Though usually laid back with these things, I need to take a moment:
Maybe I’m wrong, but to the best of my knowledge, I have yet to find a review on an experience with gift registries from the perspective of a person who is actually doing the buying, and not one who just zapped that little scanner gun all over creation, resulting in some poor soul having to carry around 10+ pages in search of the right gifts, while the eager beavers have already “fulfilled” the best ones. So let me be the first.
I completely understand that whatever occasion you may have coming up that requires registering is exciting, and seriously? The registry is one of the best parts! Who are we kidding? I absolutely LOVE shopping for these things… but just make sure you’re registering at the right places.
Case-in-Point: I recently went shopping in a popular, nameless store, and picked up a registry for one out of the gazillion bridal showers we have coming up. (Ok, a little dramatic I know, but you get the point). Immediately, I noticed that they didn’t have one of those handy computers there that print everything out for you, so the girl at the front desk had to look it up for me on their little “public computer.” She then had to call a lady in the back office to look up the same website we already had in front of us, have her print it out, call another girl to go get it and bring it back to us. Headache. While I was waiting, I kept staring at her shoes. They were just the strangest shade of yellow, and I wondered if they were meant to be that yellow, or did the dye machine have a hiccup? Not that they weren’t fun…just very distinctive. (This is a perfect example of how my mind usually wanders).
-Now to the bride and groom, if you happen to be reading, this in no way reflects upon you. You didn’t know… I blame the companies entirely. But isn’t the whole point of a registry to simplify the process for the guests who are buying gifts?
Once I had my list, the desk girl gave me a direction to head. I was in luck; everything could be found “in-store.” So I began my search. Finally found an item. I couldn’t be certain, since the picture on the paper is about the size of my pinky nail. I tried to read the forever-long item number. Five minutes later, we had a match. The sheet said it was on sale. I looked up. Guess what… it wasn’t not on sale. So I skipped to the next one. I always like to get more bang for my buck when it comes to shower gifts…I tried towels. The registry doesn’t even tell me what brand. It just said to get four in “coastal blue”. So I scavenged through all the racks of towels and naturally they didn’t even have the color name listed. How do I know whether teal or dark blue is “coastal blue?” Are we talking the coast of Maine, or the coast of Mexico? What if I was colorblind? I left that aisle. I searched “plush throws,” (of course they only carried fleece… I just wish they weren’t little liars), hand mixers, mixing bowls, seasonings, and pretty much every other household item you could think of. If it was on the list, it wasn’t in the store. The list said 9-piece organizer. The store only carried a 4 piece. Do I buy it anyway? It felt like a downgrade. I wanted to bail, but then I felt bad because I couldn’t sneak out without passing the girl that went through that 9-hour process just to get me the list, and here I’d done nothing with it. But I was tired, hungry and getting slightly aggravated. Then I had a full conversation in my head wondering why I felt bad in the first place? I couldn’t help that I searched and searched until I was blue in the face, all to no avail. Luckily, she wasn’t even at the desk, so I slid out. Okay, I figured I would try store numero dos. They would have what I needed.
Fast-forward to several hours later. [Gathering composure]. I don’t even have the temperament to go into what that process was like. I kid you not, I had searched for at least 6-7 items on that list, and guess what? Nada. I was about ready to ram my cart into something, so I finally said FORGET IT! I was shopping Jessica-style, and if they didn’t like the gifts, tough. (I don’t really mean that.) So I went with the age-old laundry basket filled with cleaning supplies and a few kitchen must-haves (unless they had it). I had the cashier ring everything up. I got my total. Ouch. Apparently cleaning supplies can add up. I asked her for a gift receipt. She told me in order for that, we would have to void everything we just scanned and do it all over again, because I was supposed to tell her in the beginning. Well, excuse my ignorance. It was my dinnertime and my feet were about to fall off, so I told her to forget it, it wasn’t worth her trouble. Whelp; guess there won’t be any returning of these goods.
There you have it. And this is a true story, without any exaggeration whatsoever.
I’m certainly not bitter or anything…