Beware of Free Gifts You Give Away!

Yesterday was my sister’s birthday. She loves to tinker about the house, fixing this, repairing that. When I recently received an email from Staples offering a free 33 piece “quality” tool kit (worth $39.99) if you bought over $100 dollars worth of office supplies, I thought “Hey, a birthday gift! for my sister! And it’s FREE!”

Now you may think me cheap… but I’m not— not exactly cheap… more frugal when it comes to some things, and then totally extravagant when it comes to others… and I’ve been known to give gifts to others that I have received as promotional gifts from vendors, i.e. Gevalia coffee who is happy to give you coffee pots, coffee containers, cups, thermos kits, etc if you would only subscribe to their coffee service.

Anyway…here was a perfect gift for my tinkering sister and it was FREE. I didn’t need it and I thought she would like it. so I decided to give it away. Now, understand, it wasn’t the only gift I was giving. I had a couple of other items in the birthday bag that I had purchased. But I happily wrapped up the “quality” tool kit and stuck it in the bag with the other items. I was going to tell her it was a freebie…. I really was. But didn’t get the chance. My other sister in whom I had confided, happily burst forth with the information just as the birthday girl was unwrapping the tool kit.

“You know, that tool kit was a freebie! Chap (she calls me Chap) got it for FREE from Staples!” I could have kicked her.

If I had only had a chance to explain first! As it was, the birthday girl just laughed it off, but I was a bit humiliated, and a bit annoyed at my second sister who had revealed the sordid truth. — But it was a good thing the truth came out when it did, and here is the crux of the matter and the reason you should never give away freebies without careful consideration: My sister proceeded to open the tool box to check out all the “quality” tools and there tucked in between the hammer and pliers was a note from Staples.

“We hope you enjoy this FREE gift from Staples. Thank you for being a great customer.”

GAWD! The free gift was sure to be found out no matter what!!! What was Staples thinking?

Anyway, we all laughed, my sister loved her other gifts, and all is well in the family. But let this be a warning. DO NOT GIVE AWAY FREEBIES TILL YOU CHECK INSIDE THE PACKAGE or you will be discovered or revealed as the cheapo you are — not that I’m cheapo.

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Cheapo Peepo
Cheapo Peepo
12 years ago

Oh the lessons that we learn at such a late a time of life!!! I’m sure that she will put the tools to good use and you will laugh over this often!

Stay cool… heat index here today is 112… thank GOD for A/C!

Reply to  Cheapo Peepo
12 years ago

Thanks for your kind words Peepo! And tell me you’ve nevah done such a thing yourself? Hmmmmm?

12 years ago

It truly is the thought that counts…when you were offered the free gift you thought of me…that’s all that really matters…you actually purchased the item with your being a customer of staples…had you not spent money with them you would not have received the free gift…and trust me, nothing is ever really free. You could have gone one step further and given me a used tool set!!