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Maybe. The new No. - It seemed like a good idea at the time... [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
terribleturnip

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Maybe. The new No. [Oct. 16th, 2012|08:18 pm]
terribleturnip
I don’t have the Facebook hatred that some people do.

Except for the fact that someone tagged my house as Scary Perry and apparently it’s impossible to undo, but I’m not molding that into hatred yet. And I completely don’t understand the need people have to let strangers know where the hell they are at all times. (Which is how my house got tagged as the location for a PRIVATE PARTY that is now all over the intrawebs. Thanks.)

I mean, if the government wanted to track you like that, you’d lose your nut. But instead you happily tag yourself like some kind of self-radio-collared puma, and here’s a newsflash, the government has access to Facebook and is grateful you’ve made it so easy to track your movements. As do all the advertisers that chuckle with glee every time you report where you are or what you buy, because boy, they really used to have to DIG to get that info and now they just have to write a check to Facebook now and then….or access it in ways that Facebook clearly can’t hide well enough, or they’d be making a profit. But anyway, don’t let my inner cynic get you down.

It’s a tool, my friends, one I find handy and repurpose as best I can to serve my own needs, carving out edited lists of friends, so that I don’t have to confront expletive I have no interest in seeing, cruising the unedited list occasionally, just to remind myself just how scary the general populace is and how expletiveing mind-numbingly boring and NEEDY they all are.

I steadfastly refuse to “like” anything that’s going to just use me as a marketing tool, unless I actually want to be a marketing tool. I will not whore myself for a coupon, thank you very much, but I will totally whore myself for small businesses, craftsmen, artists and writers that I think are worth supporting.

I understand intellectually and emotionally that every time someone “likes” your status or comments on your status, you get a small hit of oxytocin, and some people are little junkie rats, pressing the lever, posting damn near every breath they take so that they can be validated and get a hit of happy hormones.

I have a flower on my desk at all times and periodically look at animal pictures, so while I’ll feel slightly superior that I don’t need the approval of others to make me happy, I understand that’s a pretty flimsy construct, since here I am posting on LJ, mining the tiny group here for approval. So, let’s just say I’m SELECTIVE about who I need approval from, shall we?



But it’s pretty handy for pictures, for connecting, and for arranging social events, so I can handle its foibles. Except that it’s really completely breaking down the whole concept of RSVP, which, like the Sub-Saharan Cheetah, was already teetering on the brink of extinction. Has “maybe” become the new “no”? And that, my poppets, is pissing me off. MAYBE.

To be clear, I’m not talking about those events where someone’s invited pretty much everyone on their friends list to some gig they’re doing. I mean, anyone who expects anything more than positive rsvp’s for things that have 75 or more attendees is suffering an overdose of fantasy.

I’m talking about a party or event where you have invited a reasonable amount of people – numbers that would fit on a schoolbus, if you will, personal invitations, where you’ll know all of the faces/names of the people. There are the people who don’t reply at all, ever. Which okay, if I know you’re never on facebook, then I’m a moron for inviting you that way, other than to perhaps warn other people that you’ve been invited. But “maybe”?

Here’s what “maybe” means as an RSVP: it means you’re not sure yet. Not: yeah, I don’t think so, but I don’t want to be mean and say “no”. Saying “no” to an RSVP is not insulting, it just means you can’t come. It’s actually expletive POLITE. Politer than saying “maybe” when you actually mean “not unless all other social activities fall through, my Game of Thrones disk doesn’t arrive in time and Safeway is out of Chunky Monkey.” Because you actually can say “no” and then ask your host later if it would be all right if you come anyway, because you’ve made up a more socially appropriate excuse for changing your mind than the one I just proffered.

“Maybe”, for the RECORD, means that you have not decided yet and that……drumroll….at some point BEFORE the event you will make up your EXPLETIVE mind. And CHANGE your rsvp to reflect “yes” or “no”. And then, if you said “yes”, then barring fever, vomiting, uncontrollable bleeding, flaming vehicles or some other disaster, you will show up. I don’t have energy to waste on a rant about the careless “yes” people, who will say yes, but actually mean maybe, depending on whether I get a better offer, and then not show up, nor call in advance to excuse themselves. I might give myself a tumor.

For those of you frantically trying to access your events page right now and update your rsvp to an event I may have invited you to, or are sorely regretting your lameass response to the last one I invited you to, rest assured, this diatribe was actually inspired by responses to other people’s events, and Outlook events here at work, where “tentative” as a way of saying “no” without being offensive…if by saying “without being offensive” I mean “passive-aggressive in a particularly dickish manner”, is PANDEMIC.

And that, my friends, is how I get stuck going to events I don’t want to go to – because the people I want to see all said “maybe” or “yes” so I sign up “yes”. And then I show up because I COMMITTED. And I'm from New England and by Cod, that's what we DO when we accept an invitation. It's a sacred expletive trust, an honor, because unlike SOME parts of the country, if we tell you that you should come back for another visit sometime, we actually expletive MEAN it. Or we wouldn't have said it. Huh. And we get branded cold and unfriendly, while southerners with their shallow, meaningless "y'all come back, hear?"'s would EXPLETIVE themselves if you actually DID come back. Unless they're drunk. In which case, they don't mind you coming back, but you'd better have brought more bourbon.

So I show up because I said I would. And then I am the only one THERE. In a room filled with three other people I can't stand. You expletives.

On a brighter note, I’ve finally accepted that it wasn’t just the dust on site this weekend, or allergies, I have whooping cough, or pneumonia or some other barking seal sickness. Yay.

That makes this week, this week with a single free evening in which to clean the house for a Halloween meeting the next day, unpack-wash-dry-repack all costuming and dishes, pay bills, mow lawn and do a host of other things…expletive impossible. Flat out impossible. Yay. Grass up to my knees? Tumbleweeds of cat hair floating through the Halloween meeting? Dirty, funky costuming this weekend? Oh, let’s just take to my bed and go for the trifecta!

To make it better, here’s a glimpse into the joys of my job: I have a client who wants to get a logo’d cup. I think the supplier is already making the cup, because I see a product number that looks exactly like the one we need, with an imprint suffix and description that lead me to believe this is the client’s logo. Except sometimes the logos have a specific location name scribed beneath them, so I need to find out whether this is generic logo or location-specific. Four e-mails later, the supplier finally answers that they make a paper cup for this client, but not plastic.

Despite the fact that I gave them the product number of the plastic cup suspect. So, I repeat – so, hey, what’s THIS cup then? Isn’t it plastic cup with client logo?

And four e-mails pings later, they reply “This is an MTO and we have 23 cases on hand.” And my patience with everything ran out this past weekend and I’m only coasting on fumes, so I reply “what the hell is MTO and more importantly, does it have the client logo and is it generic or property specific, which was the question I’ve been asking for two WEEKS.” And they reply “MTO means made to order, which means we don’t stock it.”

And the only thing keeping me nailed to the seat is that I can’t decide which is the bigger absurdity: that they have STILL failed to answer a pretty simple question; or that, with 23 cases on the floor, they are clearly STOCKING AN ITEM THEY DON’T STOCK.

AUGH. ::Deep Breath::

But I’m a professional, so I replied “Someone needs to go out to the floor then, and send me a PICTURE of the cup you’re NOT stocking, because if I have to ask one more time whether this is a generic or specific logo, I swear I will have an embolism and it will be all your fault.”

nd when they ask me if they should start shipping to the client, I’m going to say:

Maybe.
LinkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: redsteve
2012-10-17 12:44 am (UTC)
Ah I remember the old days when corporations had to rely on spy-bots and infosquitoes to get your personal data...
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[User Picture]From: sequinedlovenun
2012-10-17 02:21 am (UTC)
1. I say maybe because I usually don't know if i'll be in the area at any given time.
2. I'll always bring bourbon, or at least wine
3. you make me laugh so hard I ink.
4. Funky garb is awesome!
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: dreamtigress
2012-10-17 03:07 am (UTC)
The art of the RSVP, the manners it takes to always respond to an invitation, these things are slowly disappearing like the ice caps. It drives me crazy when people just don't respond at all, so Maybe is definitely better than no response, but I am with you on the overuse of Maybe instead of No.
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[User Picture]From: sestree
2012-10-17 11:05 pm (UTC)
I am notorious for that - I ignore a ton of invites but they're also from people who bloody well know we can't travel like that so it's like we're on a junk mail mailing list or something.

It's only the ones where I know they thought do we or don't we invite them that I respond to.
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[User Picture]From: sestree
2012-10-17 01:44 pm (UTC)
No is much easier because the chances of us showing up anywhere are dwindling daily. However it does pose a problem on those rare good days. Do we crash or just hang out on the sofa?

...and you know the answer to that one
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[User Picture]From: dreamaastrid
2012-10-17 08:18 pm (UTC)
If I am not coming I reply no. In fact, I replied no to an invite this week as I know we will be out of town when the event occurs.

If I plan on coming - barring illness or extreme weather I will answer yes.

If I would love to come but need to check with the spouse and/or verify the kid's schedule and have a work/family commitment I'm trying to squirm out of I will reply maybe and then update with a yes or no as soon as I get our schedule nailed down.
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[User Picture]From: giantsloth
2012-10-18 12:08 pm (UTC)
It's interesting to see how different folks use Facebook. I think RSVP etiquette is breaking down precisely because most of the events on Facebook are "invite everyone to see your band/art opening/burlesque show/circus act/play/whatever." Of the ~30 event invitations I've got right now on Facebook, I think maybe one of them is actually a small social event for actual friends, not a spamblast. So my default now is to mostly ignore the whole rigamarole of Yes/Maybe/No for events on there.
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[User Picture]From: pyratelady
2012-10-19 01:09 pm (UTC)
Yes, the obvious spamblasts annoy the crap out of me. Clearly whomever invited me to see their band perform at a bar in New York CITY on a Thursday night did not give it the 10 seconds of thought it would take to realize that it's impossible for me to go, so why should I take 10 seconds of my time to answer?
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[User Picture]From: ferlonda
2012-10-22 11:37 pm (UTC)
My answer is "delete."
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[User Picture]From: ferlonda
2012-10-22 11:36 pm (UTC)
Heeeeeeeeee..........

You made me laugh at least twice in every paragraph- a new high.

Thanks, as usual!
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From: museinred
2012-10-24 05:42 am (UTC)
Now I feel horribly guilty, but in my own defense I hit maybe because I'd really like to go, but health and family issues have made me either miss completely or reschedule so many things this year that I hesitate to make hard commitments when I never know until the moment arrives whether life and the universe will co-operate. I hadn't really thought about how that looks from the other side. Not sure what a better solution is, but at least I'll give it some thought.
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[User Picture]From: terribleturnip
2012-10-24 12:34 pm (UTC)
Look, there are some people who are going through stuff and you know it, so you understand why it's "maybe". And when you invite a big group, maybe is not a big deal. A small group....as a host, "maybe", especially at the beginning, is not a problem -- it is nice when people update their "maybe". Especially if you're trying to do some kind of headcount around food or drink.

What I'm mostly bitching about, though, is people who are checking off "maybe" when there's really a snowball's chance in hell that they'll come. They're devaluing the "maybe" for good reason.
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