Hey, you over there. Yes, you. Listen, I like you — I really do! — which is why my family invited you to come celebrate some special event in our lives. I told you there’d be cake. All I asked in exchange for this cake (and I make a damn good cake, if I may say so) is that you R.S.V.P.
But maybe you aren’t French or a human being who knows basic things, because I never actually received one. No phone call, no email; not even a text.
So allow me to explain that R.S.V.P. means répondez, s’il vous plait. This neatly translates to “please reply.” Not “really slow verification, please.” Not “resist stating venue presence.” When average people use French acronyms, we are politely requesting you do ONE TINY THING so the person who invited you to their party knows whether or not you’re attending the shindig, and if you’re bringing a friend or family of eight along with you. Am I making a cute little cake, or four dozen cupcakes for a crowd? It’d be super swell to know this ahead of time.
Thus, I sit here, tapping my foot, staring into the ether, waiting to hear from you.
Now, since I do know you well enough to have invited you into my home, I also know the many ways you can, in fact, get a hold of me to do your R.S.V.P.-ing. For example, I know you have a fancy telephone/texting machine/emailer in your pocket right now. There’s also the 1-3 computers in your home, the cell phones glued to your family members’ hands, a sprinkling of web-enabled tablets close by, that mailbox by your driveway, and a landline telephone kept especially for when Grandma calls the house. Or you could just say the words to my face any of the myriad of times you see me around town each week. I mean, there’s that. It’s a thing I hear people still do.
And yet, you haven’t done it. You haven’t R.S.V.P.’d to our party yet.
This radio silence in response to free cake (!!!) befuddles me, causing my brain to spin, weaving excuses on your behalf.
- A violent manicurist hacked up your fingers so badly it’s impossible to write or type or text or communicate in any way at all, really.
- The mailman has a grudge on you for skimping on the Dunkin’ Donuts gift card last holiday season and won’t take any more outgoing mail.
- Something large and heavy has fallen on you. Maybe a wall, or a tree, or your inconsideration for others?
- The neighbor whose Wi-Fi you usually steal recently made it password-protected.
- Perhaps you are trying to win an argument in the comments section of a thread on Facebook and can’t do anything else until you get the last word (spoiler alert: that will be never).
- You very recently passed on to the great beyond and are still befuddled by all the translucency and ectoplasm, unable to Swayze the buttons on your laptop to tell me your new status as phantom.
- You said, “I can’t EVEN” so many times it became true.
- You’re doing a new 30-day cleanse that is making you so hangry you can’t think straight long enough to not punch people who wish you a good morning, never mind try to type up a polite response to a party invitation.
- Tearing through all seven seasons of Gilmore Girls one more time before watching the four new episodes has taken up every free moment.
- You recently changed email addresses and by that I mean entered Witness Protection and are living off the grid with no access to the world wide web or a phone or common f*cking courtesy.
- Alien abduction.
I totally understand that things happen, just please don’t chirpily tell me you’ve been “too busy” to reply, because you know who else is busy? THE PERSON PLANNING THE PARTY WHO HAS NO IDEA WHETHER OR NOT YOU AND YOUR FAMILY AND ALL THE OTHER PEOPLE WHO NO LONGER R.S.V.P. TO THINGS ARE ATTENDING.
[Breathes into a paper bag]
Are you coming, or what?
Because I’m really looking forward to seeing you!!!