Stay Classy: Don’t Be Flaky
Urban life can be very busy a lot of the time while being at the same time extremely distracting. Living in the big city affords a person so many different options for things to do out of the house and with so many different people that it can make your head spin. City dwellers tend to have numerous circles of friends due in part to the sheer number of people one gets to meet in a densely populated urban setting and it’s taxing to show face consistently and evenly from circle to circle.
- A person or thing with such trustworthy qualities
- Consistently good in quality or performance; able to be trusted
I’ve noticed a peculiar habit among people who live in big cities like Toronto. They tend to make plans with several of their friend circles simultaneously and then pretty much choose to go to one based on who they think will offer more fun, who is cooler, which venue, how far, chance of getting lucky, etc. While it may seem to make sense to say “well why shouldn’t I choose what’s the best for me to go to?” one must consider the ramifications of promising to be at more than one place and ultimately flaking out. The sentiment those who invited you tend to feel is that you’re unreliable or too good to throw in with their lot for a night. You may not think it’s a big deal but some folks do! The thing is that they may never tell you and therefore you may never be able to tell who minds and who doesn’t mind if you show up.
My rule of thumb is to honour my commitments once I’ve made them. If I tell someone I will for sure be there, they can consider me already there unless something beyond my control has made it impossible to make an appearance. As part of the gentleman’s code it’s pretty standard stuff to not stand a person up, whether it’s a date or a casual night out. The tenet behind this common sense rule comes from the basic principle of having respect for your fellow man or woman. Basically one should never break a promise and furthermore should not make promises that one cannot or does not intend to keep.
I see it happen all the time and I`m sure many of you curse the invention of the “Maybe“ RSVP option on Facebook event pages. It`s even worse in a setting where the host has taken on some degree of personal cost for your expected attendance. For example in the blogging world a PR agency may invite an influential blogger to an event or product launch and thus have to order enough refreshments, put together enough samples, and print enough documentation to account for that blogger`s expected arrival. When a blogger does not show up after agreeing to come it`s almost like a slap in the face to the host who sent the invitation. Highly unprofessional.
This rule does however come with some wiggle room. In light of the rigours of big city life and the fact that typically someone living downtown in a large city will likely have many friends you may sometimes have no choice but to commit to two events in a day. Although it`s still expected that you arrive roughly on time to the event, you may not necessarily have to stay for the whole thing. But don`t just show up, smile, then leave either. I think a healthy minimum is about an hour. The host is sure to understand that you may have other commitments but will be glad you came anyway. Although ideally you should choose one event and stay a while to bond with whoever invited you. You might even make a few new friends…who will also want to invite you to their events.
Oh well, no one said it`s easy to be winsome.