Note to those for whom getting there first is a novelty: There are ways of coping with this predicament, which even for the reliably late is sometimes unavoidable.
- Relax. If necessary, plan to be late yourself.
- Make them come to you.
- Tell them to meet at 9:30 when the real time is 10.
- Arrange your own transportation; don't depend on them.
- Don't leave until you have called and verified their departure time. Then call again to verify their actual departure.
- Give them your itinerary and let them catch up.
- Never buy them tickets before they've arrived.
- Never let them buy or hold yours.
- Meet at a bookstore or other browsable site.
- Be sure a pay phone is handy.
- If at home, clean house while you wait; it lets you keep busy while still worrying about where they are.
- Meet at their place; you won't have to expose yourself to waiting in public, and you can nag them to get going.
- Bring a magazine. (A book is too weighty, physically and intellectually, and thus pathetic.)
- Order without them.
- Leave before they show up.
- Be sure to be doing something when they finally come, then pick one of the following strategies, depending on your pride level:
- Act as if all went according to plan; exact revenge later.
- Don't stint on dirty looks, but say nothing.
- Throw a fit, with tears if possible.
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Copyright William Swislow 1992