Presents

Audience

This page is mostly for my family, who often want to know what I want for my birthday or other occasion.

What to Get Me

There's almost nothing I want that I don't have, which make it really hard to buy me presents :-) I'm also opposed to the rampant consumerist that dominates American culture.

I'm perfectly happy getting a thoughtful "card" which can be a plain old piece of paper folded in half or a funny card you find online and print out. It's the words you write and the thought behind the card that matter!

If you want to go all out, I'd like the gifts of appreciation and self improvement: include in your home made card one thing you appreciate about me, and one thing you think I should do better. I know that this isn't easy! I figure you can do it in the time you'll save by not shopping for something. But I'll be perfectly happy to get a card without these things.

If you're sure that I won't believe that you love me unless you spend some amount of money, please donate some money in my name to a Give Well top rated effective charity. But don't give them my email or snail mail addresses since I don't want their junk mail :-)

This is where you should stop reading.

Buying Me Something

I've included this section because I know that it takes time for us to change our habits, and the habit of gift giving is deeply ingrained, so you may find it too uncomfortable to not buy a gift. I encourage you to work on it though.

If you still think you have to buy me something, experiences are great. They last a lifetime, don't take up any space, and someone told me that research shows that they tend to lead to more happiness than getting stuff. For example, Leat and I would love to do a trampoline class together. Another great idea is to get a game or something fun that we can all play together.

A more long term gift is buying me my time by giving me money for my financial independence stash. Once I accumulate enough money in the bank, I will "retire" in the sense that I'll only do things I totally want to do and I'll be free to pursue my happiness and world improvement full time.

If you're Noam, I'll be happy if you keep buying ridiculous things that make everyone laugh a lot, and then I can give them away. I'll also be happy if you don't.

But really, just stick with the card :-)

Misc

I have an amazon wishlist of stuff but I don't actually want most of that any moreAlmost everything on my wishlist is books which I now get from the library. It turns out that the library has books for free and I don't even have to store them when I'm done reading them! If I read a library book and decide that I like it so much that I want to own it, then I buy it.

If you'd like to hear someone else's perspective on this, Mr Money Mustache has a great article.

Thanks for thinking about buying me a present!
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