Thursday, October 25, 2007

you're so not invited

Dear H’s friend,

You are now officially on my LIST.

When I met you two years ago at the Christmas party for your and H’s company, I got a cold reception; barely a hello even though we were all sitting at the same table. But I didn't think much of it. For all you knew, it may not have worked out between me and him, and there’s no use getting to know someone who lives 2,000 miles away if you never see her again.

Then at the next year’s Christmas party, you didn’t even address me when we were all standing around in a circle under a plane. H was talking to someone and I didn't really know anyone else. I was baffled and kept wondering if you didn't like me for some reason. Sure, my clothes sometimes carry the faint aroma of samosas and I probably smile a little too much, but still. H told me not to worry about it, but I'm just not the let-it-go type, especially if I feel like I haven't done anything wrong.

I was determined to crack the mystery. I called you two months before H’s 30th birthday this year and asked if you’d like to help me do something nice for him. I figured it was a way to better get to know the people he hangs out with every weekend and it'd make him happy. I can’t say I was surprised you didn’t get back to me right away, but I was delighted a few weeks later when you called and offered to throw a party for him at your house. You said you’d get the word out and I suggested you send all the coworkers an evite; it’d be nice for H to see his pals from the office again. I was busy constructing a web of lies to get H to drive us three hours out of his way to go to your house when I came out to visit. And it was proving to be tricky.

About a week and a half before our agreed-upon date, I called to find out how the party planning was going and if I could do anything to help. I found out that you never sent any evite or told anyone at work, and the five-person guest list extended to the far-reaching corners of your living room (it consisted of your siblings, roommates and one friend who comes over all the time). I was baffled, especially because you work and play softball with so many of H's friends. And by that point, most people would have made commitments for that weekend and would likely not come, and I had already booked my tickets to fly out there.

H had told me that the weekend after I came to visit, you and your brother were throwing a Halloween party at your house. Everyone was coming as a rock star, and he was trying to think of what to wear. Just out of curiosity, I asked you about it. You said you invited 40 people from work and your brother invited 50 people from around town where you all grew up together. Granted, I've been told your brother probably had more to do with getting that shindig together—he's also the only one of you guys who came up to me at the Christmas party, said hello and asked me how my flight was. In fact, I'm kicking myself for not just contacting him about all this, because he's always been pretty cool and seems like someone who keeps promises.

You, on the other hand are NOT so cool. Believe me, I'm well aware that hosting parties is exhausting, and that you decided to have a big one the very next weekend. If it was too much work, I wish you had told me you wouldn't be able to do it instead of just sort of letting it fizzle out, or not even offered at all. And after seeing your lackluster enthusiasm and that limp guest list, I decided to cancel the party. It would have taken some fancy footwork to convince him to go all the way to your house from his sister's (whom we'd be visiting that weekend). And for a half-hearted evening, it just wouldn't be worth it. I was sad about canceling, but it turned out okay because nearly all of H's family decided to come down to his sister's place. We'd have our own little party for him. I wasn't going to tell him about the failed attempt because nothing sucks worse than no one doing anything for your birthday than no one doing anything for your birthday and then telling you about all the stuff they didn't do.

I figured what H didn't know couldn't hurt him. Then I found out that you told him about it. "We were going to throw you a party, but Cadiz canceled it," is what I believe he said. His reaction was pretty matter of fact, though, and he said it was no big deal. "When your birthday is on Halloween, Cadiz, you pretty much get used to everyone rather doing other things than celebrating it." That just broke my heart.

I was LIVID. Not only did you totally drop the ball on me, you disappointed a guy who has always gone out of his way to help you out, be it for rewiring your computer system and giving you advice on buying electronics or volunteering to do the annoying duties of a softball team manager when no one else wanted the hassle. And even though he blew it off, I don't think H would have told me what you said if it hadn't bothered him. And on top of all that, his sister said she bumped into you at a wedding, you asked her if you had to come all the way down to her house for H's birthday and she said, "No, but what you do have to do is offer your house for a party." That was the night you called me. So you didn't even come up with THAT on your own!

You may be one of his oldest friends, but from what I've seen, you're not a very good one. I'm pretty much over being mad at you, but I'm not in a hurry to hang out with you anytime soon. Or ever. I made an effort, but I've given up trying to figure out what your problem is. H has plenty of other friends who—even though they're far away—I'm sure would be delighted to do something nice for him. I plan on contacting them in the future.

When I found out you told him about the botched plan, I was so angry I said to my coworker, "I don't care who H is marrying, THIS GUY is not going to be invited." I'm sure he isn't getting married anytime soon, but that's lucky for you if he wants me to be his wedding planner. Because it'll take me a very long time to forget about this.


Sphincter said...

This guy sounds like an ass. I'm happy for YOU that you didn't have to spend time with him. Sorry to hear about the frustration, though.

omar said...

I know we've never actually met, but from what I do know about you, I know that I never ever ever want to be on your LIST.

Anonymous said...


Well maybe someone should defend the poor fellow. He seemingly lacks social skills - but his brother is obviously the brighter social light and maybe he is content to stay in the background. He probably doesn't date much, maybe has just a small circle of close friends so asking him to organize a party might be like asking you to solve differential equations. Still, he might be a good soul for all his social shortcomings - maybe the type to go to Africa and build a clinic. You never know.

willowtree said...

I would put him on a list. The people who behave as if they were born in a barn list.
And boy would he have hell to get off it.

cadiz12 said...

i would absolutely freak out if someone asked me to solve differential equations. but i'd like to think that if tackling those meant making someone i cared about happy, then i would seek help. but if i still couldn't manage it, i'd at least let the person who asked know, and maybe even offer to organize a party instead.

obviously a clinic in africa is infinitely more important than wishing someone a happy birthday, and building one is noble and praiseworthy, no doubt. but if a person can go so far out of his comfort zone to do wonderful things for people he's never met, where is the difficulty in a small nicety for a guy he has known most of his life, who he hangs out with several times a week? wouldn't social awkwardness affect the former more than the latter?

this post was written in frustration; during the time all this was going on, H was researching digital cameras so this guy could get the best deal and helping build parts of their entertainment system so they'd have a sweet projector picture. He volunteered to do all the stupid managerial duties no one else wanted to do for the softball team, and not once have i ever heard him even insinuate that he expected anything in return. Who wouldn't want to do something nice for a guy like that?

or is it more that he takes H for granted? As someone who thinks H is pretty special, i can't help but be angry.

Becky said...

i so know that anger. in fact, i invented it. it takes something special, a special hatred, to prompt someone to put aside any feelings toward their ex, and offer to plan the ex's wedding, just for the opportunity to EXCLUDE a dirtbag like that guy.

Librarian Girl said...

At best, he sounds extremely flakey. And that level of flakeyness is super frustrating. I don't blame you for feeling that way, at ALL.

Librarian Girl said...

Oh and the "faint aroma of samosas"? HAHAHAHAHAHA

Beenzzz said...

Two things:
He has a thing for you and knows he can't have you = resentment.

He has a thing for H and you're in the picture = resentment.

Have you seen "Love Actually?" It reminds me of that.

Becky said...

oooooh, I think beenzzz may be on to something...

Jon said...

my guess is he's just one of those guys that doesn't know any better. I don't think he has a thing for anyone, he's just not very good at putting things like that together. Probably doesn't have much experience. But you are entitled to your opinion. I won't take that away from you.

cadiz12 said...

i'm sorry to disappoint you guys, but i'm about 99% sure he doesn't have a thing for me. if he did, maybe he'd be a little more cooperative sort of like volunteering to shoot a wedding video (albeit tremendously one-sided) a la love, actually.

if he were malicious, i'd say maybe he didn't want me taking H away from him (one or both of us may move to be nearer to each other at some point), but after much discussion, i'm leaning toward Jon's idea that he really has no idea what the right thing to do is. now that i've calmed down a bit, i'm hoping he gets with a nice girlfriend who can set him straight, god help him.

ML said...

Here's my take on this situation: H is a good friend - he does things for people, helps them out when he can, is there during the good and bad. This Jackass who claims to be H's friend is a user. He does not want to give, but likes to receive. Because H is such a nice person, Jackass likes to take advantage of it as much as he can.

People like Jackass don't deserve to have people like H in his life or anyone good for that matter.

jinius said...

yikes! what a jerk! at least it feels good to air out frustrations online.

Guyana-Gyal said...

ML said it! He's probably one of those 'lazy' friends...they take and take, they have good intentions, make promises then duck out. But then, why has he been so rude to you in the past? Hm, would be interesting if you asked him outright.