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  1. #81
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    We have a way of turning holidays and celebrations into stressful obligations. When we've missed the point, the celebrations aren't worth it.

    I've turned virtually every birthday event/party thrown for me into a plan that I help develop, and into things that end up having nothing to do with my birthday. I don't particularly care about my own birthday but will gladly take advantage of an excuse to take a vacation or get together with people.

    If two people come to the mutual conclusion that birthdays and gift-giving is irrational and not worth the trouble, and they demonstrate that they care about each other ways, who are we to stop them?

  2. #82
    Junior Member Fire's Avatar
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    Sometimes I just think of birthdays as another year closer to death. So when people celebrate them it's like they're celebrating my encroaching demise. Other times I think every New Year's Day should be on the day after your birthday. After all, that's when the new year really started for everyone.

  3. #83
    Senior Member The Great One's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coriolis View Post
    The feast days of the Catholic saints generally correspond to they day of their death.

    As for the OP, there are really two questions here:

    1. Is it irrational to commemorate the anniversary of someone's birth?

    2. Are the things people do to commemorate birthdays irrational?

    One can similar questions about Christmas, Memorial Day, Halloween, or any other external event: is it rational (or worthwhile) to observe it; and how is it most effectively observed?
    That's actually a really good point that you brought up.

  4. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmie Dearest View Post
    You're confusing corporatism with capitalism, first of all. Black Friday is a corporate invention, while we could surely still exist in a capitalist society without flagrant corporatism.

    Furthermore, there's a long wide middle space between corporate capitalism and actual communism.

    I suggest you do some reading about the economies of other nations.



    Starting with China apparently.

    Hoo boy.
    You have to admit though that Black Friday boosts the hell out the economy.

  5. #85

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    When attending someone's birthday anniversary, celebrate that you were able to share another trip around the sun! I'm grateful to be able to be on earth with my friends and family for another year, since every year or so it's likely someone you know is going to die, at least that's how things have fared in my life. So that's how I see it.

  6. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rasofy View Post
    I've come to the conclusion that the price we all pay to feel more special once a year is very high.

    Reasons:

    -It's a lose-lose situation. The other person would usually know how to spend the money you spent on the gift for him much better than you, and vice-versa when your birthday arrives.

    -Imbalances are frequent. Sometimes you give someone a $80 gift on his/her birthday but the person gives you a $20 one. Btw, this doesn't mean it won't remain a lose-lose situation, since his/her reputation in the group will likely be affected.

    -We spend a lot of time wondering about what we should buy, with traffic, waiting for our turn to pay, etc. We could use this time to do a lot of important things.

    -As soon as you forget that a given day is someone's birthday, they start thinking you don't care about them as much as they care about you.


    What do you think?
    In other words, you're saying that ESFJs are irrational?? LOL

    But Seriously, I think a lot of social rituals are irrational in the framework of Economics since most of them neither solve utility maximization problem nor consider opportunity cost and your first three reasons fit the definition of irrationality in Economics pretty well. However, rationality in that sense doesn't matter much to general public or in other disciplines in Social Science as long as the society can function well since most people in this world are irrational in that sense and they need to have social rituals in order for them to be able to live their life.

    So yes. I think birthday rituals are irrational. But it's just rational to play along as long as your life is still surrounded by people. My solution is to be picky about letting someone become a part of your life. So that you don't have to waste too much energy thinking about these rituals. As for me, my sister is an ESFJ and she drains the hell out of me already.
    "It is empty and meaningless that it is empty and meaningless".

  7. #87
    Aquaria mrcockburn's Avatar
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    My birthday is 3 days after Valentine's Day, so it kind of ruins my day. Valentine's Day should be moved to August or something. That'll give people time to stop obsessing over their SO's and focus on ME.

    If I was born an hour later, it'd be 4 days away, and maybe people would comprehend the difference between vday and bday, or shit out the candy hearts they were obviously too bloated from.

    Fuck vd-day.
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  8. #88
    actinomycetes raindancing's Avatar
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    I really hate the obligated gift giving of birthdays... I have four siblings, then with their partners and now they're starting to have kids... and then my husband's side... Having to sort out presents is a constant thing. I hate it. I hate buying some shit present just because you're supposed to. argh. If I'm gonna give someone something I want there to be some value to it, something more than just the value of the object if that makes sense. So what ends up happening is people might get a present from me, they might not. But the chances of it being anywhere around their birthday are about nil. I have no idea what they think about this. Considering most of my family are SJs and pretty full on traditionalists, probably not a lot. But then because it's me they might just write it off as more weirdness.

    As a side note, my husband (an INTP) could care less about giving anyone presents. So if anyone ever gets anything it's because I finally get around to it. (However he is fabulous at giving me presents. Like out of this world fabulous.)
    “Can a man of perception respect himself at all?”
    ― Fyodor Dostoyevsky

  9. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coriolis View Post
    The observances that are truly irrational are all those "Hallmark holidays", occasions promoted by greeting card and gift companies to drum up business. These include everything from Valentine's Day and Mother's Day to St Patricks Day, Secretaries Day, Bosses Day, and on and on.

    Actually, I think one's personal birthday is the better time to honor someone, whether for being a mother, grandparent, a good secretary, whatever. I often take my birthday off from work, and spend the day doing whatever I want. For relationships, forget Valentine's Day and choose a day all your own, like your anniversary.
    Hell to the yes.

    Birthdays are fun becasue they are about celebrating an individual rather than a societal group thing.

    As far as gift giving, never get hung up on who gives what for how much... unless you truly are a selfish bastard.

  10. #90
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    90% of the time I don't buy people presents, in my friend culture gift giving isn't the point of birthdays.
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so

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