Holiday PSA: Evite Etiquette

Quick Quiz:  When you get an invitation that requests an RSVP, do you:

  • Immediately check your calendar and respond accordingly,
  • Wait until the last minute to make sure something else doesn't suddenly pop up,
  • Something in between depending on who/what the sender/event is.

Most of us fall in that last category myself included. But I always strive, though sometimes fail, to be classy and graceful in my response, especially when the answer is "no."  Unfortunately, not everyone takes the time to be considerate of the hosts feelings when it comes to responding, or not responding, to an invitation.

EVITE Pet Peeves

Some people receive an EVITE, click on the URL, check their calendar and RSVP appropriately. These are healthy, well-adjusted people and I fear I don't know many among the legions of people I call my friends. For others, responding to an EVITE seems to require an act of Congress.  As if responding too soon  might be perceived as too available.

Some people RSVP’ing by not RSVP’ing.   They figure you'll figure it out when they don't show up.

Others like to play the I'm too busy to even open the EVITE (probably because they know or EVITE lets the host know when someone has viewed the invitation). Unless you are working on the cure for Cancer, putting the finishing touches on your cold fusion generator, or solving World Hunger, your busy isn't any more important than anyone else's busy, Chester.

Finally there is the too-good-for-EVITE person. They get the EVITE, click on it but instead of just saying yes|no|maybe they send you an essay about why they cannot attend. Seriously, please get over yourself and quit being a drama queen.

People tend to overshare on their No-RSVPs. In some cases, they feel the need to come up with a good excuse like the dog ate their homework. In other cases, I would say they were raised by wolves, except that would sully the good reputation of wolves.  Listen, I know your probably thinking that it's just a stupid invite to a dumb party and you don't owe the host anything.   But that is what is wrong with society today.  This cavalier attitude.

Actually, you owe them a modicum of thoughtful consideration for their effort.  And not just the kind that doesn't require getting up off the couch.  Even if the invite is from someone you barely know, who perhaps just invited the "whole group" so as not to leave anyone out, the polite, gracious thing to do is to decline without hurting the hosts' feelings or insulting their intelligence.

Look at the following two responses:

Sorry, we can't make it. Dennis is off hunting this weekend and my family and I are celebrating my grandmother's 92nd birthday. Have a fabulous party and thanks for the invite!! Happy holidays!!!

Would be fine if she skipped the part from Dennis to birthday. It's extraneous, unnecessary and a much classier response without it.

Sounds like fun, unfortunately I'll probably be packing for my end of year getaway. Hope the tree turns out fantastic!

Okay so you're missing a party because you have to pack? What he's really saying is that he's so busy that the only time he has to pack a suitcase is this particular evening, it's very understandable but at the same time, you're saying a suitcase outranks a party.

Sorry,  can't make it. Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

This one is perfect. Can't make it, no need to mention why not. Wishing you well.

Here's a clue hint: Unless you are trying to not-so-subtly send the message that you want to be left off the invite list next year, simply say something like "thank you for the invite but unfortunately I cannot make it" or "so sorry to miss it."

Unless you are out of town, posting what you are doing instead of attending someone's event isn't cushioning the blow, it's insulting the host. You're basically boasting that you are choosing to do something else. Hey, if you want to stay home and masturbate that's your prerogative, but you do not need to share it with everybody on Evite.

And the 11th hour cancellations! Please.

We live in a Don't have a Good Excuse so I'll Make you listen to a Bad One Society. When you decline an invitation you’re not obligated to provide a reason. If you must, be polite, considerate and graceful. Don’t say you’re just gonna stay in and get some things done or go see a movie. Simply say that you aren’t able to make it.

…but thanks for the invite is invitation-ese for “please don’t invite me to anything else.”

"Let me know when your next event is” is invitation-ese for “I’m sorry for being such a donk, please invite me next time and I’ll do a better job of making it.’

I'd write more but I have a stack of EVITE to look through!
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