Row, Row, Row That Boat Gently Off My Land

by admin on April 27, 2017

I have a coworker, “Linda,” with whom I’ve socialized outside of work many times. Her husband and the man I’m dating get along well, and we’ve always enjoyed our get-togethers, although both of us have noticed a tendency to under-contribute on their part. As an example, if we are having dinner together, they will bring a salad and “forget” to bring a side dish or dessert, or whatever they agreed to contribute. We both sort of chalked this up to general frugality and it didn’t matter much until a few weeks ago.

We were invited to their home to celebrate Linda’s birthday. I asked Linda what I could bring, and she requested an appetizer and wine. Her husband “Jack” contacted me separately and asked me to bring a birthday cake as well. It’s important to note that since it was her birthday, I was happy to contribute more than the usual proportion of the meal.

But the ensuing dinner was strange. Our wine was put in the wine rack, and never served. The birthday cake was set aside and we were told that they would enjoy it the next day with their family. We were served leftover chunks of angel food cake drizzed with chocolate, from the previous day’s work celebration of Linda’s birthday. Overall, my friend and I left their home feeling like the “B Team.”

Subsequently, this couple was given a rather rickety boat, by a local church that had received it as a donation. The boat itself and the trailer are in rather rickety shape. I noticed right away that the trailer tires needed to be replaced but Jack said he would take care of it. A few weeks ago, Jack asked the man I’m dating to help move the boat from the church, and see if it is working. After several hours and several trips to local marinas, they mutually determined that the boat is not ready for use without some work, and Jack asked if my friend could keep the boat for a few days until he could determine what to do with it. Jack and Linda recently moved to a lakefront property, and during the past 3 weeks they have requested several times that we “come down for the afternoon,” which we feel is a veiled suggestion to haul the boat the 40 miles to their home. The boat trailer is truly not roadworthy, which is why I feel they are happy to
have it sit in someone else’s yard.

At the risk of inserting myself in the transaction between Jack and my boyfriend, I asked Linda today to please have Jack contact us about moving the boat, as it cannot be hauled the long distance required, and it needs to be moved from my boyfriend’s home. My boyfriend suggested that he would be happy to move it the 2 – 3 miles back to the church, where arrangements could be made at a later date.

Linda exploded with anger and told me that my boyfriend had “no right” to have moved their boat, and that it’s not their problem. I am left feeling taken advantage of and sad to see a fight having ensued over such a trivial issue. It’s too bad that their unwillingness to pay (in this case, for trailer tires on a free boat) means a strained friendship, but I feel that I’m seeing their true colors. 0903-14

I’m baffled as to why Linda thinks the boat is not “their problem” but concurrently believes your boyfriend had no right to move a boat Linda and Jack don’t view as their problem.   Basically your boyfriend is dealing with an abandoned boat with no conclusive owner on his property.   A far as I can tell, it’s his to remove or retain as he desires.

{ 84 comments… read them below or add one }

LadyV April 27, 2017 at 8:46 am

If the OP and her partner want to be polite, they could send written notification by certified mail to Linda and Jack that they have until X date to remove the boat from the OP’s property. If L&J don’t meet the deadline (and if I were OP, I would NOT extend it, as they’ve already been dealing with this for some time), then OP and her partner have every right to have the boat removed. Personally, I would haul it to the nearest junkyard – but at worst, OP’s idea of moving it back to the church sounds good. She should, of course, notify the church ahead of time and see if there are any issues with returning the boat and trailer to church property.

Side note: doesn’t this sound like the kind of case that would end up on “People’s Court”?

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Anna April 27, 2017 at 12:27 pm

I feel like I saw an episode of Judge Judy with almost this exact situation.

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Amanda H. April 27, 2017 at 2:32 pm

It certainly does sound like that kind of case. Culminating in the judge either reaming OP and her partner out for being doormats for so long, or reaming Jack and Linda out for abandoning a boat and then getting upset when someone does something about that.

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stacey April 27, 2017 at 9:10 am

If, in any social context, you notice that you are giving consistently more than the other party, then you can safely conclude that you are wanted for what you can provide and not for who you are. Such a friend or lover isn’t worth your efforts to rehabilitate in most cases, although Heaven knows that people are often stuck “trying” to do so with the misguided hope that if the other person “understood”, that the objectionable behavior would stop. The truth is that such persons do understand all too well, which is why they vehemently protest any disruption to the status quo. Your friend is a fine one to be talking of “rights” when she and her husband have managed to inconvenience you and your partner for their sole benefit. You’d be much better off avoiding her socially and remaining on professional terms at work.

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Amanda H. April 27, 2017 at 2:33 pm

This. Right here. 100%.

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Kristi April 27, 2017 at 9:20 am

When I read stories like these I am always skeptical, why would any reasonable person put up with this type of treatment from a ‘friend’? Not to say the OP made up the story, but seriously – if I’m asked to bring wine and a birthday cake for a birthday celebration, and these items are stored away and obviously going to be served to other guests, why in the world wouldn’t you put on your best confused face and say something like ‘I must have misunderstood, you asked me to bring these items to contribute to a meal celebrating your birthday…but you aren’t serving them as part of the meal? You’re serving MY cake to other guests at another time? What did I miss here?’ That’s so rude that I would not be able to stop myself from demanding an explanation from the host/hostess.

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Dee April 27, 2017 at 12:04 pm

Exactly, Kristi. The whole thing is weird, and it’s not Linda and her husband that have me scratching my head. OP and her boyfriend are regularly used by Linda and hubby for free meals, fixings for a birthday celebration, and transportation and storage of a very large piece of junk. OP and boyfriend are used most/every time they get together with Linda and hubby, so they get together some more where they’re used more, and then they offer even more free services, and now they’re complaining to everyone else that they’re being used. I’m confused.

OP describes the relationship as “friendship”. OP, and possibly her boyfriend, need to examine why they, themselves, behave this way. Linda and her ilk will always be in this world but they cannot do any “damage” without others freely buying into their scam. So, OP, what is your reason for agreeing to be used by others? Because unless you figure that out you will not be able to prevent doing the same thing again. You can’t fix Linda and you don’t even need to. She’s not the problem.

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lakey April 27, 2017 at 12:25 pm

I agree. Also, if they are so cheap that they ask you to bring a cake and wine that they intend to serve someone else, it seems obvious that allowing them to leave an unusable boat and trailer on your property is going to end badly. It’s pretty clear that they weren’t going to spend the money to fix the boat and trailer or to store them. Boyfriend should have said no.

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Dyan April 27, 2017 at 12:44 pm

exactly what I was thinking…NO you will be serving the cake I brought tonight…

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Amanda H. April 27, 2017 at 9:09 pm

Or present them with an invoice for the cake, since you don’t get to enjoy it.

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ErinAnn April 27, 2017 at 9:28 am

Time to cut off the socializing with this coworker.

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at work April 27, 2017 at 9:35 am

The birthday cake thing is bizarre. You brought a birthday cake for her and they actually said they were going to save it for the next day for family? That is so rude and strange!

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JD April 27, 2017 at 9:37 am

Yep, true colors shining through. They had you bring wine “for the dinner”, then didn’t let you have any but saved it for themselves, bring a cake that was to be served to others while serving you free leftovers from a work lunch, and are using your boyfriend’s property to park a boat for free and refuse to move it. I think your boyfriend should tow it back to the church and be done with this boat. I also think you’ll be done with this friendship when he does, but from the sound of it, no great loss there.

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viviennebzb April 27, 2017 at 9:49 am

These are not your friends, these are moochers. That whole “birthday party” fiasco would have sealed it for me, how jaw-dropping rude can you get? Do whatever you want with the trash they left on your property. After all, it’s “not their problem”, so it seems it’s up to you to solve it.

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Chris April 27, 2017 at 9:51 am

. . . I am left feeling taken advantage of . . . means a strained friendship . . .

This “friendship” has been strained for quite a while and you have been taken advantage of, repeatedly. These people are not your friends but inconsiderate leeches. You should be shed of them. Move the boat back to the church and any further invitations from these people should find you unable to attend. It might be a good idea to photograph and document the state of both the boat and trailer before and after moving it.

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LadyV April 27, 2017 at 2:55 pm

That’s a really good point about the photographs. As I said earlier, this is just the kind of thing that would end up in small claims court – and OP and her partner need as much evidence as they can get.

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Shoegal April 27, 2017 at 9:51 am

I have to comment on the dinner. Asking you to bring wine means that wine will be used at the dinner, right? Unless some other explanation was offered like – “I think I have enough wine but bring another bottle just in case.” In that instance, I would be fine with them putting the wine in the rack. No big deal, I would have been happy to help with the wine – but never even attempting to serve it or any other wine? I think that is strange. Same idea with the birthday cake – You ask me to bring a birthday cake – I’m assuming you will be serving that birthday cake at the dinner. Why would I provide a birthday cake for your family to enjoy tomorrow ? It wasn’t a gift. Perhaps Jake worried about a birthday cake and didn’t realized Linda was serving left over angel food cake as their dessert and thought the cake was, in fact, a gift.

As for the boat – yeah, the boat is their problem. They asked you to move it – and then are “angry” that you did?!??! Fine – move it back and be done with it and them.

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bern821 April 27, 2017 at 12:10 pm

I think Jake knew exactly what he was doing – he didn’t feel like going out for a cake for their birthday party the next day, so he used the excuse of “what can I bring for dinner” to scam the OP into purchasing it for him!

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Amanda H. April 27, 2017 at 2:36 pm

I can MAYBE see where Linda asked for the wine but Jack’s the one who thought it was a gift and put it on the rack, and Jack asked for the cake but Linda had plans to serve cake leftovers and thus set the “gift” cake aside for the next day. If that’s the case, though, Jack and Linda are terrible at communicating with each other, and OP is still within her rights to speak up about it.

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stacey April 27, 2017 at 4:39 pm

Your explanation is pretty reasonable. But I find it difficult to believe that this particular couple, who have “oopsed” their way out of numerous smaller commitments in the way of sharing a meal, are innocent in this particular case.

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Aleko April 28, 2017 at 1:31 am

Amanda, I can also imagine your scenario: the world’s full of couples who don’t communicate clearly on domestic admin (and husbands/boyfriends who nod and say ‘yes, dear’ without listening).

But any half-way-decent people who realised at the meal that between them they had accidentally managed to ask for a double contribution would either have confessed with embarrassment and suggested their guests take either the wine or the cake home with them, or quietly parked the office leftovers and cut and served the gift cake with vocal appreciation. There’s no possible excuse for handling it the way they did.

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Amanda H. April 28, 2017 at 8:26 pm

Oh, I completely agree. I was simply painting a scenario that could fit what Shoegal was saying about Jake not knowing about Linda’s plan to use leftover cake.

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Michelle Guddat April 27, 2017 at 10:18 am

I watch a lot of court TV shows and before getting rid of it, I would recommend starting an e-mail chain declaring a time frame for them to take the boat (at least 30 days). Tell them that if they don’t pick it up by the date specified that you are taking it to the dump (or whatever way you would get rid of it). I would keep all contact in writing rather than on the phone or in person and if they don’t pick up the boat by that date, follow through and dump it. Then dump the friends. You don’t need people in your life that take advantage of you. Just keep all the records in case they go after you for getting rid of their property.

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Michelle Guddat April 27, 2017 at 10:20 am

Also, you’ll note that I did not include the option of you or your boyfriend delivering the boat to them. If you are concerned about the worthiness of the trailer, I wouldn’t risk and accident for ungrateful people. It’s their boat, they are responsible for retrieving it. If they don’t want it, dump it.

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Victoria April 27, 2017 at 2:01 pm

Send the notification by certified mail as well, so you have a copy of their signature and the date they signed. 30 days after that signature, get rid of the boat.

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Melissa April 27, 2017 at 10:23 am

Wow my mouth was hanging open at the birthday story. If you were being hosted and brought wine and cake as a gift, then sure, put it aside for later. But when you’re asked (or offer) to contribute to a meal (which is normal for my group of friends btw) and they put your wine and dessert away for later, to share with other people? I might have taken the wine back with me 😉

I believe you’re right that you’re seeing their true colors after the boat incident. They are clearly users and takers. I see that the letter is a few years old, so hopefully by now this is just a funny story about some former “friends”!

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Dyan April 27, 2017 at 10:44 am

if it was me and my husband we would be taking the boat to the church parking lot and leaving it…DONE…there you go Linda your boat is back at the church NOT MY PROBLEM

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Vermin8 April 27, 2017 at 10:58 am

One addition to Admin’s reply – you should give them 30 days notice (written, I’d recommended certified with receipt) to remove or you will remove.
With these stories I try to play devil’s advocate. But it’s Linda’s & husband’s boat. Even if there is a benefit to your BF storing it on his property (and I can’t think what if it’s not seaworthy), he has the right to notify them that time is up. If he was paid (which would very much surprise me given their history), he should refund the prorated amount.
I might be missing something with Linda claiming it’s not their problem, but I can’t think what. And I agree with Admin that if it is not Linda & hubby’s problem, then BF can do whatever he wants with it.

What kind of people would ask guests to bring a Bday cake then refuse to serve it because they are waiting for a party with family the next day?

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Ripple April 27, 2017 at 10:59 am

I totally agree with Admin. I think your boyfriend should give them an ultimatum (maybe going to Jack rather than Linda) that the boat needs to be gone by such and such date, or he will be getting rid of it (selling, trashing, whatever). See if that spurs them to action.

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Tricia April 27, 2017 at 11:09 am

The moment that birthday cake was set aside, I would have said something. Sorry but that doesn’t play well with me.

“I brought that cake for us to share with Linda tonight. I’m sure you can make other arrangements for your family dinner tomorrow. If we’re not going to enjoy it together tonight, I will take it home and my boyfriend and I will enjoy it.”

It’s not a hostess gift. It’s the cake you were asked to bring for dinner. It’s one thing for them to keep the leftovers (which I am assuming there would be some) but to not let you have a piece of the cake you brought for the birthday dinner, nope – not acceptable.

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Dyan April 27, 2017 at 12:47 pm

you are so right that cake really bugs me who do these people think they are…

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Darshiva May 14, 2017 at 8:26 am

I would, too. I know we all say, “Well, if it were me, I would have…,” but seriously, when there is CAKE involved? Nope. You will pry the cake I provide from my cold, dead stomach.

Mind you, I like angel food cake, and drizzled with chocolate sounds nice, but in comparison to a birthday cake that I provide (I would have chosen something scrumptious!), it would not compare. And even if it did compare, Gosh darn it, I brought that cake expecting to consume it, and my mouth was all set to experience THAT flavor, so don’t do that to me!

I don’t drink wine, but that wouldn’t have set well with me, either, since it was not brought as an unexpected/unrequested hostess gift, but as an actual contribution to the dinner. “Will you please bring the wine and the cake?” means you WILL be consuming it that night.

Did this guy even say please, when he made the request?

Seriously, the cake would have been the last straw for me. If it were a first offense, I probably would have forgiven her later (although I would have taken the cake home with me!), but as this was after a long string of incidences where they repeatedly mooch off you, I would have, at the least, said “No more dining with you. I’ll see you at the office, but that’s all.” The boat would have been a non-issue, because any “Will you do me a favor?” would have been answered with an immediate “NO!” and a “Don’t even tell me what it is, because I won’t do it for you.”

This goes double if I brought a Carvel Ice Cream cake, and triple if I made the cake myself. Do NOT mess with the cake!

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Dippy April 27, 2017 at 11:12 am

I would tell them they have 7 days to remove it or you will dispose of it. Case closed.

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Lyn April 27, 2017 at 11:13 am

Wow! They sure sound like “users”

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DGS April 27, 2017 at 11:14 am

I’m sorry to say this, OP, but you are definitely the B-team and a convenient dumping ground (dumping marina?) for Linda and Jack. They have been taking advantage of you and your generous nature. Based on their behavior and Linda’s indignant reaction, it is not only appropriate to move the boat back to the church but also to limit your interactions with Linda and Jack, aka The Moochers, to work-related issues only.

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bern821 April 27, 2017 at 11:19 am

Um, is it just me – or would anyone else EVER have agreed to do anything for/with either half of this couple again? I mean after they asked me to buy the birthday cake that they then said they would enjoy with their family the next day? Or obviously that I provided a bottle of wine for their next day celebration? That would have been the very last social contact I ever had w/these leeches!!! Just wow!!
Hopefully your boyfriend has already dumped that boat back in its original location. 🙂

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Ty April 27, 2017 at 2:28 pm

I totally agree. After the birthday incident where they essentially got someone else to buy supplies for another party that the supplier wasn’t even invited to, that would have been the end of the “friendship” for me. Real friends don’t treat their friends like that.

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Michelle April 27, 2017 at 11:40 am

I agree with the previous commenters- give them a set time limit for removing the boat, in writing, and if they don’t comply, your boyfriend can dump the boat.

As far as the birthday party thing-um, no. You don’t invite people to your party, ask them to bring the cake and then say “oh we are saving the cake for the family party tomorrow”. Since Linda had no problem with putting the cake aside she probably had Jack call and ask OP to bring it. What kind of people ask friends to provide food for a meal they don’t get to partake in? Moocher friends. I would definitely not be socializing with this couple again.

P.S. Since the submission was a few years ago, if OP is still visiting the site, I’m sure we would all love an update.

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admin April 27, 2017 at 12:03 pm

The OP has responded in the comments.

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Victoria April 27, 2017 at 2:04 pm

I’ve skimmed through all of the comments, but can’t find the comment from the OP. Is the comment still awaiting moderation?

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admin April 27, 2017 at 2:47 pm

Nope, it’s in the comment section.

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Kristi April 27, 2017 at 2:41 pm

Admin – I don’t see the OP’s reply?

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admin April 27, 2017 at 2:46 pm

It’s here. Clearly labeled as “The OP”.

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ADB_BWG April 27, 2017 at 2:51 pm

That date/time is the OP response to the breast-pumping photographer blog entry.

LadyV April 27, 2017 at 3:26 pm

I think the one you’re talking about is from yesterday’s “Breast Pumping Photographer” blog.

CW April 27, 2017 at 8:58 pm

I’m not seeing it either….

Amanda H. April 27, 2017 at 9:17 pm

There’s no commenter labeled “The OP” on this story, admin. There is on the one about the wedding photographer, though.

Coralreef April 27, 2017 at 12:38 pm

For the boat, a set date for removal along with a paper trail of the discussion is an absolute must in this situation.

As for the cake and wine, all I can say is Huh?!? Who does that? Keeping leftovers, I understand, but keeping the requested cake and wine for someone else? No, just no.

Not opening that gift bottle of wine is not a faux-pas in my book, as long as wine is served with the meal, and not just a drop at the bottom of the glass. I know I personally prefer to match the wine to the food and I will supply the equivalent of 1/2 bottle per person, with at least one or two spare bottles, just in case. We may not drink what you brought over, but you will not be stocking my wine rack because I’m mooching.

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pennywit April 27, 2017 at 2:16 pm

A boat is enough of a big-ticket item that the “friend” might get litigious if OP’s boyfriend moves it. I have no idea what the laws regarding bailments are in OP’s jurisdiction, but OP might want to spend a little quality time with law books (or perhaps with a local lawyer) before hauling it away.

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Miss Herring April 28, 2017 at 3:01 pm

I agree, this is very worrying. From my (incredibly hazy) memories of law classes for my accounting degree, OP and the boyfriend would be in the clear for getting rid of the boat, as he (they) received nothing in exchange for holding it (no bail, as you mentioned). However, that wouldn’t prevent this from becoming a knotty issue in court. Also, I wonder if they might get charged with littering/dumping if they just stick it back on church property. What a mess!

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AMC April 27, 2017 at 2:22 pm

Linda and Jack are grade A moochers. Given them a deadline to move the boat (two weeks?) and tell them if it’s not gone by then, your boyfriend will haul it to the church or otherwise dispose of it. After that’s done, lose their number.

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Annie April 27, 2017 at 2:30 pm

Looking for original submission and OP’s update. Can’t locate it–any tips for my search?

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admin April 27, 2017 at 2:47 pm

The original submission is the blog post. The update is a comment made by “The OP” on April 26 at 1:18 pm.

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jokergirl129 April 27, 2017 at 8:38 pm

I can’t find “The OP” comment/update either. All of the comments I see have been made today.

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Krista April 27, 2017 at 9:06 pm

Admin, you’re referring to the OP of the wedding blog from yesterday, April 26. Annie was asking about the OP of the boat blog post from today, April 27.

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Amanda H. April 27, 2017 at 9:14 pm

Admin, that would be for the breastfeeding photographer story, not this boat story.

http://www.etiquettehell.com/?p=5101#comments

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Ygraine April 27, 2017 at 9:31 pm

I can’t find it either. Can someone take pity on me and provide a link?

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JAN April 27, 2017 at 10:02 pm

Not finding the OPs comment either.

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Lara April 27, 2017 at 10:23 pm

I’m another one who can’t find the OP’s comment I can’t actually see any comment from April 26, they’re all dated April 27. There are 44 comments showing for this post. Technical issue? It doesn’t seem like I’m the only one.

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Nerokitty April 27, 2017 at 10:45 pm

I can’t find the OP’s update and this story shows that it was posted on April 27th, so I can’t see anything posted on the 26th…

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Muffy April 27, 2017 at 11:20 pm

Hello Admin, I have read every comment and re-checked and cannot see the reply from the OP either.

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KRF April 27, 2017 at 11:35 pm

Admin, are you confusing this with yesterday’s post? That post has a response from OP at 1:18 PM. This post does not have an update from OP.

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admin April 28, 2017 at 12:00 am

Probably. THere were three requests for the OP to update and no doubt I assumed all three pertained to the same post.

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SJ April 27, 2017 at 11:23 pm

I can’t find it either. Weird.

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Ames April 27, 2017 at 2:35 pm

I took the ‘not their problem’ as her saying it wasn’t the church’s problem.
They gave the boat away, and probably wouldn’t want it sitting in their parking lot.

Either way, you’re probably going to lose the friendship over one of two things.
That you get resentful and angry that they’re taking advantage and refusing to move the boat.
OR, that you’ve moved it and now they are mad.
I’d rather lose the friends because I stood up for myself and refused to be taken advantage of any longer.

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Yarnspinner April 27, 2017 at 2:42 pm

Re: Birthday cake: “Oh, why I didn’t realize you wanted us to be at that party as well. Thank you for inviting us. We will be here and excited to meet your family!”

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SJ April 27, 2017 at 11:23 pm

Yes!

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Amanda April 27, 2017 at 2:56 pm

Put the boat/trailer on the street and let the town tow it as an abandoned vehicle.

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JJ April 27, 2017 at 3:55 pm

These sound like people you should stop being friends with you. Very soon. their true colors are coming out they are gimme pigs who expect everyone to give them a mile but they aren’t willing to give a mile to anyone else or help out.

As frustrating as the boat thing (love your boyfriends idea of taking it back to the church so the couple is forced to deal with it on their own again while they decide. Smart boyfriend) I gotta say I’m really hung on the cake and food thing. I mean wow! You are nice enough as a couple to bring the majority of the meal, the wine and he asks you to bring a nice birthday cake assuming you will all share part of it and the “friends” just don’t serve it. They basically treated you as a grocery store servant and wanted you to buy stuff for them for the next day to use with other people who aren’t you two. Sounds like they just couldn’t be bothered to spend money or drive to go get a cake themselves for the next day so they took advantage of your kindness. Bad enough they took the wine which was asked for the dinner as well but I know it’s not uncommon for people to serve a special wine with a dinner and put aside the one they got sometimes. But the cake was for their family the next day? Heck no. I’d have honestly considered asking for it back if I had no interest in being friends with these people anymore. I’d just go in the kitchen as I left, take it and say, “we can’t deal with your guys frugalness anymore it’s to much”.

I’m with everyone else here on the boat issue: give them a clear date of this is when you will come get this boat or it will be going back to the church yard who will have control of it again unless you go get it. For legal purpose to cover yourself even write it up if you have to or save the verbal text of it in case god forbid they cheapo couple decides to come back at you over it for legal reasons. I wouldn’t even call this a “strained friendship” at this point I’d call this moochers who are taking advantage of you guys. And you need to meet some new friends or reconnect with old friends who like you two as you are without taking advantage of you constantly.

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Shelia L April 27, 2017 at 6:52 pm

Jack and Linda are classic mooches and totally in the wrong for taking advantage of the OP and her boyfriend, but I think the OP should have just backed slowly away from the friendship and stayed out of the boat transaction.

She works with Linda. While I understand her frustration, inserting herself into the middle of this has created tension that is not only going to affect her, but colleagues and possibly clients as well. Linda does not seem like the type to check her personal feelings at the door for the sake of workplace harmony.

The boyfriend needs to handle this with Jack. I like the suggestion of giving him 30 days in writing and then disposing of it as he sees fit, but I’d want to run that past a lawyer or at least look up the local laws concerning abandoned property before I did it.

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Aleko April 28, 2017 at 1:39 am

I agree 100% with you that OP needs to stay out of this to prevent it spilling over into her workplace. The boat is on the BF’s property, so it is legally and practically his problem, not hers – she doesn’t live there. And it was Jack who first asked him to get involved with the boat, so it is perfectly legitimate for him to deal specifically with Jack and leave OP and Linda right out of it.

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Beth April 27, 2017 at 10:08 pm

Like others, I would love to read the OP’s follow up comment, which was posted on April 26, 2017, according to the admin. But the only comments visible here are from April 27, 2017. What am I missing?

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admin April 28, 2017 at 12:01 am

My mistake. I was referring to another post.

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Rebecca April 27, 2017 at 11:13 pm

Oh I can think of so many things to say. “Not your problem? I’m afraid it IS your problem as we are going to be removing the boat from the property in X number of days if you don’t get it before then, and it’s certainly not going to be OUR problem.” “No right? Are you saying we have no right to remove abandoned items from our own property?”

I knew someone exactly like this. She left a very large item of furniture at my parents’ place, when I moved in to help them downsize and prepare to sell the house. She kept saying she would come and get it. Six months passed. Seemingly she didn’t read her emails, as I emailed a bunch of time asking her to come and get it. Then I moved it outside (weather was nice out, but no predicting for how long). I sent her another email to say it was outside and she could pick it up there. She immediately sent an angry email (oh, so she DOES see her emails) saying how dare I put it outside where it would be exposed to the elements, why didn’t I at least take it up to the garage (up a steep gravel driveway and that thing was heavy and took 2 strong guys just to move it a few feet to outside the basement door), how could I possibly think that was an ok thing to do, etc. I replied that we were not a storage facility and she’d been asked to take it away for months. Amazingly, she managed to have it retrieved (by conning a couple of local lads I assume) by the very next day. Amazing how she managed to take action once she thought her stuff might get damaged.

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Amanda H. April 28, 2017 at 8:32 pm

This is where sending the very formal notice that the owner of the item has So Long and No Longer to come claim their item usually works. When there’s a threat of loss or damage to their stuff, that’s when they start to care. When the “free storage” isn’t going to be free storage anymore.

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Aleko April 28, 2017 at 4:00 am

I notice that in the universal condemnation of the hosts putting aside the birthday cake contributed by their guests for another party next day, we all seem to have missed the wrongness of what they did serve for dessert instead. Giving guests obvious leftovers is *always* wrong, in fact downright insulting, unless they are close friends and the invitation makes clear what’s on offer: ‘Hey, we’ve got far more yummy cake left over than we can manage by ourselves. Why don’t you and Bob grab a bottle and come over tonight to help us eat it?’

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Darshiva May 14, 2017 at 8:33 am

Yeah. There are friends with whom you can do that, but you’re right. You absolutely have to tell them that is the purpose for the invite. “We have too many left-overs. Please share them with us,” and make sure they are GOOD left-overs.

Either that, or the “spur-of-the-moment” invite. “Hey, I don’t know what’s for dinner, but there’s always plenty. Want to stop by tonight? The wife won’t mind!” Of course, the wife usually does mind, unless this was planned out in advance, as a way to get rid of left-overs. The “pot luck” dinner invite has been done many times. The trick is for the wife (Why is it always the wife?) to give her husband a “look,” before turning a brilliant smile on the guests, and saying, “Of course we have enough! I’ll just go into the kitchen and, uh, redistribute some things.” Then, when the guests are leaving, you flash “the look” at the husband again, while you are politely hurrying the guests out, and once they are gone, you both have a good laugh, while you imagine what they are imagining about the fight you two must surely be having at this point.

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Kay_L April 28, 2017 at 9:27 pm

I’d tow the boat over to the church and leave it there. Or take them up on their offer to come to the lake house and when you arrive without the boat, tell them that you got as far as where the church was before the trailer fell apart and so you left it there…

And if you bring a bottle of wine, bring an opener and pour yourself a glass as soon as you arrive.

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Jill April 30, 2017 at 12:33 pm

I am the OP and this story was submitted years ago… as an update, my boyfriend did return the boat to the church yard and advised Jack that he was doing so. Jack had the trailer (with boat on it) flatbedded down to their home, where he spent a few months attempting to repair it. The boat was found to have a rotten floor and it remains on their property.

This was a couple that we had a lot of shared history with and although I am no longer dating the boyfriend and I have moved out of state, we remain friendly. Last Fall Linda and Jack entertained me with breakfast in their home when I was in town and they were very gracious – and I asked at that time if they still had the boat and was told “yes,” and that they were hoping to continue to try and fix it.

Thanks for the advice and it would have been helpful a few years ago, but fortunately everything ended up fine.

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Angie May 1, 2017 at 12:51 am

Thanks for the update. When I read it a few days ago, taking it back to the church was my thought. Glad it worked out.

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Yasuragi May 1, 2017 at 6:33 am

Thank you for the update.

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Cattra May 1, 2017 at 11:09 pm

Thanks for the update OP. Have you been asked to provide any cakes/wine or anything additional to a meal?

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Emmy May 4, 2017 at 7:13 pm

I’m still in shock about the wine and cake. It sounds like she used you guys to supply the wine and cake for her birthday with family the next day. After her tirade about the boat, I think it is time to cut the ‘friendship’ with them.

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admin April 28, 2017 at 12:07 am

Yep.

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