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Broke-Ass Etiquette: Gift Exchange

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Q: Dear Half-Price Headliner,
If someone unexpectedly gives me a holiday gift, am I obligated to return the favor?

A: Short answer: no. Longer answer: that’s sort of up to you.  If you’re the type that will stay awake at night crushed by the guilt of a one-sided gift exchange, then by all means, gift away.  And then call your therapist.  Kidding.

If not, listen up.  I am very anti-crap-gift-giving.  Shelling out 'œbackup' tchotchkes just for the sake of keeping up with the Joneses is a hassle for all involved and a strain on your wallet.  A gift, for any occasion, should be thoughtful, meaningful, and tailored to the individual as much as possible.  Otherwise you’re just swapping shit.

The best thing to do, in my opinion, is to be grateful, sincerely thank them, and remember the kind gesture.  Next time they need a cat-sitter, volunteer.  Pick them up from the airport.  Whatever.  But only if you want to. Guilt should not be a factor.

Got a question about how to be a polite Broke-Ass? Email Half-Price Headliner with your queries and get schooled on how to be proper-like.

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Alison Lambert - Half Price Headliner

Alison Lambert - Half Price Headliner

Ali was born and raised in the Wholesome/Creepy capital of the world, Salt Lake City, UT. Once she was old enough to blow that pop stand she escaped to the place that was the anti-SLC: The Peoples Gay-public of Drugifornia aka San Francisco (holla 30 Rock!). You can now find her throughout this glorious city slurping Pho and scheming with her best friend Pinky doing what they do every night; try and take over the world.