Was I Out of Line?

First thing-I am not a sports fan. Og knows why , but I just never had the interest. Anyway, last year, a business associate gave me two tickets to a Boston Celtics game. It was considered a big game(they were playing LA), and I told the guy “no thanks”. He was insistent that I take them-he said words to the effect of “you’ll love it”. I told him, “look, I really don’t feel like driving in to Boston and getting bored for two hours”. Anyway, I took them, and gave them to a co-worker, (he took his son -both basketball fanatics, and they had a great time).
A few weeks later, I ran into the guy again, and he asked me about the game-I told him that I gave the tickets away-he was pissed off. So, I fired back at him:“I told you I wasn’t interested”. Was I out of line?:smack:

Resistance is futile.

(no it’s not)

I don’t think you were out of line but you could have been more diplomatic, it sounds like. But hey, he gave them to you–after you already tried to decline on the grounds of no interest.

Some years ago my boss gave me four tickets to a basketball game. My husband had a relative in town and immediately pounced on them and started calling his friends. I insisted that he at least take our sons. It turned out that these were really good seats–the ones where you’re sitting right on the floor and somebody hands you sheets of paper with the stats at halftime. My boss knew I didn’t go because he was right there (I didn’t know he would be)–but he also knew that my sons got a HUGE kick out of seeing a basketball game from the sidelines like that. So he was okay with it. Just so I didn’t scalp the tickets, I guess.

I think you were honest and I applaud that.

However, what you haven’t told us is the attitude you took about this whole thing - if you were pissy and responded to the guy in a jerkish way, then you were out of line. If you were polite and just firmly stated that you weren’t interested and therefore gave the tickets to some people who would get a lot more enjoyment out of it, then you weren’t out of line.

To be honest, re-reading your post, it reads like the jerkish former but that may just be your annoyance showing in your post. Just because he was a jerk in giving you a gift you didn’t want, doesn’t mean you have to be a jerk back.

Definitely. You should have scalped them. What were you thinking just giving them away like that?

Recently, due to a surgical procedure I still had not fully recovered from I had to leave work and 2 co-workers covered for me: one on the night I had to leave, and the other on the next night.

Because I wanted to show my appreciation I gave them both cash-type gift cards along with a nice thank you card.

Here’s what happened:

Co-worker number one left them on my desk, saying she didn’t want them and co-worker 2 left me a note thanking me for the “gratuity”, but that he was going to pass it on to someone needy (this was right around Thanksgiving).

Yeah, I know they were getting paid for coming in and working for me and the gift cards weren’t necessary, but I wanted to thank them for the extra effort on my behalf.

I don’t think the OP was necessarily out of line, but he might have asked if he could pass them along at the time they were being given.

As far as my own situation, I kinda got a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach and still don’t know how I should have handled the result of the refusal of my gifts.

I guess I would like to have been asked by #2, but of the two of them, his is the one who’s action bothered me the least. At least he kept the thank you card.


You can save yourself a lot of disappointment by not attaching expectations to someone else. Let go.

ralph, you sounded a little bit snarky, but since you made it very clear that you weren’t interested and he still gave them to you, you were perfectly within your rights to pass them on. Don’t know why he thought he had the right to control you after you took them.

As a good rule of thumb, in this life you get to make decisions for you and other people get to make decisions for themselves. No one is here for the purpose of meeting your expectations.

That not something out of some self-help book. It’s just the fair thing to do. It’s common sense. It makes marriages better. It saves friendships.

I think the diplomatic thing to do was to say that on the day you were stricken with projectile vomiting and explosive diarrhoea and gave the tickets to a friend. The magic phrase projectile vomiting and explosive diarrhoea is the key to a short conversation.

Failing this listen to Zoe.

I think you did the right thing - two people who really enjoyed themselves got to go.

QM, you can see here no one likes pushy gift-givers, and I really would be uncomfortable taking a gift card from a coworker merely for covering a shift. A verbal thank you and a promise to buy a drink or something in the future would be enough, or bring in some candy or other consumable. But to actually go out and buy a gift card? I’d feel obligated and uncomfortable.

[Murphy Brown]
We’ll tell them you had food poisoning. It comes on quick, it’s over quick, and nobody wants to hear the details.
[/Murphy Brown]

I like it the other way around (projectile diarrhea and explosive vomiting). It makes you more of a danger to the public.:smiley:

Anaamika: :rolleyes: Wherever did you come up with that?:wink:


And I do not agree, since the nature of the cards were that they could have been used for a drink or consumable, and because of the shifts I work (only weekends) and the hours (nights), I never *see *any of my co-workers unless there’s a staff meeting - and those are few and far between. No, I think I did the right thing: Those who know me know of my generous nature and two 10 dollar cash cards were not over the top, IMHO.

We’ll leave it at that, but I take exception to the word “pushy”. :frowning:


To clarify my posting: The first part of that next to last reply was for dontask.

The second was a reply to a completely different post - I just combined the two - which made it seem like the whole thing was directed at one person. My bad. Still sleepy from working.


Sometimes the nicest thing you can do for someone is to let them be nice to you. I forget where I heard that - some time years ago - but I’ve found it to be so incredibly true. If they decided that an appropriate way to show appreciation is to buy a gift card - then so be it.

That is not to say I haven’t been in the position of feeling that someone’s gesture of thanks makes me feel awkward in some way - but knowing that they felt it perfectly appropriate makes a big difference.

Re: Scalping tickets:
In MA “scalping” (reselling tickets at a profit) is illegal, and if you are caught, you forfeit the tickets on the spot. The speaker of the MA house just resigned over this issue-his friend was lobbying for changes in the ticket reslling laws.

I tend to get my back up when people push me after I’ve been polite and they mistake my politeness for being a pushover, so I would say no, you weren’t out of line - if dude didn’t want to hear about you giving the tickets you didn’t want away, he should have listened when you said you didn’t want them. I think the only thing I might have done differently is made a point of saying how much the people who went enjoyed the game, father-son bonding, blahblahblah - make your associate look like an ass if he says anything after that. :slight_smile:

Many years ago I did a huge job for a customer of the place I was working in at the time. I went way beyond the “call of duty.” The guy knew that I collected stamps (at the time), and that I was particularly interested in Japanese stamps. After I completed the job, he gave me a folder containing some very old Japanese stamps. I protested that I was just doing my job, but he wouldn’t take no for an answer. I took the stamps home and looked them up in my catalog. They were worth many thousands of dollars! The next day I again tried to give them back, but the guy insisted.

Years later, I needed the money and tried to sell them . . . only to discover they were all counterfeit.