tea berry-blue (teaberryblue) wrote,
tea berry-blue

On charity

Good things today: My parents gave me my Christmas presents early, because we are having a lot of people coming for Christmas and it gets crazy. So today, I got mine.

I had been saving up to buy a proper television for a while now-- the TV I've had for the past two years is actually smaller than my computer monitor. Which is fine for TV watching, but not so fine for playing Wii games, which are hard to make out. But due to one thing or another, I had to spend the money I had been saving for a TV.

My parents totally bought me one. So now I have a 32 inch Sony LCD that just barely fits on top of my bookshelf. But it fits, and it's big and shiny and I couldn't be more pleased. I hooked up the cable today; tomorrow's goal is to hook up the DVD player and the Wii.

My other gift is one of those orthopedic memory foam pillows that is like ten times more supporting of your head than a normal pillow. I sneak my parents' memory foam pillows whenever I can because my neck goes out of joint at the drop of a hat, so now I have one of my own. It has a kind of chemical-y smell, which I am hoping goes away? But I figure I can spray some lavender on it or something and then it will be all good.

When I got back into the city, I had brunch, which was Irish Breakfast, with my parents, saw Frost/Nixon, which was very good, and now I think the only movie I want to see that's out is Doubt. And then I went to the grocery store.

They have one of those Christmas trees where you're meant to get a gift for a needy child and bring it to the store? So I went up to pick out a child to get a gift for. I pulled an ornament off the tree, read it...and saw the child in question was asking for a Wii.

Yes, a Wii.

I was completely shocked. I mean, I don't mind spending $30 or 40 on a child I don't know in the spirit of the holidays, but a Nintendo Wii? Most not-needy people I know can't afford to just pop out and buy one of those. When I was a kid, growing up in one of the wealthiest areas in the country, it took my parents three years to save up to buy me and my brother a classic NES. And we were not what one would consider needy by any stretch of the imagination. The Wii I have now my mother bought for me as a thank-you gift for helping out with some stuff for my brother. If my mother hadn't bought me a Wii, I couldn't have afforded it.

So I picked another ornament.

Another Wii.

I picked another ornament.

This one was asking for an XBox.

I picked another ornament.

Nintendo DS.

I picked another ornament.

Another Wii.

I tried a few more, and every single one of them was for an item that cost more than a hundred dollars, most of them being video game related. At this point, my WTFery was so strong that I stopped looking. I just-- I realize that the point of this exercise is to buy these kids something they want and not something they need, but the average middle class kid's parents can't afford these kinds of gifts for their own kids, forget for someone else's. And it's not as if they had multiple requests. Like, I would have been cool with the kids asking for the Wii if it had had another gift under $50 OR a Wii, in case somebody wealthy happened to pick their ornament and didn't mind spending $250. I see nothing wrong with dreaming big. But to me, this just dampened the entire spirit of giving I had been in, to see such extravagant wishes without really any thought given to whether the people willing to give could afford those presents.

So then I went to do my grocery shopping, and I don't remember whether I ever posted about this, but way back in like, March or April, I had some problems with a manager at my grocery store that was a half-block from my then-apartment, and I stopped going there, choosing to walk to the one that was seven blocks away instead. The one with the nasty manager is still closer to my current apartment, and I have been there a couple times when I need to buy heavier items, but I try to avoid it.

Well, that's the store I went to tonight. I left the Tree of Unreasonable Demands and started into the store, only to see Nasty Manager push a row of shopping carts head-on into an elderly customer, who cried out in surprise at being nearly knocked over by a 20-something guy and a lot of shopping carts.

"Watch where you're going!" Nasty Manager shouted at the old guy.
Old guy had happened to be facing the other direction, there was no way he would have seen Nasty Manager coming. He said something to that affect and then told the Nasty Manager that he had nearly run him over.
"Well, that's because you were in the way!" Nasty Manager shouted at him.
"You could have asked me to move," the old man pointed out, very reasonably but clearly getting frustrated.
"I just told you to watch where you were going!" Nasty manager snapped.

At this point, I walked out, in favor of going to the farther-away grocery store. Ugh.

The trouble with Nasty Manager is that because he's a manager, there is never anyone else on staff above him to lodge a complaint with when he is in the store. I am thinking about writing to the regional headquarters for the store. I see no reason why, when so many decent, hardworking people are out of work and would kill for a manager's position, for this guy to be employed instead.
Tags: life, rants
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