Service of Opposites Attract When it Comes to Being on Time

May 23rd, 2022

Categories: Bloomingdale's, Late, Marriage, Opposites Attract, Time

I’ve written previously about tardiness in a post that claimed that running late was good for your health and in one that compared being late before and after mobile phones. Today I’ve chosen a different approach.

As I waited for a friend outside the restaurant Forty Carrots at Bloomingdale’s in Manhattan I took a look at the luggage in the adjacent department. Biding my time I picked up a tag which I couldn’t read without my glasses. Seeing my apparent interest a salesman approached and after I established that I was killing time we began to chat about whether we always arrived on time or were chronically late. I’d already concluded that half of many couples were either/or and the other the opposite. This causes friction and illustrates the adage that opposites attract. He admitted he was the one who was on time and his wife was the late one.

My husband was a last minute person and often late and I’d go nuts waiting for him and running late as a result. To save my sanity, when he’d ask I’d move back the departure time on our yearly trips abroad so I could relax as we sat helpless in airport traffic. I so disliked being late that I’d misstate the time for dinner invitations too. In retrospect, I would tolerate this maddening habit of his if I could share his life a few more years.

Some friends relate similar time discrepancies with their significant others although a cousin said that she and her husband were both on time. She remembered her father-in-law who was late to all social events–dinner in his home even if he was already in the house.

Do you share a timeline with close friends and family members or do you clash? Do you subscribe to the saying about opposites attracting?

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6 Responses to “Service of Opposites Attract When it Comes to Being on Time”

  1. Helen Said:

    Oh yes both my daughters have what I call “the procrastination gene!” Got it from dad! I’m the opposite. Example: Lisa has a zoo and when she was living here the occasional visit to the veterinarian. It’s only two miles away. I’d be ready to go at 30-40 minutes ahead. All I heard was…we’re going to have to wait! What’s the hurry? I’d finally get her moving 15 minutes before arrival time. I reminded her if we’re not there on time they’ll give your appointment away. Anyway I got really good at calling from the car saying we are on our way please don’t give our appointment away. Then I’d make up a reason why we were running late. DRIVES ME INSANE!!!

  2. Kathleen Said:

    Agree that being on time is what I appreciate. But a family member always leaves only at the time that he/she thinks it allows to the minute. Of course, there is always traffic, a detour, a wrong turn , etc. So we always arrive some time later! Drives me crazy. But you can’t change an old dog and his tricks.

  3. Jeanne Byington Said:


    The trick is to tell Lisa that the appointment is at Noon when it isn’t until 12:30. You can then relax.

  4. Jeanne Byington Said:


    When he could no longer run to the finish line–literally in some cases–my husband seemed to forget that so it was ever more important to camouflage the true time we were expected somewhere. We once dashed on to the train we took upstate every week by sneaking through the conductor’s door which was the last to close–but had started to–and I was beside myself. As I traipsed, breathless, dragging my suitcase, handbag and tote bag with laptop to the front of a crowded Friday night train I swore NEVER AGAIN! At rush the next train, in the day, wasn’t long in coming.

  5. Helen Said:

    That’s a brilliant idea. However miss Lisa and her boyfriend now an hour from here. So she has another vet. I guess they’re in time most of the time. Luckily the folks at the local to me veterinarian knew us and always cut us some slack. It’s pretty hard to be mad at the pretty girl in the power wheelchair.

  6. lucrezia Said:

    Society simply could not function with everyone ignoring the existence of the clock. Who gets along better with who seems to be more about personality than an ability to be on time.

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