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You Can’t Have Your Gift Card And Eat It, Too… Wait…

, , , , , , | Working | CREDIT: its_average | June 26, 2021

The company I work for announced a while back that there won’t be a Christmas party this year, for obvious reasons. This is my first year with the company, but from what I’ve heard, the party is a pretty great time, so everyone was quite disappointed. At the event, each employee receives a gift card to a local mall or business. The amount varies, but it’s typically in the range of $50 — nothing to sneeze at, for sure.

It was announced that in lieu of a Christmas party, the company was going to provide a gift box for each of us containing a turkey, some vegetables, a pie, and some other items to round out a nice Christmas dinner. Most of us thought this was a nice gesture, seeing as it would have been pretty easy to simply cancel the party, cite the health crisis as the reason, and save a bunch of money.

One coworker was not happy with this. During our shift last Thursday, the manager phoned us up saying that our boxes were ready for pickup and that we could pack up early. [Coworker] blew up, ranting on and on about what an insult this gift was, how it was beneath him, and how he wanted a gift card or nothing. Keep in mind, he is a grown man, and people were around. It was a really embarrassing sight.

We tried to talk him down, but he continued to say how insulting and demeaning this was and how he didn’t need a turkey. Well, fair enough, you’re one guy and that’s a lot of food. Another coworker of ours, who is a really sweet young lady but unfortunately not very well off, asked if he could pick up his box and give it to her and her family. He refused, saying that he wouldn’t touch it out of principle. The food bank was also out of the question.

He even phoned the manager back to tell him what he had just told us. The manager was rightfully pissed and sent him home for the day, telling him that by refusing to pick it up today, he was forfeiting everything and that he couldn’t backtrack later on. He agreed and stormed off, so the rest of us went off to pick up our meals.

Out of the four of us on the crew that day, two of us had been forced to go to the food bank at least a couple of times in the past few years, so listening to this guy go on about how a free meal wasn’t good enough for him had us rather angry, especially considering the state of the world right now.

We showed up at the shop and the gift box blew our expectations out of the water. A twenty-two-pound turkey, bags of vegetables, an apple pie, stuffing, gravy, and cranberry sauce, all locally grown and handmade, complete with a baking tray, meat thermometer, and instructions on how to prep and cook everything. And for a little icing on the cake, tucked into the corner of each box was the $50 gift card that our coworker had been ranting on and on about. His gift box, complete with the gift card, ended up going to the food bank after all.

This story is part of our Best Of June 2021 roundup!

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