There’s nothing quite like giving a thoughtful gift. It’s not always possible – some people are very hard to buy gifts for. But imagining a gift that is so personal that you could only give to them, and they’d only get from you, planning out the reveal, that’s perhaps the most enjoyable part of any birthday. Truth be told, my favorite birthday memory is probably my brother’s second to last birthday – a ‘sincere’ attempt at making his life better that perfectly relied on an odd in-joke. It’s been difficult to top.
I’d also like to keep track of (for instance) when I first date ladies I like so I can actually keep track of anniversaries. By the time I know the relationship is serious enough to keep track of, I’ve lost track of when precisely we met. I go slow with these things, and at some point even a decently good memory won’t do the trick.
There are also people I’d like to delight that aren’t just those closest to me, which means capturing more gift ideas well in advance. I’d keep a scratch file with ideas for everyone, but I’d like something to tell me which events are coming up so I can get everything in motion in time for the event.
I figured some auto-sorting would make the scratch file more useful, and I’d love to share this tiny system I built with you.
[n.b. Economists sometimes make the argument that gifts are inefficient – you buy gifts the recipient doesn’t want enough to buy for themselves, and receive gifts you don’t want. Reasonably clear thinking – but I try to find the gifts that people would love but don’t even know they want. That’s why they haven’t gotten it for themselves and why my presents should be better than just giving someone cash. shudder]