Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Répondez s'il vous plaît

. . . a French phrase, meaning, in English, "Please respond" (or variations, thereof).

Shortening it to the more-common acronym, most people are familiar with this expression simply as: RSVP.

I've had this blog post swirling around for several months now; in fact, it's been swirling longer than Swirlings has even been in existence.

There ya go.

Tex and I will be hosting a party in a few weeks; I guess that's why this topic has wandered out of my grey matter's recesses and has, once again, brought itself to the forefront of my thoughts.

. . . Especially since, so far, I would estimate that only about 5%  of the invitations we sent have produced actual RSVP responses (whether yes or no).


Let's talk about RSVP protocol, shall we?

I grew up with the understanding that any invitation bearing "RSVP" required a response from the invitees; whether such response was a "no" or a "yes".  Additionally, the response was to be prompt.

To me, it's simply good manners.  Taking that even further, I also perceive it as a gesture of caring and friendship.  (Admittedly, this particular paragraph is a bit difficult for me to write - I am reminded of how often I show poor manners regarding how long it takes me to answer personal emails . . . but, oddly enough, I do always make sure that my RSVPs are made in a timely manner.  Go figure.)

Whether it's a formal affair or a casual get-together, taking the time to acknowledge an invitation tells the host that you care about them . . . and also that you care about the planning details involved.

And, that's what it's all about.   Caring and friendship aside, hosting a party requires planning.  If there's food involved, there's even more planning involved.  I'm not talking about pot luck type of events where everyone brings a dish to share; I'm speaking of parties where all of the refreshments are provided by the host.

Knowing how many people plan on coming to a party significantly helps the host to determine how much food to prepare.  It wouldn't be the best to prepare food for 50 people if only 10 show up.  It would be even worse to have food for 10 people and then have 50 people ring your doorbell.

See the value in RSVPing to your invites?

I'd like to hear your views on RSVPs.

Do you always respond to RSVP-bearing invitations; regardless as to whether or not you plan on attending?

Do you only respond if your answer is yes?

Do you not respond if your answer is "no" and expect the host to properly translate your silence?

Do you even care?

Should the RSVP notation on the invitations be written as "Regrets Only" (meaning that the hostess is signifying that she will  interpret all non-responses as "yes")?

What say you on this matter?  I'm genuinely interested.

You can either respond here, in the blog comments . . . -or- if you and I are Facebook friends, you can respond there.  I look forward to reading your thoughts!

Thanks for reading; y'all be blessed,


  1. If an RSVP were requested, I would always, always do so, yes, no, or otherwise ;) I can't imagine anyone requesting "regrets only". I certainly wouldn't. Isn't that assuming people are coming by default?

    1. Hi Pam!

      I'm not sure of the logic behind "regrets only". I do know that in recent years, I have seen it pop up on various invitations . . . but even then, I will respond regardless as to whether or not I'll be attending.

      I, too, am not a fan of it. RSVP - plain and simple. "Yes" or "no" (and in some cases, even a "maybe" every now and then). And, in our age of electronic communication, one can even RSVP by text or email. Whichever way a person chooses to respond, it's only going to take seconds or maybe up to a couple of minutes out of their day. It's that easy. :)

      Thanks for reading!

  2. Always! It drives me crazy when people don't..........

    1. Yes, you do, Stephanie - and it's always been very much appreciated! And not to sound "older generation", but your quick RSVPs have also always been something that has impressed me about you.

      Thanks for reading!