Author Topic: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter  (Read 3241 times)

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Miss Unleaded

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2012, 03:22:09 PM »

Saying you saw someone isn't gossip. Especially when it's seems so innocent.

It isn't necessarily gossip, but in my view it does carry a gossipy tone.  Maybe I'm biased here, but if I were in son's place, and someone reported to my mother that they saw me in a certain restaurant, the result would be my mother grilling me about it: what was I doing in such a posh restaurant? Can I really afford to dine there? Who was I seeing? What was Doris doing there? Blah blah blah. 

If I was Doris I'd figure that if son wanted his mother to know, he'd tell her himself.

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I don't know how to describe the sort of person I'm getting the impression sister is. I've only run into a few of them and never anyone I've been close to because I find this trait off-putting. They are people who regularly *hide* things that are trivial and have no need to be hidden. I'm not talking about someone who genuinely doesn't think to or forgets to mention. It's a person who acts as if it's very deliberate on their part not to say something. After awhile it just gets creepy and weird.

This is just a guess on my part that the sister is this way from the LW's description.

Speaking as someone who has accidentally divulged information that I thought was innocent but actually turned out to be quite sensitive, I have a policy not to discuss third parties unless I know the matter is in the public domain so to speak and it concerns the person I am conversing with.  I don't think of myself as being 'creepy and weird', honestly.  I'm genuinely surprised that someone would think that of me.  Could you explain it a bit better please?

Queen of Clubs

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2012, 03:27:40 PM »
It's clear that the LW thinks it's a pattern, but I also don't really get the significance of why it's important.  To me it sounds like the sister doesn't want to engage in gossip.

What I found most interesting about the letter:

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I know she has kept secrets about other people, and when I'd find out from someone else, she would apologize. But why can't she be open and trustworthy?

In my mind, not divulging secrets IS being trustworthy.

I wonder if the LW thinks that her sister needs to tell her everything in order to be trustworthy.

I'm sort of on the sister's side on this - as much as I can be with the limited information.  My sister is rather envious of the relationship my nephew has with his in-laws and seems to think that she needs to know *everything* that he does.  I've found the best way to keep the peace is to not mention anything he tells me or, if it's something she didn't know, she'll flip her lid, phone him up and tell him off.  She *has* to know everything first or it's a major issue.  He's in his early 30s, and their relationship is a bit strained lately.

So...I wonder if the LW is at all like that.

O'Dell

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2012, 04:42:55 PM »

Saying you saw someone isn't gossip. Especially when it's seems so innocent.

It isn't necessarily gossip, but in my view it does carry a gossipy tone.  Maybe I'm biased here, but if I were in son's place, and someone reported to my mother that they saw me in a certain restaurant, the result would be my mother grilling me about it: what was I doing in such a posh restaurant? Can I really afford to dine there? Who was I seeing? What was Doris doing there? Blah blah blah. 

If I was Doris I'd figure that if son wanted his mother to know, he'd tell her himself.

Quote
I don't know how to describe the sort of person I'm getting the impression sister is. I've only run into a few of them and never anyone I've been close to because I find this trait off-putting. They are people who regularly *hide* things that are trivial and have no need to be hidden. I'm not talking about someone who genuinely doesn't think to or forgets to mention. It's a person who acts as if it's very deliberate on their part not to say something. After awhile it just gets creepy and weird.

This is just a guess on my part that the sister is this way from the LW's description.

Speaking as someone who has accidentally divulged information that I thought was innocent but actually turned out to be quite sensitive, I have a policy not to discuss third parties unless I know the matter is in the public domain so to speak and it concerns the person I am conversing with.  I don't think of myself as being 'creepy and weird', honestly.  I'm genuinely surprised that someone would think that of me.  Could you explain it a bit better please?

Like I said it's hard to describe. It's like if someone asks why they didn't say, they act smug, like they are playing the childish "I know something you don't" game. Often they just shrug and/or offer no explanation. If they explain, say they forgot or didn't think it was worth mentioning or even say what you've said, it comes off as a lie. If you saw it you might wonder if they had been up to something themselves and were hoping it wouldn't come up, but it's more.

A lot of people I know just chat about random social encounters. I could easily see someone saying "Oh I saw your son the other day, but he looked busy with some associates so I didn't say hi. I didn't want to bother him." Most of us wouldn't grill each other about that. I'm not talking about people who have external reasons, like people who would grill them.
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Sterling

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #18 on: December 10, 2012, 05:11:01 PM »
Honestly I don't get why she would have mentioned it.  I often see random people out and about.  Am I suppose to writei t all down to somehow report back to other people.

"I had lunch at the Fish house and saw Paul.  I went to the book store and saw Jane.  Hmm let me look and see who else I randomly saw while running around town."

Why?  To me that seems like the least interesting thing in the world to talk about and I don't understand why someone would find that I was trying to "hide" something.
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MrsJWine

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2012, 05:57:22 PM »
Honestly I don't get why she would have mentioned it.  I often see random people out and about.  Am I suppose to writei t all down to somehow report back to other people.

"I had lunch at the Fish house and saw Paul.  I went to the book store and saw Jane.  Hmm let me look and see who else I randomly saw while running around town."

Why?  To me that seems like the least interesting thing in the world to talk about and I don't understand why someone would find that I was trying to "hide" something.

Hah! My thoughts exactly. I actually laughed out loud when I read this because the letter was so hilariously trivial. I might put more stock in her complaints about her sister if her illustrative anecdote weren't so idiotic. If I happened to remember something like this while talking to a relevant person, I'd probably mention it. But the chances of me remembering it are slim to none.


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AnnaJ

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #20 on: December 10, 2012, 06:19:38 PM »
I was also confused when I read this and thought I'd missed something.  The older I get the less inclined I am to say things like "Oh, I saw Mya in the bakery with Paul" mostly because, as someone mentioned upthread, I may unwittingly spill the beans or start rumors and don't want to do either.

That the LR's sister was at a restaurant was none of the LR's business that I can see, unless there is some deep background that isn't stated.

Raintree

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #21 on: December 11, 2012, 02:14:52 AM »
I also know people who are weird and cagey about things that have no reason to be weird and cagey about. It's one thing if they want to be cagey about their own personal matters, as that is their right, but this one person I know projects the caginess onto others, ie assumes everyone else has the same issues.

But without more info, this letter is just kind of strange. I sometimes run into people and don't think to mention it to others. Also, the son told his mother himself that he ran into Doris, so it was obviously no secret that he was there.

Jules1980

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2012, 02:50:37 AM »
I figured that Doris thought the son would mention it and thought nothing else about it.  I mean, the son did tell her so maybe he told Aunt Doris, "I'll have to tell mom about running into you here.  Have a great holiday!"  or some variant on his way out or something.  I also thought it was weird that she was obsessing on why Doris didn't tell her.  Would she have been that obsessive if Doris had told her and not the son?  Or is just Doris that has to report every one she sees while out and about?

RingTailedLemur

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #23 on: December 11, 2012, 05:26:39 AM »
Like I said it's hard to describe. It's like if someone asks why they didn't say, they act smug, like they are playing the childish "I know something you don't" game. Often they just shrug and/or offer no explanation. If they explain, say they forgot or didn't think it was worth mentioning or even say what you've said, it comes off as a lie. If you saw it you might wonder if they had been up to something themselves and were hoping it wouldn't come up, but it's more.

A lot of people I know just chat about random social encounters. I could easily see someone saying "Oh I saw your son the other day, but he looked busy with some associates so I didn't say hi. I didn't want to bother him." Most of us wouldn't grill each other about that. I'm not talking about people who have external reasons, like people who would grill them.

I'm sorry, O'Dell, but I am really struggling to understand your viewpoint.  It sounds like you are saying that if someone doesn't tell you everyone they randomly bumped into since you last spoke, they are being childish or lying?   :-\

artk2002

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #24 on: December 11, 2012, 09:27:36 AM »
I don't know how to describe the sort of person I'm getting the impression sister is. I've only run into a few of them and never anyone I've been close to because I find this trait off-putting. They are people who regularly *hide* things that are trivial and have no need to be hidden. I'm not talking about someone who genuinely doesn't think to or forgets to mention. It's a person who acts as if it's very deliberate on their part not to say something. After awhile it just gets creepy and weird.

This is just a guess on my part that the sister is this way from the LW's description.

I'm trying to figure out why this is something where it matters one way or another whether it's "hidden" or not. It's so trivial as to be ridiculous. So what if the sister "hides" this fact? Why is it an important fact in the first place, one that must be shared?

Hiding a substantive piece of information is one thing -- I could see being upset if the sister had seen the son robbing a bank -- but going out to a restaurant? And if there's a pattern of "hiding" here, this is the best/most egregious example that the LW could find to submit? It makes me wonder how trivial the other examples are. "My sister knew my husband went to the bathroom and didn't tell me! Waaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh!"

Like I said it's hard to describe. It's like if someone asks why they didn't say, they act smug, like they are playing the childish "I know something you don't" game. Often they just shrug and/or offer no explanation. If they explain, say they forgot or didn't think it was worth mentioning or even say what you've said, it comes off as a lie. If you saw it you might wonder if they had been up to something themselves and were hoping it wouldn't come up, but it's more.

So? Behavior like that is so horrible it warrants a letter to an agony column. Besides, I think you (and the LW) are projecting your own feelings onto the other person. Are they really "smug" or are you simply interpreting it that way. Calling an omission like that a "lie" is way over the top. I'm not a video camera, set to replay every event in my life or else be accused of lying.

I get not liking secrets -- I don't like them myself. But this doesn't even begin to rise to the level of a secret.

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A lot of people I know just chat about random social encounters. I could easily see someone saying "Oh I saw your son the other day, but he looked busy with some associates so I didn't say hi. I didn't want to bother him." Most of us wouldn't grill each other about that. I'm not talking about people who have external reasons, like people who would grill them.

Again, why is it so important that every encounter like this be told? That's what you and the LW are implying -- that every encounter must be told to you, or the other person is misbehaving.
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bow lines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. -Mark Twain

pierrotlunaire0

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #25 on: December 11, 2012, 10:06:19 AM »
I also was puzzled by the letter in that the LW seemed extremely upset about ....what?  It would make a little more sense if there was some repeated pattern of behavior, but the LW didn't make that clear.

I started to wonder if she was upset because her sister was at a very nice restaurant and the LW didn't think she should be there.  As in, I help to support her and she is splurging on the side.  I don't know.

Also, I am not familiar with this column.  Are the comments always so very rude and disparaging?
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O'Dell

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #26 on: December 11, 2012, 11:53:13 AM »
I've said in my posts that I'm referring to only a few people who show a *pattern* of the sort of behavior that the LW describes and *NOT* everyone who doesn't mention trivial incidents. And I've tried to describe the rare type of person who I suspect, not know but suspect, that the LW is describing. If anyone at this point chooses to think I'm referring to you and that I think *you* are creepy and weird, then that is your issue and not mine.
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RingTailedLemur

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Re: S/O outdated cell phone - first letter
« Reply #27 on: December 11, 2012, 03:49:57 PM »
That isn't the way it sounded, O'Dell.