That’s No Excuse

Years and years ago, we were reading… something. Possibly an Emily Post column? Or a Miss Manners column. More likely the latter. Anyway, the topic at hand was excuses. And Miss Manners came down extremely hard as an anti-excuse gal. “You didn’t make it to my dinner party and my seating was ruined,” she wrote. “I don’t want to hear excuses, that your dog was sick or the babysitter never showed up. The night was ruined. It doesn’t matter. An apology is enough.”

And we were so enraged by that for so long (obviously, since this was probably a good 13 years ago). “If it’s not your fault, why should the hostess be mad at you?” we huffed to ourselves. But over time, we came to agree with Miss Manners. Excuses don’t matter, ultimately. Even the best excuse is no excuse. Simply apologize sincerely and let everyone move on with their lives. Which is why we very rarely traffic in making excuses. We try (and more often than not fail) to simply own up to our mistakes, apologize, and then expect everyone to move on. Try it for a week yourselves and see how it fits.

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