This past weekend I showed up at a friend’s place late, so I apologized. He told me it was fine. In a moment of epiphany and emotionalism, I emphatically stated, “No, it’s not.”
I suppose I should explain.
The past couple of months work has had a frustrating aspect for me. Deadlines are made, and I’m waiting on people to get me the information I need to meet the deadline. Then, with only a day or two to spare, an e-mail is sent out, requesting and extended deadline. Delightful. And this deadline gets pushed back again, once more with apologies. Sidebar: Once someone apologizes to you three or four times, you start to doubt their sincerity. Back to regular programming: And then, just for good measure, they take a few days longer to get me the information. Then, I have less than one day to make all the changes I need to. Meanwhile, these extended deadlines hold up the whole project, of which I am only a small part. There’s a ripple effect, and now the entire project is behind. It’s like a contractor who can’t seem to get your house done on time, even though he gave himself months to complete it.
I have come to the conclusion that being chronically late is rude. It sends a message to the other party that they are not worth you getting there on time, or completing the project on time. Tardiness, while I can handle it to a certain extent, frustrates me when a person is the head of the tardiness train. They are the one who slows everyone else down. Sometimes, the tardiness train is a short one, and the entire project only lasts a couple hours before you can catch up. It’s those extended tardiness trains, like the ones with a hundred cars that drive me nuts. Especially when they’re moving forward, but slowing down, only to start backing up, and then moving forward again. And it’s back and forth, back and forth, but it never actually goes anywhere! Meanwhile, you’re stuck in your car thanking the fates or God or just plain old luck (if you believe in such a thing) that you happen to have a really entertaining Stewart McLean CD to listen to. And of course, being environmentally conscious, you turn off your car instead of letting it idle.
That’s my rant on tardiness. That’s my rant on rudeness. Now I’m going to go write a post on getting over myself.