RSVP … Maybe?

This was my June blog topic, but never got published due to my being very, very busy!

Pardon me while I vent, but it’s about time that something is said about appropriate behavior when it comes to responding to an invitation.

Recently, I held what has become the Annual Memorial Day / Welcome to Summer / The Pool is Open BBQ, and sent out invitations via e-mail to what I affectionately call the “usual cast of characters”.  It’s an occasion that I look fondly towards each year, as it means that we’re probably not going to have any more of the fluffy white stuff coming down from the skies and covering my foothills-of-the-Adirondacks backyard.

I think Evite (www.evite.com) is fabulous.  I can design and send off cute E-vites (e-mail invitations) in about 20 minutes.  What I don’t like is one of the RSVP (response) options they offer:  Maybe.  Maybe?  I’m sorry, but is that “Maybe I’ll come if I don’t get a better offer?”  Sure feels that way since 11 people responded Maybe and didn’t show up nor pick up the phone or send a text to indicate their final plans.

Where I come from, that’s considered rude.  And bad manners.  And it makes the hostess feel really unimportant.

Consider, for a moment, what that means to this hostess who still has to prepare enough food to cover the Maybes because, God forbid, they might show up and I may not have enough hot dogs.  Or Jerk Chicken.  Or Orzo Salad.  Think about the other guests who have offered to bring hors d’oeuvres, baked beans, cole slaw or dessert and are asking for a final count.  What do I tell them???

I think it’s really inconsiderate when a family of four is a ‘no show’ after responding Maybe.  Or, in one case, Yes (and then not making an appearance)!

If your mother didn’t bring you up to understand the importance of RSVPing properly to an invitation, then please allow me to take this opportunity to enlighten you:  Maybe, without a follow-up of Yes or No several days in advance of the event, is not an appropriate reply.  It is not helpful to the hostess (or her other guests bringing food) in any way.  In fact, it’s really annoying to the gal who will now be eating leftovers every day for the next week!

Do I make my point?

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2 thoughts on “RSVP … Maybe?

  1. You make your point! I do know how hard it is for me personally and for others I know and coach to say NO, whether another engagement has been planned or not. MAYBE allows for waffling because clearly friends don’t want to hurt feelings, friends have trouble saying NO without a thousand excuses, real or made up. Saying NO is probably the biggest difficulty people have, along with the RSVP that never happens, which really sends me into a rant. Beat me over the head, please, if this is me, but I am practicing giving an answer when I have other plans or can’t make it, because truly there really is only YES or NO, and MAYBE can only mean let me check with my partner and calender and I WILL get back to you. Ditch the E-VITE, maybes not allowed.

  2. No, Cate, you were not one of the offenders! :-)
    If MAYBE means “I must check with my spouse or partner”, that is fine so long as you get back to the hostess at least several days prior to the event (for planning purposes). I am with you regarding those who don’t RSVP at all (they are dropped from future invites after the second offense), but it’s even more frustrating when people RSVP YES and then are no shows. THAT’S really bad manners!

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