Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Some Questions For You

First, I read a post here and found the situation in number 3 to be quite interesting.

"Once a woman came into a restaurant where I worked and had dinner all by herself. At the end of her meal, she asked the waiter to put a birthday candle on her dessert. Fifteen years later, I still feel really sad about it."

Do you feel sad for her? My first reaction was that she probably had another birthday celebration some other time, but this was her own little indulgence. Wherever Mr. Lebovitz worked was probably a pretty nice place. She may have saved her money for a month to treat herself. What is your reaction?

I was going to leave a comment on his blog, but I decided not to because I've never received any sort of feedback or acknowledgement from my comments there, so I figured I'd open it up here. This brings my next question. Is it proper blogetiquette to respond to some people's comments and not others? Is there even an etiquette to blogging? Does it not matter, because on our own blogs we can do whatever we want?

Maybe I'm overly sensitive. I know that I can be sometimes. There are some blogs that I've visited in the past where they responded to everyone's comments but mine, so I just stopped visiting. I figured they didn't want me there. And it's different if they just don't comment on their blogs, but send an email or visit me here. That is some acknowledgment that they like me visiting. Maybe they didn't like my comments. I don't know. Some blogs I still visit, but I just stopped commenting, because what's the point? What do you think?

And if any of you are reading who haven't commented before, please feel free to show yourself! I will acknowledge you!

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Margie said...

Hi Anali

I cannot imagine it....someone not responding to a comment you made on their blog, while responding to others that commented.
To me that is rude!
I do remember a while back going to a blog and I left a comment, and the blogger did not respond to my comment....I did not go back to his blog...

Thanks for your visit today.
Jake is cute, huh?
We all love him!
Do you have a dog?
Take care....hope all is well with you Anali.

Lotus Reads said...

Hi, Anali!

I think, when it comes to responding to comments, one should either respond to everyone's comments or none at all. I usually go with the first...I love "chatting" with people who visit me.

About the lonely celebrant...perhaps she was travelling and had no choice but to celebrate by herself? Atleast that is what I am hoping!

Nice post.

Sanjay said...

I respond to everyone's comment. Its proper etiquette and I think you are right about it.

karrie said...

I cherish solitude so I might have looked at that women's night out as a treat too. It really could go either way.

My thought on responding to comments is that I try and acknowledge everyone who reads some of the time--maybe by replying t a comment, but more often by visiting their blog or linking if they;re a new visitor.

I think my comment section often turns into a discussion between readers, so I don't really moderate it and only sometimes chime in.

I never considered that I might be making someone feel unwelcome though. Hmmm.

Asha said...

I think you if you like a candle on your cake on your birthday,why not get one for yourself?!These days people are so impersonal,she might not have anybody to celebrate with her,so she got one for herself.Good for her.Why this guy is feeling sorry for her all these years!Waste of his time(the waiter I mean).

Anali,you know I love you!!:)
Well..either you reply to everybody or not at all unless they have questions about your post.Not answering one is rude while you say hi to everybody else.
I have to reply 100 odd people and comment as well,thank God I stay home!!;P
You are sensitive!! Toughen up girl!;D

DJ Black Adam said...

It makes me feel sad :-(

I don't think she would have asked if she had been acknowledged somewhere else.

Nina said...

When I was in college I had no choice but to have a meal alone in a resturaunt sometimes. At first I found it to be uncomfortable. Over time I found it to be enjoyable. And now I find it to be a treat that I don't often get a chance to experience. Don't feel sad.

I think that it's rude when I leave a comment and get no response from the blogger. It's happened to me before and I felt like the kid no one wanted on their team :( I'm a new blogger and I repspond to everyone that leaves a comment in the hopes that it is the polite thing to do so they'll come back!

Suldog said...

Insofar as the birthday candle is concerned, perhaps she had another idea? Maybe it was a subtle come-on to the waiter, with her hoping he might engage her in conversation. Probably not the case, but maybe?

As for replying to blog comments:

I try to reply to everyone, if I reply to any single commenter. That does seem the nice thing to do. I truly appreciate it whenever anybody leaves a comment. That they've taken the time from their day to acknowledge my words is so nice!

Having said that, though, I'd be dishonest if I said I followed through on the above every time. I have marvelously good intentions, but I sometimes fall short of the goal.

I usually visit those people who leave a comment. If they've been nice enough to put up a link to my place, I always reciprocate.

The exception to the above, about commenting, is when someone leaves a comment on an old post. I may reply or I may not. I assume that the person leaving the comment realizes that the post is not new, so I hope they'll cut me slack.

Geez! This is about the longest comment I've ever left anywhere! Sorry!

Lisa Francisco said...


I don't usually comment back on my blog when people leave comments. I actually go the bloggers site and make a comment, sometimes in response to their actual comment on my blog or me commenting on their blog. I do that purposefully, cuz i think people would like to see the number of comments on their blog raise up versus the number of comments rising on their own blog mostly due to they responding themselves to each comment....Did you get that? I think that was confusing... :)


P.S. the new name will be revealed this afternoon!

Nance said...

anali--I think many people's first reaction is empathetic: how would they feel in that situation. I know I would feel sad if I were alone on my birthday. So, my reaction was "how sad!"

As far as the blog commenting, I try to respond to everyone's comments on my blog, and I can because my blog is not all that heavily commented. I can have that luxury, and by nature, I am naturally chatty and like to engage with my readers. Maybe it's because I'm a teacher. I also like to encourage new visitors/commentors, so I immediately welcome them, or try to. But for some bloggers, it might be more than they are willing to invest. If I like what I read on the blog, I keep going back and just forget commenting.

Cacophoenix said...

The lady probably just wanted to eat her cake alone. I get a little possessive about my icecreams. It is indedd a treat these days to cherish anything alone. But just the picture of that lady sitting htere churns people's imagination. I love listening to how ppl think. I think it is proper etiquette to respond. It is like speaking If I told you good job, or whatever I expect you to say something back. That was rude.
Oh came here from Sanjay's blog. Nice blog you have here. Am enjoying it.

BipolarLawyerCook said...

Anali, I agree that blogging's a social activity, and prey to the same social sensitivities and insensitivities that high school brought. I do think it's polite to visit back, and comment back most of the time, and I think the failure to do so reveals more about the blogger than their posts, which can be edited ad infinitum. Situations that call for spontaneous responses, however-- that's a better test.

suttonhoo said...

interesting. I'm probably guilty of this, because I'm not always sure that folks come back to check their previous comments -- not in a careless way, but just because that's the nature of blogging and the web -- always moving, always changing. I try to comment on comments that are more question like -- but will frequently leave open ended statements alone -- it's like giving the person who commented the last word, which I guess makes more sense if they can see you smiling and nodding -- less sense when they can't, online.

it is true that I'm better at replying to comments on my Flickr account, but that's because Flickr aggregates all comments within in one window, so it's a heck of a lot easier to scan and reply where it's relevant.

I'll be more conscientious about this moving forward -- thanks for bringing it up. :)

Anali said...

margie - It seemed rude to me too.

Jake is adorable and I'm looking forward to more pictures! I don't have a dog, but there certainly are some cuties out there!

lotus reads - I love "chatting" on blogs too! It's nice to see both sides of the conversation and I always look forward to getting a response to my comments!

sanjay - That's one of the many things that I like about your blog!

karrie - I noticed that you linked to me soon after I started visiting. That was really nice and is the ultimate blog affirmation! : )

asha - I agree that sometimes you just have to do what you want for yourself! I wonder if this mystery lady has any idea all the controversy she has stirred up??!!

And Asha you are such a sweetie and certainly have the whole comment thing down! Well, you know how I feel about you! Let me stop gushing! : )

dj black adam - It could go either way, so it's possible that was her one party. That would be very sad, but at least she had a great meal even if it was by herself. It is nice to see people's compassion for her.

Anali said...

nina - Welcome and thanks for stopping by! It can be a great treat, but I do admit to having a book with me when I've done it.

suldog - Great minds think alike! I started thinking that she might have been flirting with him too! I don't know about this instance, but I could see where it could work in some situations.

I have noticed the same thing about old comments. A few times I've checked my sitemeter and noticed that there were recent comments on really old posts. I go back and answer the comments, but I might not have caught them all. And I love long comments! See? : )

lisa francisco - I get it! : ) I think that's good too. It's nice to get new visitors and I love having a conversation where we are reacting to all of the comments and get a real discussion happening.

And I like the new name too! The only thing is that you are making equally good cases for both names! It's going to be a hard choice. : )

nance - It is nice that people are empathetic. It certainly is lacking in this world sometimes. I've noticed that the discussions are really picking up at The Dept.!

cacophoenix - Welcome and thanks for the comment! Great name by the way.

Yes, she did have her cake and eat it too! And funny about the ice cream. She didn't have to share! LOL!

Thanks for the kind words and I hope you come back! I'll check out your blog today and I'll be seeing you on Sanjay's blog too!

bipolarlawyercook - I was thinking the same thing about high school and middle school even!!! The blogging thing can make you feel like a little kid again. I guess all new experiences do that. On my first day of law school, I felt like I was in kindergarden, not even high school.

I admit to finally feeling like I was fitting in to the blogosphere when I started getting tagged.

suttonhoo - And you were the one who first tagged me, so thank you! I do always come back and check my comments. It's such a treat to get a response!

Jac said...

I never forget to check the replies to my comments with out fail.

I don’t like people who generally don't respond to my comments but I have a few who don't respond to comments but regularly visit my blog...I can understand that.

amisha said...

hi anali,
that post + the comments there were interesting... i am like you, i did not assume that this woman was pitiful or needed a waiter to feel sorry for her... in this sense i think that the pity was condescending (so often a component of pity, isn't it?). i would not make assumptions about someone celebrating their birthday alone. in fact, my tendency would be to say, good for you! have some nice quiet time to yourself and enjoy it!
regarding the comment issue, i try very hard to respond to all comments via email... sometimes i do not have all the time that i would like but i try! i tend to not respond individually to comments with people that i regularly correspond with. to leave comments and never be acknowledged, though, is not a good feeling and i tend to stop commenting on those blogs (even if i keep reading them).

Anali said...

jac - It's so nice to see that you're back! I LOVE that you always answer your comments! Such a nice cousin. ; )

amisha - It's pretty amazing all the assumptions that we make about other people just based on one small thing. I guess we all do it to a certain extent. It makes me want to step back a bit from my own assumptions about things too.

I LOVE how you send such nice emails after I make a comment. They are always very thoughtful and much appreciated!

Tsiporah said...

Hello, Just found your blog today and wanted to say that I would feel sad for the lady too. I didn't want to just read and not comment since your pretty much left an open invitation. Have a great day!

Mosilager said...

I think it's perfectly fine to have a date by oneself. I think it takes a lot of guts to go out and celebrate by yourself. She may have been new in the city - I was in one place for a few days before my 21st birthday hit. By then I had about 10 people I knew who showed up for the party so still had a good time :)

I try to respond to all of my commenters. If I can't think of anything good to say I definitely go to their blogs and comment. I missed a couple of 1-time commentors once when I switched to the beta - their names changed to 'anonymous' and I had no idea if they had blogs or not.

If people get a lot of comments maybe they accidentally left you out? I think that happened to me once - I forgot to respond to someone (but I came back and did it later).

lisa said...

I admit I have never even thought about whether comments require responses. How incredibly rude not to consider this like any other social intercourse. And I am so sorry to have neglected to respond to your many very welcome, very thoughtful comments on my blog. I always SO look forward to hearing anything you have to say. My bad, as Jackson would put it.

As for the story about the birthday, I think it's very sad. That's an egocentric reaction, I know, and I'm sure she's so mentally healthy and self-sufficient that she doesn't need scores of friends or a sister or an adoring lover to let her know she's welcome and wanted in this world on this one specific day. But that would not be me. I'd be teary and self-pitying in that oh-so-attractive way.

plez... said...

Re: comments on my blog.
If the comment is a question directed at me or a debateable comment, I will always respond. Sometimes the comment is in complete agreement with what I have posted and I would like to comment, but a response would seem redundant and I'm not sure what to say.

But if the person visits my blog alot or I really dig their blog (like this one! *smile*), I will always add them to my Blog Roll (which I'm about to do with Anali's First Amendment)!

And please don't hesitate to visit plezWorld.

Anali said...

tsiporah - Welcome! Thanks for stopping by and taking me up on the invitation and you have a great day too!

mosilager - I'm sure you have a great time wherever you are! I really appreciate that you comment to everyone.

Some of the places that I'm thinking about didn't have many comments and it seemed kind of obvious after a while. I tried and then just moved on.

lisa - Not to worry! You made my day when one of your predictions for the year was that I'd write a a cookbook with all my adapted recipes! : )

plez - Welcome! You are so sweet and thank you for the link! I will definitely drop by and visit your blog! ; )

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