Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Operation Head & Shoulders

...you can go and brush your shoulder off...

- Jay-Z

So. Enough is enough. SJM swears its a Bay area thing. Personally, I think it might be an age thing. Whatever it is - I'm done with people flaking on me. A number of behaviors fall into this rubric. They include:

  • Never RSVPng to invites
  • RSVPng indicating attendance, and then not showing up
  • Calling and canceling shortly before we were to meet up
  • Being consistently late (more than 15-20 minutes)
  • Not getting in touch to firm up tentative plans when the ball is in your court

Because I am done with this behavior* - I am launching Operation Head & Shoulders. Part of the reason that flaking has become so acceptable in this area/age group (depending on your point of view) is that so many people do it - it's like it's not rude any more. Well, I still think it is. So, from now on, when people flake, one of two things will happen. The first time (or when I start to notice a pattern), I will call them out on the flaking. "Calling someone out" involves pointing out that they flaked, and that the onus is on them to make plans next time. The second time someone flakes, well - no more invites.

This goes against my very ethos: invite everyone to every thing. But, there you have it, my attempt to reduce or eliminate flakes.

* This isn't to say that all cancellations etc. are unforgivable. Occasionally, you get jammed at work, or traffic is a bear, or a friend from out of town suddenly plans a visit. Things happen, the question is whether it's a pattern of behavior.


brimful said...

Umm... does RSVPing to EVites count? Because I'm idealogically opposed to that. ;)

I'm SO getting called out.

tamasha said...

This happens in NYC a lot too. Everyone (um, including me sometimes, shh) blames it on the subway. But really, it's the fault of cell phones. They make it so easy to cancel at the last minute, and even easier to not care about being late.

Consistently 15-20 minutes shows me some serious need for the T-Gel, though.

Salil said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
arem said...

omg, you are footnoting your posts! lol -- legal writing strikes again.

Salil said...

I dunno. Maybe it's an age thing, and I'm wrong about it being an SF thing.

I've felt like this for more than a year, which is why I went from uber-extrovert to super-recluse.

I cannot put up with flaky people anymore. I won't spend time speculating on why they flaked, or cajole them into not flaking next time.

I don't mind legit cancellation: you're stuck at work, something came up, you have something that you prioritize higher than hanging out. That's fine, we all do it. But then that's where the cellphone comes in, and I think this is where Maisnon's beef is, too. A great many people simply never bother to call.

I'm not some crazy stickler for episodic phone calls, either. If you know me then you know that I kind of despise the phone. But the phone is great for relaying important information: where you are, where you're trying to go, and if you can't make it there, why you can't, or at least THAT you can't.

Flaky flaky flaky flaky.

chick pea said...

i can't deal with flaky pastry anymore. not worth my time. it's not like we all have time to spare. people know now how i feel because i clearly tell them. oh well. the power of being blunt. sometimes not so good.

wt said...

Flakiness begets flakiness. I know that when I'm in SF or DC for a weekend, I'm only going to have so much time to grab coffee or get dinner with old friends.

So, being cognizant of the fact that people flake a lot, I overload my social schedule, on the assumption that some of my friends will flake once I'm there.

But sometimes this leads to disaster when people DON'T flake. Because then I have to. I can't be in two places at once, and have to flake on someone I would have otherwise visited. It's a cause/effect reaction to the rise in flakiness amongst our generation.

roonie said...

Part of the reason that flaking has become so acceptable in this area/age group (depending on your point of view) is that so many people do it - it's like it's not rude any more.

I feel you. I can't count on anyone for anything as of late, ESPECIALLY after they say they're going to do it!

(note: there are exceptions - mainly exceptional behavior, but not outright exceptions - but that is the rule)

agk said...

i could say a lot on this subject, but i sincerely believe that cell phones are at the root of flakey behavior. email as well. both of these things reduce face to face interaction so much that it's much easier to cancel/arrive late/flake because you've spent more time being (un)knowingly distant from the subject of your shitty behavior.