The Art of an RSVP

By Jamee Sims

RSVP [ahresveepeeverb, RSVPed or RSVP’d, RSVPing or RSVP’ing, noun,plural RSVP’s.

Verb: (used without object)
1. to reply to an invitation: Don’t forget to RSVP before Thursday.

2. a reply to an invitation: He sent a lovely bouquet of flowers with his RSVP.
3. (used on an invitation to indicate that the favor of a reply is requested).

Origin: 1895–1900;  < French épondez ‘il ous laît )

Yes, you read that correctly. Origin 1895! So, can you tell me why it’s so hard for people to respond with Yes, I am attending or No, I cannot?

Me either.

Over the past year I have put together a lot of events that have required an RSVP, and I would say it has got to be the most frustrating thing on the planet! Either, people don’t RSVP and just show up (RUDE!) or they do RSVP but merely a day in advance. No folks, that is not acceptable.

Lets take it back to your first party that you were invited to as a child. How excited were you to receive the invite? I can see it now; shoving the invite in your backpack and hurrying home to show it to your Mom and Dad! The whole time anxiously waiting to get back to school the next day to confirm YES! I will be attending your slumber party or No, (insert sigh) My parents said I can’t. Either way, your RSVP was in and done!

What happened to that excitement to attend/not attend an event? I can only narrow it down to a few things.

1. You are waiting on a better offer to come up. Who wants to commit too early and then realize that something better is going on? Heaven forbid your calendar becomes over booked. Oh, poor you.

2. You are waiting to see what everyone else is doing. Let me guess, you’ve probably already made a call to your friends to find out if they have RSVP’d and if they haven’t, why not? I think this goes back to the girls can’t do anything i.e. bathroom on their own.

3. You are waiting to see who has confirmed they are going. If so and so goes; I’m not, etc! I am pretty sure the host did not plan his/her invites on your feelings so if that is the attitude you are taking to said invite he/she would probably rather you don’t go.

There is a lot of work that goes into throwing a party, dinner, event, etc. Lets start with food. An accurate headcount ensures everyone leaves full and happy. How about drinks? No one wants to go down as the hostess that ran out of booze! Major party bummer and to think it could’ve been YOUR fault because you showed up with two of your friends and you didn’t RSVP! Tsk Tsk! Lastly, favors! At certain types of parties favors are expected. How do you think the hostess feels when people are leaving? Oops, sorry no favors left.

Now a days with technology coming out of our well you know whats, there is not a reason that it should be that difficult to RSVP in a timely fashion. It’s not rocket science. It common sense.




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