Friday, October 21, 2011

Answer Me!

I don't want to sound sexist, but I have a new pet peeve and the guilty parties on this one tend to be male. I've informally polled my Grace posse, and the testimony is overwhelming.

Here's the scenario:

Grace: "Grant, I'm heading out to the store, I'll be back in an hour." or "Grant, while you're in the kitchen, will you please give the soup a stir?" or "Grant, the lottery called, we won ten million dollars."

Grant: " " [The empty quotes indicate total silence.]

Grace: "Grant? Grant?" [Volume increasing] "Grant? Did you hear me???" and I have officially become Estelle Costanza.

All I ask is a response. I don't even care much what it is. Any of the following is acceptable, in decreasing order of preference:

"That's wonderful, Grace. Be sure to buy yourself some new shoes today."
"Ok, Grace"
"Copy that."
"10-4 Good Buddy"
"Sorry, that doesn't work for me."
"No can do."
"No &*^%$ way."

But the absolute silence puts us Graces in the unenviable position of ascertaining whether our message was received. If there is truly an auditory complication (loud music, hearing loss, eccentric neighbor's ill-timed chemical explosion) then Grant is not at fault; Graces simply repeat the statement at a slightly higher volume when the sonic boom ends and await a courteous (or at least spoken) answer. But if there is not a legitimate reason for the lack of response, and the silence continues, it is absolutely Gruntish to force Grace to transform, unwillingly, to the Untamed Shrew.

So answer us, guys. It saves time, trouble, and aggravation.


Ruby's said...

I always look forward to you post. And this one in particular applies to a wider audience than Graces and Grants.

Social Grace said...

Thanks, Ruby's. Glad you like the blog. This post has definitely generated discussion! Thanks for reading!

Anonymous said...

I am guilty of this, usually because I nod my head in response. My husband has not learned to look over at my for my response, and I have not learned to vocalize my response. Hopefully one of these years we will both learn. Seeing this post makes me feel a bit more guilty about it, so I will try harder to be a Grace about this one! Thanks for the nudge, and I'm sure he thanks you, too!

Social Grace said...

Thanks, Anonymous! You husband is a lucky guy.

Mr. H said...

I beg to differ, Grace. Entering my second decade of marriage, (to the same woman), I feel that silence to a yes or no question should be viewed as an acceptable affirmation. Rude or not, silence means "yes". If your male mate meant "no", he would proffer the appropriate list of excuses to avoid said task; "I'll do it later." Put it on the list." "After the game." And the always, "Tomorrow." A more pressing question, "Who should clear the hair from our shower the drain catch?' ...I'm bald.