Happy Birthday!

My birthday isn’t any time soon, but there’s always one thing I hate about it.

In the mail today I received a birthday card and coupon from a local RSL club conglomerate. I sighed. It comes every year and I never use it, and for good reasons.

Let me share it with you:

“Wishing you a very happy birthday!”

It’s not near my birthday, pretty confident they just want to spam me with their advertising as soon as possible, but ok.

“Here’s a special birthday gift to you for being a… member.”

Mmm, you know, it’s written quite sincerely. I’m impressed; looking forward to seeing what it is now. Whatever it may be, sounds like it’s going to be a real treat!

In large print on two coupons, it says “Birthday Dollars” and “$12.50.”

Oh neat, that’s pretty cool! Anything that makes the cost of living a bit more affordable is appreciated!

“Purchase two meals at [the bistro or coffee shop] and receive the lesser value meal discounted up to the maximum value of $12.50.”

Oh, so I can’t spend it at the bar? Can’t buy a beer or even a soft drink? …Okay, I guess that’s fine.

But wait, I also can’t spend it at the really expensive fine dining restaurant you also have in the club? Hmm, a discount on fine food and people sucking up to me would have been a real “special” birthday treat, but okay, sure.

So just the normal “minion” food with everyone else? That’s fine, no that’s great even, I’m excited again. Woot!

But hang on, I have to buy two meals? …But there’s only one person having their birthday?

“You must present your membership card to redeem this offer.”

Huh… I, the birthday boy, have to buy dinner for myself and guests? I’m not as cheery about my “special” treat now.

I guess I can make light of this. Honestly, your meals are so small, that sometimes I’ve dreamt about buying a second meal so I could feel full…

Yep, okay, done! Silver lining, problem solved! I’m getting two meals! Birthday treat is on that table again! WOOT!

So thinking this through… I’ll order two roast lamb dishes ($20.50 each)… that’s $41… plus $3 for extra gravy… making it $44… before I can save $12.50… while eating alone… for my birthday…

Let’s imagine for a moment, I was that desperate and wanted to take them up on that offer…

“Not valid in conjunction with any other offer.”

Wait, so now I can’t use my member discount!?

Two roast lamb dishes (now $23.50 each with no discount)… that’s $47… plus $5 (no discount) for extra gravy… making it $52… before I can save $12.50… while eating alone… for my birthday…

Alright!! Fine!

Let’s imagine for a second that I was so socially deprived, had such a yearning that could only be fulfilled in this conglomerate’s establishment: I’m desperate – a situation so bad as to be impossible to deal with.

Kinda like a meth junkie who hasn’t had a fix in 48 hours: I’m breaking into houses to steal money and getting violent. The cops are hunting me down, but I’m determined the only way they’ll catch me is in an alleyway, passed out with a needle hanging out my arm – read: that’s how desperate I’d have to be in this imaginary scenario as to accept this “special” offer…

Alright… this Saturday night… I’ll get all dressed up… go out to the club and make a night of it!

I’ll spend $52 minus $12.50 on food, there will be so much food and for the first time I’d be so full! But I’d save $12.50, so I don’t care!

I’ll buy my own drinks even! And you know what, it’s my fucking “special” birthday treat – so I’ll sing at the karaoke, dance to the music, play the pokies and Keno too.


“Offer valid Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday only.”

Get fucked arseholes. Perhaps even by jamming your pointless advertising.

Human Relations

19 Practices That Build Trust

  1. Say what you mean and mean what you say.
  2. Make decisions based on core values and principles rather than expediency or short term fixes which do not ensure.
  3. Treat all people with courtesy, sincerity and respect, regardless of their status.
  4. Care about people, their well-being and be empathetic regardless of context.
  5. Avoid using people as instruments or stepping-stones for self-advancement.
  6. Be prepared to be vulnerable, willing to admit your own limitations and mistakes.
  7. Be accountable and assume responsibility for your decisions and actions. Be more concerned about your own accountability than your “rights.”
  8. Admit to and apologise for your mistakes.
  9. Be courageous – confront and take corrective actions when there is a problem.
  10. Under-promise and over-deliver.
  11. Always follow through on your promises, no matter how insignificant.
  12. Always clarify and qualify your promises to make sure that you don’t set up unrealistic or erroneous expectations.
  13. Take great care to maintain and nurture working relationships.
  14. Exercise self-control, and remember that an unkind word spoken in anger can cause irreparable damage to a relationship.
  15. Whenever a misunderstanding occurs, clear it up as soon as possible.
  16. Give honest but constructive feedback.
  17. Trust people first until they prove themselves untrustworthy.
  18. Communicate openly and honestly, and explain your decisions.
  19. Earn people’s trust by building a reputation for being competent and trustworthy.

Source: Schuman, S 2006, “Creating a Culture of Collaboration”, Jossey-Bass, San Francisco, CA

The willingness of a party to be vulnerable to the actions of another party based on the expectation that the other will perform a particular action important to the trustor, irrespective of the ability to monitor or control that other party (Mayer et al., 1995).

Source: Roger C. Mayer, James H. Davis, F. David Schoorman, The Academy of Management Review, Vol. 20, No. 3 (Jul., 1995), pp. 712