Thursday, February 21, 2008

Calling Miss Manners

Dear Miss Manners,

I may have recently committed a well-intentioned lapse in etiquette. A friend (co-worker, more than a mere acquaintance, but not exactly a Saturday-night kind of friend, although I'd like her to be) recently emailed me with a request to borrow a recipe. She's admired my culinary prowess before, so this is a compliment, but she was requesting a recipe to serve to her book club, relating to a specific book. Now, I'm an English-major bookworm nerd-type, and I was very excited to hear about a book club with people my age in it, reading books that I like. Naturally, I provided her with a recipe that I thought she'd like (well, I actually tailored a specific recipe for her and the book, but she doesn't need to know that!), but I insinuated in my reply that I'd love to be invited to her book club. I joked that I would give her a recipe in exchange for an invite to book club. Was this in poor form? I know it's rude to invite oneself anywhere, but I felt that by mentioning the club specifically in the email, she left the door open. After all, it's equally rude to mention a party to someone who's not invited, correct? I don't want to appear intrusive, but I really want to cultivate a friendship with this person, and I really *really* want to join a book club. Did I put my e-foot in my e-mouth? Or was my subtle hint an acceptable nudge? Please advise.




Ninotchka said...

Actually, I don't think it's rude to casually mention events other people aren't invited to. That's a fact of life. Don't get me wrong, I'm not an exclusive person at all. I'm more of the " should stop by and join us!" type (if I'm hosting, that is) but I know some people are very particular about the number of members allowed to these types of gatherings. Sometimes you get the "perfect group" together number- and chemistry-wise and they don't want to tip the balance. I mean, that's why it's a club and not a convention. Know what I mean?

If you want to join a book club, check out your local B&N or library. They're a bit more inclusive, I think and better yet you get to meet NEW people.


Julie said...

I'm gonna take a more Machiavellian approach. Did it work? If it did, I think it was an excellent idea. :)

Anonymous said...

I think book clubs are great when you get the right group like Ninotchka wrote. I think it was a brave thing to do and you put yourself out there. The fact that you are wanting to get out and make new friends is the only thing that really matters even if it doesn't result in a book club invite. Why not set up your own? Then you can be the one to establish a group that works for you. Have you read the Bride Stripped Bare?