Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Miss Manners: Shopping Parties Can Lead to Clutter

woman with large red wig and Tupperware apron, holding Tupperware products

The Tupperware party was one of the originals - and now people host home parties to sell everything from candles to jewelry to sex toys.

While they can be a fine opportunity to buy something you truly want, these parties can also lead to unwanted purchases and yet more clutter. Here is an excerpt from a recent Miss Manners column on the subject.
Dear Miss Manners: I hosted one of those home shopping parties for a group of friends and had a very good turnout. However, one thing I noticed was that a close relative of mine didn’t purchase anything.

Now, I know that you shouldn’t have to feel obligated to buy anything at these functions; however, I have attended several home parties for her in the past, and I felt that it was not courteous not to support your host.

... I have become confused on how I should handle the situation with my relative that didn’t buy anything. Should I be annoyed and therefore not go to any of her forthcoming parties?

What do you think would be the correct courtesy going forward at these parties? We all know that they have the gang mentality pressured into them.

Gentle Reader: And your complaint is that the gang mentality didn’t kick in to make your relative feel obligated to buy something she didn’t want?

... A reason not to invite this relative to a shopping party would be that she is not interested in the kind of merchandise you are selling. For the same reason, and not to punish her, you needn’t attend hers.

But what exactly would be the point of your selling unwanted things to each other? ... Wouldn’t you both come out just as far ahead, and not have your houses full of unwanted clutter, if you saw each other over a (freely offered) cup of tea?

[photo from Dixie Longate's Tupperware page]

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