The Weekly Rant with Gary Patella

Thoughts and ideas on various grievances that are relevant to everyday life.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

On Vacation Requests

Working every day can certainly take its toll upon a person's well-being, both physically and mentally. In order to ensure some degree of mental health, a break from work is sometimes necessary, even if it occurs very rarely.

Taking some days off from work was frowned upon in centuries past. But nowadays, we have come to realize their importance. In some cases, the days that are not spent working are used simply to relax. But many people like to take a vacation (or holiday) to some location away from home.

The choice of vacation spots is almost countless, and there are a variety of different vacations. People about to set out on a journey are often excited, and tell others about the impending trip. Whenever someone tells me about an upcoming vacation, I say something along the lines of "Good for you. Have a great time!" If they are going somewhere that I wish to visit someday, I may also tell them "I've always wanted to go there."

Unfortunately, many others give a different response. Rather than simply congratulating the person, the parasitic nature of humans comes out. This person's vacation is suddenly seen as an opportunity. Rather than the simple "Have a good time," a person going on vacation is bound to hear "Oh, you're going to ______. Pick me up some ______ while you're there." Whether or not you realize it, this is highly inappropriate.

A person going on vacation should be allowed to enjoy the vacation. He or she should not be inundated with various shopping requests. People go on vacation to get away from work! Now you want to give them some work to do while there? While on vacation, one should have the freedom to go wherever they wish. They cannot and should not be bothered with some stupid checklist. Also, one must consider the fact that to cater to all of these requests is virtually impossible.

If you are one of the many extremely rude and stupid people, thinking that everyone else's vacation is cause for you to hand that person a shopping list, you fail to realize a key point-- you are not the only rude and stupid person. There are many others. So this individual, ready to set out on his or her vacation, is going to receive numerous requests. You won't be the only one handing over a shopping list. Other idiots are sure to do the same. And to fill all of these requests is either impossible, or would involve that person sacrificing the entire vacation in order to shop for others.

But even if someone was willing to sacrifice the entire vacation, what happens to all of the items? The person would probably have to buy an extra suitcase, and therefore pay an extra fee to the airline, just to bring all of the crap back home. Even the most selfless individual would have to be a moron to agree to such a thing. And people being the shady, underhanded, sneaky, blood-suckers that they are, you can rest assured that the individual will lose a fair amount of money catering to these requests.

Recommendations are entirely separate. If you have been to the place before, and wish to tell the person the name of a great restaurant, exhibit, park, or anything else, that is perfectly acceptable. But when these places entail a request, even when there is zero cost, it does impose upon the person. For example, saying "You have to take a picture of _____ for me" is actually a bit of an imposition. The person may not have wanted to go there, even if it is popular. Not everyone is like you, and different people can have different agenda in the same area.

To sum up, a person's vacation is not a means of obtaining something you want from that area. If you want it that bad, you can either go there yourself or order it on-line in this day and age. Requesting only one small thing may seem like nothing to you, but it adds up. If twenty people all request only one small thing, the person will spend the vacation running around like crazy and not relaxing. Simply put, it is rude to make such requests.

So the next time someone tells you about an upcoming vacation, a simple "Have fun" should suffice. Keep your shopping list to yourself!

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