Did you get voicemail? – Sorry, “It’s been a hectic week!”
Did you get my text? – Sorry, “It’s been a hectic week!”
I thought you were going to make it to my party? – Sorry, “It’s been a hectic week!”
I never heard back from you about us meeting up this weekend. – Sorry, “It’s been a hectic week!”
I am sorry, I know it’s a short notice, but I can’t make it. “It’s been a hectic week!”
“Hectic week” is San Francisco women’s signature excuse #1 for flaking. It’s so common, so overused, and so lame. I wonder if the girls who use it are naive enough to think that their next week is going to be any different or less hectic. They will continue using this excuse for being flaky week in an week out. Because our society has developed such high tolerance for flakiness, it is likely to continue and escalate to a degree where no one really cares or expects anyone to do as they say they will or show up when they say they will. What a beautiful world it will be….
Earlier today, one of the readers forwarded a screen shot if a text he got from a girl who cancelled their first. He said he received it about two hours before they were supposed to meet, and I am transcribing it verbatim:
“Hi (Name) – so I think I need to cancel for tonight – I am adopting a puppy! I am super excited but it means I probably won’t have time for dating for a couple of months 😉 sorry but I hope you meet someone great.”
This was written not by some unbalanced teenage girl, but by a 32 year-old woman who is apparently a business analyst at a major company. Funny and sad, more sad than funny…
What I hate about the rapidly spreading epidemic of flaking is not the never ending disappointments that we face when we don’t see the people we expect to see at the times we expect to see them. The biggest problem with flaking is not even our loss of trust in people’s ability or even their desire to keep their word and get things done at the time they are supposed to be done.
The biggest issue with flaking is … that it seems to no longer be a big deal to so many people. It seems that people are no longer offended when someone cancels plans on them with a short notice. It’s almost expected that there is at least 50% chance that whoever you have some kind of social plans with, will cancel on you and will not be able to make it.
Recently, I asked one of my friends to play tennis the following day at 6 pm. He told me: “I am not sure if I am available yet because I have a date tomorrow with this girl I met online, but chances are that she will cancel, because… you know how girls are, so we will probably be able to play.” Guess what – we ended up playing exactly 6 pm as we “planned”.
The last time I was complaining to one of my friends about my other friend’s flakiness, his response to me was just as surprising “Hey, why do you have such high expectations from people? He is just a friend. Who cares? It was just a social thing.” So, I supposed I was at fault for being too sensitive and for expecting too much from people.
Sadly I feel that as flaking is becoming more common and more accepted in our society and specifically in San Francisco, I myself become more flaky, because I know that there probably will be no consequences to not showing up where I am supposed to or canceling plans the last minute. Whoever I cancel on is very unlikely to get offended or take it personally, and it truly doesn’t seem to be a big deal anymore.
The people who are still much more committed to their word are those upper middle-class gay guys, who expect everything in their life to be perfect, including their manners and their social calendar. They are the ones who rarely flake and who don’t have much tolerance for flaking of others. I hope to use a few of my gay friends who are like that as an inspiration against, and an antidote for, my own flaking.