A Bunch of Economists Talk About Gift-Giving

In the latest Freakonomics podcast for Marketplace, Kai Ryssdal and Stephen Dubner talk to a bunch of economists about the best way to give gifts, and then Dubner gives Ryssdal some gifts. Here’s my favorite of the stories, from Alex Tabbarok:

TABARROK: I made the mistake of getting my wife a Blu-ray DVD player—a really high-end Blu-ray DVD player—for her birthday. This, of course, was something I actually wanted. So on my birthday, she got me a dress.

So sweet.


3 Comments / Post A Comment

Megano! (#124)

That woman is a KEEPER.

la_di_da (#1,425)

Ha, I do that all the time, but I’m slightly more subtle. My sister and I, whenever in the same house, seem to merge closets, so I can’t help it if that really great necklace I got her for xmas is there just asking to be borrowed.

This year I’m giving a favorite card game to 3 totally unrelated people so wherever I go someone will have it to play. I’m super sneaky (but also, they will love this game, for real).

julebsorry (#1,572)

That is HILARIOUS. I actually pick on my husband similarly, and tell him he has a history of “Machiavellian” gifts. For instance, after complaining about me leaving jewelry around the house, he gifted me a jewelry cabinet one xmas. Sure, it was a nice cabinet, but it wasn’t anything I asked for and felt more like a pointed “now you can stop leaving your jewelry everywhere!” note.

Or one year, where I really wanted a pair of nice black leather riding boots to wear to work and around town and to last forever, he bought me a pair of super-high, spike-heeled, knee-high black leather boots. Totally impractical, and I’m near positive he just wanted to see me wearing them more than anything else, lol.

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