Monday, February 11, 2008

People who break your stuff

Maybe I'm overly cautious, or maybe I'm just an asshole (probably both), but I tend not to lend stuff to people. And by stuff I mean stuff that can be easily broken or damaged... like DVDs. I'll admit it, sometimes I even lie about having stuff that people might want to borrow. Why, you might ask? Experience tells me that, apart from a few who are reliable and trusted, most people that borrow your stuff act like it's some freebie piece of junk they can use to play fetch with their dog. Or do something even more destructive with. I've had stuff of mine never returned or returned in an unusable state more often than I care to remember.

What I hate even more than getting something back like this are the lame excuses people come up with. I once lent a 'friend' a CD many years ago, which he returned in a really bad state - the thing was scratched like it had been taken back to medieval times and used as a shield in a jousting tournament. Needless to say, it didn't work anymore. My buddy was nonchalant and said it wasn't his fault as he had lent it to his cousin, who was probably the guilty party. His cousin! Well that made everything better, didn't it? Because when I lent it to him, I obviously meant for him to integrate it into his personal lending library! I guess it's a more original reply than the usual 'it must have been like that when you gave it to me' routine. Then there was that time someone ERASED over my VHS copy of Street Fighter the Movie - is there no decency???

Is it really that hard to not destroy things that other people have trustingly given you under the assumption that you won't treat it like you'd treat a Jar Jar Binks fan at a Star Wars convention? What the hell is up with people? I tend to be organized and take care of my stuff without tossing them here and there; I take even better care of things I've borrowed, because whoever gave it to me was doing me a favour, and it's the least I can do to repay their generosity.

So as a result of these bad experiences, these days I'm more miserly than I used to be. Whenever I do lend something to someone, I always make it explicit that I expect it back in good condition, meaning I don't expect the borrower to give it to their retarded brother-in-law to use as a teething instrument.

Yeah, I just needed to rant.


CyberKitten said...

I *never* lend anything out - especially if its in any way valuable, rare or has sentimental value. Too many times I have had things given to third parties, damaged or simply lost.

No more.

Darwin said...

I so relate to this rant of yours. I take extra care of an item if someone lends something to me. Heck if I borrow a shirt, I make sure it's washed and ironed when I return it. I've had DVDs returned with scratches and that pisses me off too, but what can really get me livid is if my books get returned in a bad state. Once I insisted on being bought a replacement copy as the pages were so dirty and dog-eared I felt queasy to even touch it.

Now, when I lend my books to people I give them a speech: "Don't bend the pages, use a bookmark, don't turn the pages with unwashed hands, don't leave greasy thumbprints all over, don't lose it, don't spill drinks on it, if you do, I WILL make you buy me a replacement" usually does the trick. OK so it shows how crazily neurotic I am but sod that, at least I've got clean books!

Sorry for the long-ish comment, guess I needed to rant too!:)

Antimatter said...

CK, anyone requesting something valuable or of sentimental value would get a Medusa glare from me! Heh heh.

Darwin, you apologising for long comments to me is ironic, to say the least! Funny thing though, I've never had this problem with books - in fact books are one of the few things I would give out quite freely, if there were people who wanted to borrow em! Sadly, there aren't that many people I know who want to read. But yes, I am that neurotic as well in general!

Miedy said...

I know exactly what you meant. Sometimes people just doesn't care how valuable the things are for you. I usually don't lend DVD, CD and books. Because when I bought those at the first place, I plan to "use" that for very long time, but other people doesn't understand that. The only person I ever trusted was one of my co worker, and that's after I checked that she actually taking care her movies and books so well too.

*FilmAddict* said...

Once I lent a came back with a cracked case...the borrower replaced it with a new casing. I didn't say anything but I was not happy. Now I almost never lend anything to anyone for fear they would be return in a bad state. Especially after seeing how people treat their own things. I mean I take great care for my stuff. My dvds a neatly shelved. Their casings are hardly scratched. My books...the pages are never bent...i use a bookmark...I hate it when they even turn yellow due to the tropical climate where I live...and I try my very best to store them where they won't fact some of them looked like they've never been read when they have. I think people should treat borrowed stuff the way their owners treat it. If its perfect...then try very hard to maintain its perfect condition. But if the stuff look like it has been treated like crap...then you don't really have to care for it too much.I know this may be selfish...but really I don't see the need to lend anything to anyone anymore. I take my hard earn money to buy something I like and want...most people I know can afford it themselves and these things are hardly necessities for survival...they are leisure(I can't think of the right word for it) items. Want items...not Need items. If you can't afford it...borrow it from the library...or for dvds rent...or better yet, just do away with it...

:) Now I think I really did a long one here. Sorry antimatter.

Antimatter said...

That's a good point actually - it's not like you're denying them something they really need. :)

Oh, and I hate it when my books yellow as well, although some do look good with that aged look. :D