expect to have a thank you note from each of you for each comment I have left. You're welcome.

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    1. You haven't been getting them? Damnit! We have a strict policy of sending one handwritten card per comment (well...I have that policy). Damn postal service! No "Thank You" for them!

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  2. I don't write thank you notes. I don't know anyone who does write thank you notes. Usually, when I receive a gift, I thank them, thus the giver feels sufficiently thanked and needs no further compensation.

    Perhaps you don't sound convincing enough when you say thank you. You should work on that.

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    1. "THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!"

      How was that?

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    2. Hmm, 6/10 I'd say. Seemed a bit too needy if you ask me.

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  3. Aquaman.

    Pfft.

    Puss.

    Pearl

    p.s. I do write thank you notes. Not because I'm grateful for the gift, but because I'm polite.

    I'm polite, dammit!!!

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    Replies
    1. Yes. Finally someone that truly understands Aquaman around here.

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  4. I'm with you guys on this. How about a chain letter thank you? You could say something like "Thank you very much for the %gift%. Please forward to next giver within 10 days of receipt of this letter. If you fail doing your duty bad stuff will happen."

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    1. I'm not sure I fully understand your proposal here but if it means I will never have to write another Thank You note, I totally support it.

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    2. Every once in awhile I get a little nutty. Unfortunately, that sometimes coincides with the release of your blog. Maybe that will explain some of my comments. On this comment I was thinking about years ago when fanatics of some sort would send out chain letters. These would advocate some particular religious belief or something else like advocating racism. At the end of the letter you were told to forward the letter. There was a threat of some kind - like a plague from God or something if you failed to do so. Sometimes the letter would tell you to send it to five or more other people.

      Anyway my thinking was you could just update this idea. List all your gifts and who gave them and then send it out to the first person on the list.

      Just thought I would explain since I take it you've never heard of a chain letter.

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    3. Ah I think I got it now. I knew what a chain letter was but wasn't clear on the turning thank you notes into one. So with this plan I write one thank you note and send it off the first person that needs a thank you and it's up to them to write the next one for me and pass it on along otherwise they will get the plague? I'm on board.

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  5. Dearest PCPPP Blog Writers,

    Thank you for an enlightening blog. It has enlightened my life in a way that is, well, illuminating. It is like a giant light bulb, no, THE SUN, was turned on above my head and now I get it. Proper thank you notes are the way to go. Clearly. Brightly. Illuminatingly.

    Seriously, Pat, I am with you!! And Christian, is this the point where we part ways???? After all my cheery comments to you because you have always been the funnier of the Pat and Christian duo? (Sorry, Pat, but it's true.)

    I have an easy-peasy solution for both of you. Do what I do: buy a big fat stack of Starbucks gift cards for $50 each. Then, if you owe someone a thank you, send them a gift card to Starbucks! Who does not love Starbucks? You can even find the Starbucks cards WITH a pre-printed thank you already on it. The person you owe a note to now owes YOU a note! Ha. Problem solved.

    Of course, the drawback is my little idea can get expensive (esp. around holiday time when I might buy 20 of these cards in one fell swoop). This is an ok system for me, though, because I like to pretend I'm rich.

    You're welcome.

    xxo
    MOV
    PS-- noteworthy tangent: Why do people not say "You're welcome" anymore???? what is with the "no problem" stuff??

    ReplyDelete
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    1. WAIT! So...does this mean that I win this argument? Point Pat? Holy shit, MOV...you just made my day! I might end this blog thing right here and now! End on a good note, y'know!

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  6. Now you have me paranoid about what thank you's I should have sent that I didn't. I've moved onto email thank you's, which I know is a poor substitute, but we do it for Christmas greetings and invitations now, so it truly ought to be sufficient, except in my guilt glutton brain. It likes to feel guilty, I guess.

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    Replies
    1. You see, Thank You notes are primarily fueled by guilt instead of gratefulness. I don't think this is what our founding fathers had in mind when they wrote the Gettysburg Address.

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  7. I think that Thank yous are a necessary evil for children and people named Christian. Sorry Christian, but it's true. Children need to be taught manners and you do too. In fact, I think you ought be writing apology notes as well. Like yesterday when I IM'd you and you didn't answer? Totally apology note worthy.

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    1. Another point for Pat? Man...I'm not used to this "success" thing!

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  8. I'm a big fan of the thank you text. It's quick, it's easy, and nothing says immense appreciation like 'thx 4 da kewl prsnt bro lol'

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    Replies
    1. Good idea. I'm going to try limiting my Thank Yous to just hashtags. #thankyou

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  9. The only time I'd really like a thank you note (or e-mail, whatever) is if I've sent something in the mail because then I get paranoid people didn't get it. If it is a person-to-person exchange, a verbal thank you is plenty, I think, but I'll still adhere to wedding/baby gifts notes because I'd rather write them then listen to my mom nag me about it.

    And Aquaman owes Pat a thank you note.

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    Replies
    1. Yeah but those could just be replaced with simple "I Got It" notes.

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  10. Pat, Aquaman sort of looks like he has a fungus and it might be contagious. That's why I don't like him. I think the South invented Thank you notes, and then the Junior League made up all the rules about Thank You notes and taught the rules to all the debutantes, who were told, Go Forth, write polite notes,and Spread your light, not your...screeeeeeccch. Let me back up. I think thank you notes are a lovely gesture and I always write mine within a week's time. And I also always remember to change partners so the poor dears' hearts don't get broken. You guys are kind of awesome. Totally.

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    1. Thank you, Chicken, et al, and I don't just mean that in a formal "Thank You" note manner. I REALLY mean it. From my loins.

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  11. Only a troglodyte would consider not sending a thank you note. Written thank you notes show that you took the time to remember how to write with a pen, find the *#%!&@ stamps and chat with the senior citizens at the post office. That is love, my brothers.

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  12. MOV stole my idea, but I've only written about 2 thank you notes in my lifetime. Though, I've never had a wedding, or kids, or a death close enough to warrant such things. Most of the gifts I do get from people are often countered with an awkward phone call or something.

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    1. We're supposed to send Thank You's when people die now!?!?!

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    2. I stole your idea? THANK YOU for your idea. :) I am putting your starbucks $50 gift card in the mail right now.

      xxo
      MOV

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  13. Guys, I'm just going to say one thing.

    Thank you e-mails.

    And if you blind carbon copy them in, you can just send one and they'll never know they weren't the only recipient!

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  14. I agree with Pat on this one, (except for the part about Aquaman). But then again I have used the same razor for a year and it doesn't have any Machs at all, so what do I know?

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    1. Are you 2 so big and corporate now that you can't reply to us stragglers at the end of the commenting frenzy????? What about my lack of machs??

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    2. No need to worry. We just happen to be out of town the past week or so. We were in meetings with CEOs from Coca-Cola and Chase Bank discussing corporate sponsorships of PCPPP along with intensive ad campaigns on our blog for their brands. But don't worry Michael, readers like you are the most important thing to us. You will always be our number one prio..... hold on I have to take this call.

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  15. I didn't know!! I had to write a bunch of thank you cards for the money I got on my "Jugendweihe"..uh youth consecrate? The government thing when you turn 14? That was the only time I had to write thank you cards...

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