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#1
Old 01-08-2011, 07:58 AM
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The psychology of punctual people vs late people according to lisalan

I have always been a punctal person all of my life. I believe punctuality shows that you have mastered the skill of time management. I also believe that punctuality shows strength of character. It shows that you are dependable, care about other people's feelings and respect their time.

People who are late are deficient in the skill of time management. Lateness shows a weaknes of character. It shows that you are not dependable, are selfish and put your feelings above others and have no respect for other people's time.
Late people.....I loathe you You are my crypotnite.


So lets discuss this amongst ourselves. Am I right about this?
Late people. Prove me wrong. Justify your actions to me.
Let the intellectual battle begin. Punctual people vs late people.....discuss.
#2
Old 01-08-2011, 08:13 AM
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I think that people who are habitually late are mostly careless and disrespectful. However I don't really give a shit because I allow for them being late and if they fuck up something that matters I just carry on without them.
#3
Old 01-08-2011, 08:29 AM
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Pretty much every punctual person I have ever met thinks this way, and I don't understand why. I get feeling like you've mastered something other people haven't, because you have. But, knowing that, why do you then assume that the person is being disrespectful? If someone lacks a skill, they lack a skill.

I could make the opposite argument: that the people who get all offended by late people are selfish. It's all about them, and how the latecomer makes them feel.

Plus, I know plenty of dependable people who run late all the time. Sure, I may not be able to depend on them to be present at the exact moment the clock says they should be, but I can definitely depend on them to do what they say they will do.

And I know a lot of punctual people who are not trustworthy. They are only on time to things they want to do. And when I need them, they are the most likely to say No, because they have something else scheduled that they can't possibly be late for.

I think it's just one group of people justifying why they get annoyed by another group, rather than someone trying to actually figure out what's going on.
#4
Old 01-08-2011, 08:58 AM
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My husband is often late, though not always. I think it's because he seems to be unable to accurately estimate how much time something will take. He's really, really good at estimating how much space something will take up, or how far away something is -- physical measurements -- and his confidence in *that* ability carries over where it has no business carrying over, to his time-estimation skill.

In particular, his time-estimation nearly always leaves out a realistic fudge factor. He may know, accurately, that driving from here-to-there means 1:45 of driving... but he then drastically underestimates the time it takes to get everyone and everything into the car. And, as far as I can tell, it's a moral issue with him: he resists allotting a realistic amount of time for that because we have so much to do and people are expecting us and it SHOULDN'T take us so damn long to get ready. It's as if he feels that if we would just focus, we could get ready so much faster. He wakes up every morning convinced that today, unlike all other days, we will be efficient. Today, unlike all other days, we will remember everything the first time, and everything will be where we expect to find it, and decisions will be instant without having to hem and haw, and so on.

He routinely gives himself lists of things to do that are not actually possible to do -- but conceivably could be, if a mythical superhuman were able to do everything perfectly efficiently. Then, when he doesn't get everything on his list done, he feels like he's failed (again).

In sum, he feels like his lateness is a moral failing on his part (or a joint moral failing by whoever else is late with him, e.g., me) even though it's really unrealistic expectations for efficiency, and I wish he'd learn otherwise. Punctual people (not necessarily lisalan) who believe that late people are "just selfish" don't help.
#5
Old 01-08-2011, 09:06 AM
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People who keep you waiting are saying that you are not important enough to deserve consideration.
#6
Old 01-08-2011, 09:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madmonk28 View Post
People who keep you waiting are saying that you are not important enough to deserve consideration.

Exactly. That is the message they are sending.
#7
Old 01-08-2011, 09:28 AM
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Originally Posted by BigT View Post
Pretty much every punctual person I have ever met thinks this way, and I don't understand why. I get feeling like you've mastered something other people haven't, because you have. But, knowing that, why do you then assume that the person is being disrespectful? If someone lacks a skill, they lack a skill.

I could make the opposite argument: that the people who get all offended by late people are selfish. It's all about them, and how the latecomer makes them feel.

Plus, I know plenty of dependable people who run late all the time. Sure, I may not be able to depend on them to be present at the exact moment the clock says they should be, but I can definitely depend on them to do what they say they will do.

And I know a lot of punctual people who are not trustworthy. They are only on time to things they want to do. And when I need them, they are the most likely to say No, because they have something else scheduled that they can't possibly be late for.

I think it's just one group of people justifying why they get annoyed by another group, rather than someone trying to actually figure out what's going on.


Yes they lack the skill of time managment but is that an excuse to NEVER try and develop the skill? I think not.
I also think that SOME late people are just lazy and are procrastinators.
If they are truly not selfish people like you say don;t you think they they would try to change/improve their time management skills????

Last edited by lisalan; 01-08-2011 at 09:28 AM.
#8
Old 01-08-2011, 09:29 AM
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no, it's the message you are perceiving. there's a difference, and it's not a small one.

Quote:
If they are truly not selfish people like you say don;t you think they they would try to change/improve their time management skills????

why would they, if they have no incentive to do so?

Last edited by jz78817; 01-08-2011 at 09:30 AM.
#9
Old 01-08-2011, 09:31 AM
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Originally Posted by emmaliminal View Post
My husband is often late, though not always. I think it's because he seems to be unable to accurately estimate how much time something will take. He's really, really good at estimating how much space something will take up, or how far away something is -- physical measurements -- and his confidence in *that* ability carries over where it has no business carrying over, to his time-estimation skill.

In particular, his time-estimation nearly always leaves out a realistic fudge factor. He may know, accurately, that driving from here-to-there means 1:45 of driving... but he then drastically underestimates the time it takes to get everyone and everything into the car. And, as far as I can tell, it's a moral issue with him: he resists allotting a realistic amount of time for that because we have so much to do and people are expecting us and it SHOULDN'T take us so damn long to get ready. It's as if he feels that if we would just focus, we could get ready so much faster. He wakes up every morning convinced that today, unlike all other days, we will be efficient. Today, unlike all other days, we will remember everything the first time, and everything will be where we expect to find it, and decisions will be instant without having to hem and haw, and so on.

He routinely gives himself lists of things to do that are not actually possible to do -- but conceivably could be, if a mythical superhuman were able to do everything perfectly efficiently. Then, when he doesn't get everything on his list done, he feels like he's failed (again).

In sum, he feels like his lateness is a moral failing on his part (or a joint moral failing by whoever else is late with him, e.g., me) even though it's really unrealistic expectations for efficiency, and I wish he'd learn otherwise. Punctual people (not necessarily lisalan) who believe that late people are "just selfish" don't help.

Your husaband has expressed to you that he feels that his lateness is a moral failing. He has told you the reason point blank. Yet you are trying to make up excuses for him by saying he has unrealistic expectations for efficiency. If he is telling you it is a moral failing then it IS a moral failing. I'm not saying he has no morals. I'm sure he is a great guy.
My husband is always late and I'll say the same thing about him. He is selfish because he does not consider what he is doing to me by making me wait for him all the freaking time.

Last edited by lisalan; 01-08-2011 at 09:31 AM.
#10
Old 01-08-2011, 09:33 AM
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My husband is always late and I'll say the same thing about him. He is selfish because he does not consider what he is doing to me by making me wait for him all the freaking time.
there's also the chance that he thinks you're being selfish by trying to make him snap to your deadlines.

here's the real answer- different people have different personalities and priorities. Get over it.
#11
Old 01-08-2011, 09:34 AM
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This used to be a real hot button for me - it could make me berserk. I have dropped friends where were chronically late.

Quote:
Originally Posted by madmonk28 View Post
People who keep you waiting are saying that you are not important enough to deserve consideration.
Yes, this was exactly my reasoning. I strongly felt that people who kept me waiting just felt like I wasn't import.

As I have aged, I have mellowed on this. Everyone's mind focuses differently. I for instance, am very tolerant of clutter, but am almost always on time. If I'm not on time, something has happened.

A good friend of mine can't handle clutter at all - but he is perpetually late. I know him well enough to know that he doesn't think I am not important. He has done some amazingly nice things for me - but time is not on his mind. He will be in a book store, find an old copy of Sherlock Holmes and buy it for a friend who is a fan (so I know he is thoughtful) - but time is not on his mind.

Now when I meet people, I take a book and sit patiently until they arrive.

I confess though, that there is a limit to how long I will wait.
#12
Old 01-08-2011, 09:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jz78817 View Post
no, it's the message you are perceiving. there's a difference, and it's not a small one.




why would they, if they have no incentive to do so?

So the fact that they make everyone wait for them and waste people's time is not an incentive to change?
I'm sure that most people who are always late must make it to work on time. Why you ask? That's because there is something in it for them....money.
However, lets say the wife says we have to be at so and so's at 4:00 and because of the husband they get there at 4:30. This shows they are selfish because the consequences of being late to so and so's just means that other will be irritated at them. the consequence of being late for work mean getting fired.

Last edited by lisalan; 01-08-2011 at 09:36 AM.
#13
Old 01-08-2011, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by jz78817 View Post
there's also the chance that he thinks you're being selfish by trying to make him snap to your deadlines.

here's the real answer- different people have different personalities and priorities. Get over it.

I don't need to get over anything.....These are not deadlines I am making him snap to. These are important appointments that one cannot be late for.
Why do I have a feeling that you're one of those late people????

Last edited by lisalan; 01-08-2011 at 09:38 AM.
#14
Old 01-08-2011, 09:41 AM
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You are exactly right

Quote:
Originally Posted by lisalan View Post
I have always been a punctal person all of my life. I believe punctuality shows that you have mastered the skill of time management. I also believe that punctuality shows strength of character. It shows that you are dependable, care about other people's feelings and respect their time.

People who are late are deficient in the skill of time management. Lateness shows a weaknes of character. It shows that you are not dependable, are selfish and put your feelings above others and have no respect for other people's time.
Late people.....I loathe you You are my crypotnite.
You said it all.
#15
Old 01-08-2011, 09:42 AM
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I had several ex-friends who were always late. To everything--dinner, movies, weekend outings, carpooling to work, etc. Sometimes they'd call and say they were running behind, which was really an excuse to be even more tardy. I tried subtle hints, not-so-subtle hints, even scheduling things earlier and going ahead without them. Those strategies did not cure the lateness, and that is why those people are ex-friends.

My co-worker is always late coming in, and it's gotten worse over the years. He used to be 10 minutes late, then 15, now it's up to 30 minutes. The boss doesn't seem to care, so now I come in 15 minutes early...and leave early, too. That helps me beat the commute traffic in both directions, so I guess it's a win-win situation.
#16
Old 01-08-2011, 09:53 AM
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Why do I have a feeling that you're one of those late people????
I'm not. What I am is one of those people who get irritated at other people who say things like "I think (x) is really important. What's WRONG with those people who don't think (x) is as important as I do?"

Quote:
So the fact that they make everyone wait for them and waste people's time is not an incentive to change?
no, not if it doesn't have any tangible negative consequences. people aren't always going to pick up on your silent seething and feel sufficiently shamed.

Last edited by jz78817; 01-08-2011 at 09:54 AM.
#17
Old 01-08-2011, 10:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigT View Post
Pretty much every punctual person I have ever met thinks this way, and I don't understand why. I get feeling like you've mastered something other people haven't, because you have. But, knowing that, why do you then assume that the person is being disrespectful? If someone lacks a skill, they lack a skill.
I think part of our disbelief is that, IMHO, the OP is wrong. Punctuality is not a "skill." It doesn't take enough effort to "master" to call it a skill. Punctuality is a choice. Either you choose to get there on time or you don't. If you aren't leaving in time (leaving aside cases where you're delayed by forces truly outside your control) then you are choosing not to.

What skill is involved in it? Someone showing up late to work every day is choosing to be late. If you're late on this one occasion when there was a bad accident on the highway, hey, that's life. Late every day is a choice.
#18
Old 01-08-2011, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisalan View Post
Your husaband has expressed to you that he feels that his lateness is a moral failing. He has told you the reason point blank. Yet you are trying to make up excuses for him by saying he has unrealistic expectations for efficiency. If he is telling you it is a moral failing then it IS a moral failing.
No no no -- sorry if I gave that impression -- he has never stated this; it's my interpretation. For balance, I also get the impression that he feels morally inadequate when he doesn't understand something, requires sleep or food or warmth, comes down sick, gets injured, etc. He has... issues with ordinary humanness, sometimes. It's a Calvinist Yankee heritage thing.
#19
Old 01-08-2011, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by jz78817 View Post
I'm not. What I am is one of those people who get irritated at other people who say things like "I think (x) is really important. What's WRONG with those people who don't think (x) is as important as I do?"



no, not if it doesn't have any tangible negative consequences. people aren't always going to pick up on your silent seething and feel sufficiently shamed.

Are you seriously trying to say that people who are always late affect no one's lives but their own? They are hurting and incoveniencing other people by their actions.
#20
Old 01-08-2011, 10:24 AM
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Originally Posted by RickJay View Post
I think part of our disbelief is that, IMHO, the OP is wrong. Punctuality is not a "skill." It doesn't take enough effort to "master" to call it a skill. Punctuality is a choice. Either you choose to get there on time or you don't. If you aren't leaving in time (leaving aside cases where you're delayed by forces truly outside your control) then you are choosing not to.

What skill is involved in it? Someone showing up late to work every day is choosing to be late. If you're late on this one occasion when there was a bad accident on the highway, hey, that's life. Late every day is a choice.

Time management IS a skill. People who are late often don't realize how much time it takes to do A. So they get caught up in doing A and then are late.
Time management is a major component of punctuality. Punctuality is also part of ones personality though....it's complex.

Last edited by lisalan; 01-08-2011 at 10:25 AM.
#21
Old 01-08-2011, 10:27 AM
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I used to despair about my wife's complete lack of time sense. She really does not understand the concept of how much time is needed to do things, so she is usually late. It took me about a year to figure out that I need to multiply what ever she says by a factor of three. "I'll be ready in ten minutes" means a half hour. I have a lot of faults, but I've always been punctual; early, even, especially to work. It's probably the military training. Prior to 9/11, her tendency to arrive at airports twenty minutes or less before flight time drove me insane. I was finally able to break her of that habit.

As for other things, I don't believe she's inconsiderate, regardless of how the message is received.
#22
Old 01-08-2011, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Are you seriously trying to say that people who are always late affect no one's lives but their own?
NO! Nowhere have I said that.

Quote:
They are hurting and incoveniencing other people by their actions.
they either don't realize it or are perceiving it as not a big deal. As I said already and I'll say it one more time, people tend not to change unless forced to by consequences. I mean, let me put it this way- If I'm habitually late to work, but nobody I work with says anything to me about it, and I'm never written up or disciplined for it, then where's the incentive to be on time? Am I supposed to know that you're giving me dirty looks behind my back?

Last edited by jz78817; 01-08-2011 at 10:33 AM.
#23
Old 01-08-2011, 11:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisalan View Post
I have always been a punctal person all of my life. I believe punctuality shows that you have mastered the skill of time management. I also believe that punctuality shows strength of character. It shows that you are dependable, care about other people's feelings and respect their time.

People who are late are deficient in the skill of time management. Lateness shows a weaknes of character. It shows that you are not dependable, are selfish and put your feelings above others and have no respect for other people's time.
Late people.....I loathe you You are my crypotnite.


So lets discuss this amongst ourselves. Am I right about this?
Late people. Prove me wrong. Justify your actions to me.
Let the intellectual battle begin. Punctual people vs late people.....discuss.
Although I can agree that punctuality shows good time management skills, I fail to see how that constitutes 'strength of character'. Do you really believe that all you need are good time management skills to qualify as a person of strong character - selfless, dependable and respectful?

I think that it just shows that you are a punctual person - and it tells me nothing else about your character at all. However, your willingness to make global moral judgments about others based on the fact that they lack a skill that is important to you, tells me a lot more...
#24
Old 01-08-2011, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by emmaliminal View Post
In particular, his time-estimation nearly always leaves out a realistic fudge factor. He may know, accurately, that driving from here-to-there means 1:45 of driving... but he then drastically underestimates the time it takes to get everyone and everything into the car.
I'm an occasional latecomer, and this about sums it up. I know that it CAN, on occasion, take an hour to get to work, but goddamit it SHOULDN'T take an hour to get six miles, so I tend to not allow for what is offensively unnecessary. And half the time when I'm late, I can blame the fucking slow walkers for it. Damn I hate slow walkers. Now THOSE people are selfish and inconsiderate.

As for the OPs opinion that being late is a character flaw, whatever. Yeah, I care more about my time and priorities than I do about yours. Clearly, we have that in common.

Last edited by DianaG; 01-08-2011 at 11:09 AM.
#25
Old 01-08-2011, 11:13 AM
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I am not the world's most punctual person. Mostly it's because I'm not good at judging how long it will take me to get places. I think I got this from my mom, who is NEVER on time to ANYTHING - I had to get over my upbringing to become the mildly punctual person I am today.

My best friend is chronically late. It drives me up the fucking wall. And we're not talking five minutes - she's been as much as 40 minutes late to stuff at times. She always has a good reason for why she's late, but never has a good reason as to why she couldn't send me a text message to let me know that something had come up. Her being incredibly late to something is the cause of the only argument we've ever had. She's French and I think that has something to do with it, but it doesn't make me like it any better.
#26
Old 01-08-2011, 11:35 AM
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I have an ex who was chronically late to everything, drove me mad- the worst time I remember was when we had to catch a train for a gig we were both really looking forward to.
I booked the train tickets and told him the train left 20 minutes before it really did; the rest of the trip 'planning' was left to him.

This took the form of coming downstairs literally 5 minutes before the train was 'due', so far as he believed, discovering his dad was in, and asking him if we could have a lift. As it happened, he wasn't busy, and said sure. We get in the car nand drive casually to the other side of town, my ex is cheerfully talking about the great time we're going to be having (by this time, by the clock, the train has 'left', which I point out to be told, 'Oh, it'll be fine, they're late all the time).
We get to the station exactly as the train does, and I literally have to drag him on before it goes, as he's 'just checking this is the right one,' (this station had a grand total of 1 platform going in that direction and all intercity trains go to the same destination. I got the train from there every school day for 7 years.)

Once on the train, he notices the train is listed as being on time, and arrived 20 minutes later than I told him it would. And gets angry at me for lying to him.
I ask what would have happened if he'd known what time it was really due, and he says we 'needn't have been in such a rush if he'd known,' then sulks at me for about an hour... *twitch*

This is why late people drive me insane. Partially because I'm normally about 10 minutes early for everything so spend a lot of time waiting for people and partially because anyone who is regularly late automatically reminds me of him.
#27
Old 01-08-2011, 11:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madmonk28 View Post
People who keep you waiting are saying that you are not important enough to deserve consideration.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lisalan View Post
Exactly. That is the message they are sending.
This is also the way that I view it. Being chronically late is a form a passive narcissism.

Being on time is not a skill, it is an ethic. Like having a good work ethic.

The difference between "others are depending upon me, so I have an obligation to be on time', vs "I feel no obligation to those that are waiting on me and I shall get there when I do, the others can deal with it. They always do."
#28
Old 01-08-2011, 11:52 AM
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My mother (who is NEVER late) sucks at pronouncing non-English words and even pronouncing English words in ways other than she learned growing up in Iowa. For instance, it took her more than a decade of living in Washington state to stop pronouncing it "Warshington". She is a professor and a consultant, interacting with people from all over the world every day, and butchers many of their names. When I was a teenager, she pronounced my first serious boyfriend's name, Eric, as "Ear-ick", which pissed me off every time. I thought she just didn't care, or maybe was doing it out of disrespect for Eric and for my choice in boyfriends. In my thirties, though, she had an ongoing project in Costa Rica. I watched as she struggled to the point of tears in trying to take Spanish classes. She could memorize the vocabulary and grammar, but for the life of her she can barely manage to make herself understood, after years of classes now, because her pronunciation is so poor.

Is this a character failing? Is she showing disrespect for Spanish speakers and putting her ideas about pronunciation first? I don't think so. I think pronunciation is a skill, one that for whatever reason is very, very hard for Mom. She could drop everything and spend all her time in immersion classes to avoid offending anyone, but ... well, I don't think that would be sensible. Or necessary.

You probably use more than your global fair share of resources. You probably use more energy and generate more waste than you should. You probably drive to places you *could* walk to, or bike to, or whatever, instead. You probably buy things you don't need and fail to give all your disposable income to charities for worthy causes. Do you do this out of contempt for the poorer people of the planet?

I doubt it. Should you change your inconsiderate, morally suspect ways? Maybe. Will I condemn you for not doing so? No.

Sure, some people who are habitually late are rude and inconsiderate. Not all of them. For some people, it's a skill that's just very, very difficult to acquire. For some, other elements of their habits or value systems -- elements that have nothing to do with disrespect -- interfere.
#29
Old 01-08-2011, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Dallas Jones View Post
This is also the way that I view it. Being chronically late is a form a passive narcissism.

Being on time is not a skill, it is an ethic. Like having a good work ethic.

The difference between "others are depending upon me, so I have an obligation to be on time', vs "I feel no obligation to those that are waiting on me and I shall get there when I do, the others can deal with it. They always do."
I've noticed that people who are chronically late seem to make it to things like job interviews on time, so they are capable of making the effort, but most of the time they just can't be bothered to make the effort.
#30
Old 01-08-2011, 12:13 PM
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I had a demonstration of how different people function differently a couple of years ago. My sister and I were starting from the same place and going to the same place; due to circumstances, we had to take two cars. I said it would take 25 minutes to get there, my sister insisted it would take ten. It took 25 minutes on the dot. I'm almost always on time, my sister has struggled with being late all her life.

I think there's a lot of factors in play for people who are habitually late; they don't estimate time well, they overload themselves (my sister tries to get ten things done before she goes out the door, instead of just putting on her shoes and going), they overschedule themselves, they have unrealistic ideas of how long things take. I wouldn't say all late people do it to make anyone else miserable, though - that just seems to be the unfortunate fallout when the punctual come in contact with the tardy.

In the end, punctual people have to decide what to do about the tardy - some people (like my sister) I will make allowances for. Other people (casual acquaintances) get almost zero leeway - late once and I won't make plans with you again. The tardy can also work on improving the things they don't do well if they recognize that there is a problem; some tardy people really don't care how they affect other people, so make no effort to change.

Last edited by Cat Whisperer; 01-08-2011 at 12:14 PM.
#31
Old 01-08-2011, 12:22 PM
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Originally Posted by madmonk28 View Post
I've noticed that people who are chronically late seem to make it to things like job interviews on time, so they are capable of making the effort, but most of the time they just can't be bothered to make the effort.
wow, imagine that - some thoughtless bastards actually put a higher priority on getting a job and making a living than they do on your time!
#32
Old 01-08-2011, 12:23 PM
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I learned from my father, who was the master of punctuality. Whenever he/we were going anywhere and had to be there at a specific time, Dad would be there on the dot every single time. Whenever he was picking me up from somewhere, he'd show up at exactly the minute he was supposed to, without fail. And it's not like he was showing up early and just waiting around the corner for the right time, he just had an almost supernatural ability to judge distance and traffic at any given time to determine when to leave the house to get somewhere at a specific time.

Perhaps I inherited it because I'm able to (mostly) do this without even thinking about it, although I occasionally show up somewhere crazy early. If I had to analyze it I suppose it's mostly a matter of being ready to go whenever and knowing the area exceptionally well.
#33
Old 01-08-2011, 12:25 PM
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I have noticed thta most idealists are also late people. I think they plan for how long a trip should take, ratehr than for how long it does take.

Then there ar ethe utterly clueless. They are unable to think or plan ahead about anything. You can spot them on picnics, they are the ones who can't sing "100 bottles of beer on the Wall" because they never think about what number will come up until they get to the actual word in the song. My friend S will reliably and dependably leave the house at the time that you give her, regardless of the length of the trip or the fact that she was actually supposed to arrive at that time.

I have also had one boss who kept people waiting purposefully, to prove that he was important enough that they'd do so. He also often took calls while others were in mid-sentence. If you are confusing all late people with the likes of him then you are making a huge mistake.
#34
Old 01-08-2011, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jz78817 View Post
I'm not. What I am is one of those people who get irritated at other people who say things like "I think (x) is really important. What's WRONG with those people who don't think (x) is as important as I do?"
In all fairness, I don't think that's what she's saying at all. More "What's WRONG with people who can't crawl out of their own ass for the 2 seconds it takes to realize that I got better shit to do than sit around waiting on them all the time?" Because, you know, it really shouldn't take "silent seething" to make someone aware that constantly being a pain in someone's ass is a Bad Thing and should be avoided when possible.

The fact that not being a constant pain in the ass isn't enough incentive for someone to change is a moral failing. I'm sorry, it just is. Not a major one, obviously, but a moral failing nonetheless, because it means you don't give a flying fuck about making someone's life worse.
#35
Old 01-08-2011, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by LilyoftheField View Post
wow, imagine that - some thoughtless bastards actually put a higher priority on getting a job and making a living than they do on your time!
Well, that's part of it - tardy people sometimes seem to think that other people's time is worth nothing. I don't agree with the idea that getting a job is important, but keeping me waiting is not.
#36
Old 01-08-2011, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by LilyoftheField View Post
wow, imagine that - some thoughtless bastards actually put a higher priority on getting a job and making a living than they do on your time!
Exactly, when it is important to their own goals, they are on time, but when negatively impacts others, they don't care. It is the definition of narcissism.
#37
Old 01-08-2011, 12:59 PM
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My own experience has been that the chronically late people in my life are also the chronically selfish people in my life. They fall into two categories:

(1) People who think they are literally more important than other people, so other people can wait for them (they've told me so), and

(2) People who are so Zen-Buddhist that they'd rather end the friendship with you than work out any kind of friction or make an effort to hold up their end of a compromise.

That's been my honest experience. I haven't happened to meet a single chronically late person who just literally couldn't estimate the time needed to do things (though I've met plenty who thought it was a waste of their energy to try to estimate) or who was late on "moral" grounds.
#38
Old 01-08-2011, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cat Whisperer View Post
Well, that's part of it - tardy people sometimes seem to think that other people's time is worth nothing. I don't agree with the idea that getting a job is important, but keeping me waiting is not.
Well, if you valued your time as much as you expect others to, you wouldn't be spending it sitting around waiting for someone who's late. Especially if you're waiting for someone that you had every reason to expect would be late, based on past experience. You are the one making the choice to wait.

And I didn't say that your time wasn't important, only that its a lot lower on the priority list than making a living. On my priority list, obviously, not yours.

I know my posts make it sound like I am one of those chronically late people, which I'm not. Not usually, anyway. But sometimes... Because time is not an important issue for me as a rule. I don't like being a slave to the clock, and I will avoid that as much as I can. If you can't deal with that, I understand. I don't demand that you make allowances for my idiosyncrasies. But if you have reason to expect that I will probably be late, then don't get on your moral high horse and hold me responsible for your time. "You knew damn well I was a snake before you brought me home!"

(Bonus points for whoever remembers that song!)
#39
Old 01-08-2011, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisalan View Post
...Punctuality is also part of ones personality though....
Isn't it even more a part of cultural context? I personally don't hold up punctuality as some kind of virtue or quality of character for its own sake, nor as a technical achievement. However, I can understand when lateness actually is a slight or indication of selfishness or narcissism, as opposed to when it is in fact just culturally indicated. I can be exceedingly punctual, if I wish, and when it's culturally relevant; it's not simply the manifestation of some immutable personality trait.

In the course of any given day I am constantly navigating across and between cultural differences--sometimes where they overlap, and sometimes where one or more are taking on new, syncretic agreement as to what "punctuality" means and how and to what degree it is valued. If I don't keep this in mind, I'm likely to be offended or give offense a lot, unnecessarily. I can't afford to make generalizations about "punctual people" and "late people"--only about one particular person in one type of situation over the span of repeated incidents.

Last edited by guizot; 01-08-2011 at 01:12 PM.
#40
Old 01-08-2011, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Sattua View Post
My own experience has been that the chronically late people in my life are also the chronically selfish people in my life. They fall into two categories:

(1) People who think they are literally more important than other people, so other people can wait for them (they've told me so), and

(2) People who are so Zen-Buddhist that they'd rather end the friendship with you than work out any kind of friction or make an effort to hold up their end of a compromise.

That's been my honest experience. I haven't happened to meet a single chronically late person who just literally couldn't estimate the time needed to do things (though I've met plenty who thought it was a waste of their energy to try to estimate) or who was late on "moral" grounds.
I think there is a third category for people who make the same trip or commute every day, but don't seem to be able to understand that regular delays often happen along the route and that one needs to account for these delays in their time budgeting. These people are clinically known as otnay ootay ightbray.

Last edited by madmonk28; 01-08-2011 at 01:15 PM.
#41
Old 01-08-2011, 01:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DCnDC View Post
I learned from my father, who was the master of punctuality. Whenever he/we were going anywhere and had to be there at a specific time, Dad would be there on the dot every single time. Whenever he was picking me up from somewhere, he'd show up at exactly the minute he was supposed to, without fail. And it's not like he was showing up early and just waiting around the corner for the right time, he just had an almost supernatural ability to judge distance and traffic at any given time to determine when to leave the house to get somewhere at a specific time.

Perhaps I inherited it because I'm able to (mostly) do this without even thinking about it, although I occasionally show up somewhere crazy early. If I had to analyze it I suppose it's mostly a matter of being ready to go whenever and knowing the area exceptionally well.
My dad and I are like this too. We are very proud of our punctuality, and we often arrive places on the dot. Both of us are definitely very good at navigation and knowing the area. If we're going to an unfamiliar place, we tend to consult a lot of maps and do a lot of planning.

I think part of our punctuality is due to our social anxiety (another trait we share). The last thing we ever want is to stick out in any way. If we ever had to be told "you're late" or if we inconvenienced others by being late, or if we walked in to a room and people stared at us because we're late, we might just die.

We'd much rather be on time than embarrassed.

My roommate is very much a free spirit, and so is his mom. He's the sort of guy with face piercings, visible tattoos and funny hair. Obviously he is not afraid of being stared at. Totally sweet guy but also chronically late. Sometimes hours late. I don't think he's trying to make people talk about him or trying to make an entrance, but it doesn't bother him when it happens like it would bother me.
#42
Old 01-08-2011, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by madmonk28 View Post
Exactly, when it is important to their own goals, they are on time, but when negatively impacts others, they don't care. It is the definition of narcissism.
well, gosh...you say that as though it was a bad thing!

#43
Old 01-08-2011, 01:54 PM
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Originally Posted by LilyoftheField View Post
Although I can agree that punctuality shows good time management skills, I fail to see how that constitutes 'strength of character'. Do you really believe that all you need are good time management skills to qualify as a person of strong character - selfless, dependable and respectful?

I think that it just shows that you are a punctual person - and it tells me nothing else about your character at all. However, your willingness to make global moral judgments about others based on the fact that they lack a skill that is important to you, tells me a lot more...

Yes and you can tell everything about me by one post
The fact that I'm punctual means I don't like to keep other waiting because I RESPECT their time and their feelings....
You are doing the same thing you are accusing me of doing. Don't you realizing that? YOU are judging ME.
#44
Old 01-08-2011, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by madmonk28 View Post
Exactly, when it is important to their own goals, they are on time, but when negatively impacts others, they don't care. It is the definition of narcissism.

That's what I'm saying. If being late impacts THEM then somehow they manage to be ready on time. When it impacts others suddenly they're not so punctual are they????
Excellent post madmonk28!!!!
#45
Old 01-08-2011, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by LilyoftheField View Post
Well, if you valued your time as much as you expect others to, you wouldn't be spending it sitting around waiting for someone who's late. Especially if you're waiting for someone that you had every reason to expect would be late, based on past experience. You are the one making the choice to wait.
Well, I get annoyed while I'm waiting - does that count?
Quote:
I don't like being a slave to the clock<snip>
Have we ever had a thread on lateness where someone didn't post exactly that sentiment? It's bullshit, by the way; if you're doing things by yourself and you're trying to do them at a specific time for no good reason, that would be being a slave to the clock. If you have other people waiting for you and you try not to be late, that's just being a part of society.
#46
Old 01-08-2011, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by CrazyCatLady View Post
In all fairness, I don't think that's what she's saying at all. More "What's WRONG with people who can't crawl out of their own ass for the 2 seconds it takes to realize that I got better shit to do than sit around waiting on them all the time?" Because, you know, it really shouldn't take "silent seething" to make someone aware that constantly being a pain in someone's ass is a Bad Thing and should be avoided when possible.

The fact that not being a constant pain in the ass isn't enough incentive for someone to change is a moral failing. I'm sorry, it just is. Not a major one, obviously, but a moral failing nonetheless, because it means you don't give a flying fuck about making someone's life worse.

I bet you the ones who are being so antagonistic on this thread are the late people
#47
Old 01-08-2011, 02:07 PM
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This thread def. hits a nerve for me. I have a friend who will suggest lunch, then (after lunch time) he'll text and say he's late, but how about coffee? I end up spending the whole day on call for him. We've been friends close to 20 years, but it's gotten worse and it has eroded the friendship until there just isn't much left; constantly shitting on people will do that to a relationship.
#48
Old 01-08-2011, 02:38 PM
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You know - I use to be very punctual. If I said I was going to be somewhere at a certain time I would be there at that time on the dot if not a few minutes early.

Now I have Junior and - eh, not so much. Here's the thing - I can plan to the minute how long it will take me to get ready, get him ready, get us in the car and get to wherever. But, if we're stepping out the door and he blows out his diaper with poo - well, I'm gonna be late, and maybe that makes me inconsiderate. I suppose I COULD ignore the blow out and drive to wherever with Junior sitting in his own waste, but I think that would actually make me a bad mother. In the grand scheme of things, I would rather be inconsiderate of someone else's time than be a bad mother, so that's the choice. FWIW, I do always call and let the person know of the situation so I'm not a total jerk. Also, this applies to EVERYONE - Drs. appointments, shopping dates with friends, going to my parent's house - everything.

Now, I don't actually consider that a moral failing on my part. I am generally a very punctual person and if there is no blow out, they we are on time; however, sometimes shit happens (how appropos!!)

Further, I have many friends that are not from North America. Guess what - Latin time is not the same as North American time. A few years ago a boyfriend and I actually caught our hosts in a bit of a pickle by showing up at the time they indicated for a dinner party - the Mrs. was in the middle of a nap! Why? Because everyone is late in Latin America - it's just how it is. I'm sure they considered us RUDE for showing up exactly on the button.

And that's the thing - not everyone has to do things like everyone else. I agree that if someone is habitually late, and doesn't care how it affects others*, they're a douche - but I don't think everyone who is tardy is like this - I think sometimes expectations, culture and life get in the way.

*My mother has a friend like this - she'll show up an hour late to a dinner party and instead of saying she's sorry or whatever she'll say 'Meh - I had things to do.' like everyone else at the table didn't. If the group goes ahead and starts without her she'll become outraged and rant at the whole group. If she hosts at her house and people arrive even 2 minutes late, dinner will be on the table and everyone will be eating. She really is one of those people as described in the OP, but I don't think most late people are.

Last edited by alice_in_wonderland; 01-08-2011 at 02:39 PM.
#49
Old 01-08-2011, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by madmonk28 View Post
Exactly, when it is important to their own goals, they are on time, but when negatively impacts others, they don't care. It is the definition of narcissism.
Yes, in skimming the thread it seemed there is some disagreement whether the axiom about late people not respecting the time of others is true or not, so here's the experiment I propose:

Contact a bunch of chronically late people and tell them you have $1,000 to give them, and all they have to do is show up at your office at 5:00 today. Observe how many are late.
#50
Old 01-08-2011, 03:09 PM
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Originally Posted by lisalan View Post
Yes and you can tell everything about me by one post
The fact that I'm punctual means I don't like to keep other waiting because I RESPECT their time and their feelings....
You are doing the same thing you are accusing me of doing. Don't you realizing that? YOU are judging ME.
Well, no - you're assuming that I'm judging you, maybe 'cuz that's what you would do? I didn't state any judgment at all, just implied that a judgment was there. And you didn't like that, did you? All I'm saying is that if there is a judgment, its no worse (or better!) than what you are already doing.
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