Dec 17, 2008

Sorry, But I'm Off On A Rant!

It's Christmas and I hate to sound grumpy but I discovered something recently that frankly, stunned me. Call me naive, but when people volunteer to participate in a swap, don't you expect that the participants are going to keep their promise and do it?

I participated in Foxglove, Fabric, and Folly's Very Vintage Christmas Swap as my very first swap this year. Heidi did a great job of matching people up and making all the necessary contacts. She's a very organized lady and has a beautiful blog filled with fun things - like her Very Vintage Halloween Swap and Very Vintage Valentine's Swap. Anyway, I had a GREAT swap experience! I was blessed to have had a wonderful swap partner who sent me the most fabulous box of goodies, as posted on December 16.

So here's my gripe. Why, oh why, would anyone go to the host blog and request to participate in a swap if they are not positive they are going to do it???? I just don't get it. Swaps are entirely voluntary. I was disappointed for a friend who participated in the swap and who kept her promise by sending a lovely package to her partner. Not only did she not receive a gift in return, but she has not heard a word of thanks or even a "got it, liked it, hated it, or whatever"! I am just awestruck that anyone, short of a total emergency, would do that. As I was getting ready to finish this post I stopped in to see Heidi's post today and she has actually posted about this very same topic, and quite well I might add. As hostess of the swap she has heard from what sounds like quite a few ladies who have sent their packages off and received nothing in return. Amazingly, she - THE HOSTESS, is one of them! Can you imagine?

Everyone understands when something happens to unavoidably prevent someone from keeping a commitment like a swap. We all know that when push comes to shove, our own family commitments take precedents. But we also know that a situation preventing a follow through does not happen that often. We know in advance of signing up for a swap what our financial and time situation is going to be like for the holiday weeks. As Heidi said in her post today, all one has to do in a circumstance which truly prevents a follow through is to contact the host or the swap partner. I actually had a very urgent situation with my father happening during the entire month of November. Making a 600 mile trip twice in two weeks, having two infusions, and getting sick myself seriously cut into my Christmas prep time. I did have to alter my original plan for the gifts I wanted to send my swap partner, but I did the best I could and got a relatively decent package off to her the first week in December. I definitely got the better end of that bargain - Mary sent me wonderful, thoughtful gifts. I just cannot imagine simply standing up a partner short of a total emergency.

In the stressful world we live in I realize a swap is pretty low priority. Gotta keep things in perspective. We all love blogging or we wouldn't do it. But it's not, nor should it be, our top priority. I'm pretty much done with my rant now...

But think about this one more thing when signing up for a swap...

We do not ALL have loving families to spend Christmas with and trees with gifts underneath. Imagine that YOUR swap gift is your partners ONLY gift.


Technonana said...

I am so sorry... has she tried to email her swap partner to see if they got her gift. I did the ornament swap, and my partner sent hers to me, before I got mine to her, but she has had problems with her computer so she has been unable to post... but that doesn't bother me... I just wanted to be sure she got her gift.

tardevil said...

That's too bad. I didn't participate this year, and now I'm glad I didn't! Just don't need 1 more thing, right now! ;O)

Jan and Tom said...

I'm in TOTAL agreement with you (and Heidi) in this.

It just irks me that people like that, take advantage of "good" people...but, also must face it that there are plenty of people doing this everywhere...not just in Blogland.

One day...when they least expect it, they will be before God and have to answer for all of this.

Patty_Poppins said...

Somehow, someway, someday, the person who did not receive the gift will receive a gift... Somehow, someway, someday.
What I've learned in the past 10 years of my 50 years of my life is that some people can't, for whatever reason, be counted on to follow through with their word. Whatever the reason... selfishness? rudeness? apathy?
Whatever the reason I pity those people.

Kathy at Shocking Pink Thread said...

Finally catching up on my blog reading and I have to say, I totally agree with you! I have done a number of swaps and enjoyed each one until the last. I put a lot of effort into a swap and while I did get something in return, I never received a thank you from my partner, she never posted about it (not that big a deal) but she did gripe during the course of the swap about how she thought experienced crafters/swappers should only be paired with other experienced crafters/swappers. It was a scathing post and I took it personally at the time. The woman was a serious paper-crafting SNOB and thankfully not one of the wonderful women out there in blogland who I really enjoy and respect! So, I appreciate the opportunity to rant as well! Whew. (The other swaps I have done more than made up for the one bad experience though!)

P.S. I sure hope you are feeling better!

Laura said...

I would like to join your rant! I am sorry for your friend. This happened to me 2 years in a row at work and I was a little more than disappointed. I work in a hospital and it's a large workplace so I can see how it might happen once. The 2nd time was a little more than annoying so I refused to participate in the swap this year because of it. I agree, if you aren't going to participate then don't sign up! How rude!

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

I agree with your rant!

I have a funny bloggy story about the same sort of thing. I won a gift and was sent a wonderful pottery barn book.
I couldn't read the return address, No note inside, I couldn't find the email... I absolutely could NOT remember who I won the giveaway from. I lost sleep over not sending that thankyou note (my mom's fault)

Not the same... but it does happen.

Maggie R said...

Hi Mimi..
I totally agree with you . I like to participate in these things and always let my partner know when I rec'd the gift etc. It's fun getting these surprises in the mail....Last couple I was in recently I have not heard a thing as to when it was rec'd if at all!!I spent a lot of time trying to to see if the message was on the Yahoo group but no luck. The other one has not been on her blog for awhile so I am thinking either on holidays or ill. It costs me a lot for postage here in Canada, but neverthele4ss I do enjoy the friendship involved in these swaps....
Ho Hum.... I guess not everyone has a speck of conscience in them!
Merry Christmas..