We were both browsing the gift card section at the local grocery store at the same time. He was looking for sporting goods cards, and I was looking for home repair, since my dog had very recently eaten a large portion of the trim in my mom's closet (it's a long story).
We chatted for a minute about the gift cards, and how we use them. He and his wife use them on everything from weeknight fast food runs to a $10,000 kitchen renovation (really). I use them mostly to curry parental favor and decrease the risk of my mother committing caninicide on my poor shelter mutt.
He needed to support himself on the cart as he slowly leaned down to peer at the lower levels of cards. I scooted somewhat impatiently around him as I decided I should also probably buy my parents a night out for dinner, just in case. He talked about all the fuel perks he earned with his gift card purchases. I mentioned that I thought they were a great way to budget.
"Did you find all the ones you needed?" he asked, as I turned to go.
"I did," I said, fanning out the cards, which now included a home improvement store, a restaurant, a coffee shop, and $50 to Macy's, just for kicks.
"Do you want me to buy them for you?"
I paused for the merest of moments, then said, "No, but thank you!"
To be honest, though, as I walked away, I wish I had said yes...you know, just to see.