Integrity now!

There are too many “Sorry I missed your birthday” cards. This bodes poorly for society. 

Since when did breaking commitments become acceptable social practice? The market for witty proxy apologies is booming.* Diligent and timely communication, thanks in part to cellphones and text messages, gives way to half-assed correspondence and lackadaisical relationship management. 

Enough, already!

For the sake of brevity, let’s get to it:

Gruen’s Rules of Integrity. 

  1. Rule: If you say you’re going to do something, do it… even if at great cost to you.
  2. Rule: If you must break Rule 1 for whatever reason, notify any relevant parties immediately.
    The broken commitment may be due to unforeseen circumstances or prohibitive cost– the reason is less important than the effort. People can sense insincerity.
  3. Rule: Make up broken commitments as soon as possible.
    Be extra sure not to break that one.
  4. Rule: Number 2 is the exception, not the rule.
    If you find yourself breaking commitments often, stop making commitments that you will likely break. Learn why you do this, and fix it.
  5. Rule: Being “flighty” is not an excuse.
    However, pragmatically, it is OK to break commitments with flighty people after they have personally demonstrated their flightiness to you. With these individuals, it’s OK to make other commitments provided you inform the third party of the situation. 
  6. Rule: Don’t overcommit. Say No.
    Committing to everyone means committing to no one. It’s OK to say ‘no’, or ‘no for now’. 
  7. Rule: Be Honest.
    Don’t lie. Though, there’s no obligation to speak the entire truth or offer information. 

Succinctly: Be Considerate.

More on this later. (And you can count on that.)


*Don’t believe me? Visit your local card store or pharmacy and take notice of “regret” cards.

Jews, Dating, and Digits

Jews need love too– but some sure do have a funny way of going about finding it.

In Times Square hangs a huge billboard advertising JDate, a jewish-only online dating service. It’s like, but for Jews.

Singles create profiles to describe themselves, their perfect date, and what they expect out of a relationship. They include pictures, yiddish phrases, and statistics including religious denomination and astrological sign to woo potential mates. Though users are asked for a user name, many men and women opt to use their unique serial numbers, a number assigned during signup, in lieu of a name to identify themselves.

Let’s read that again.

Though users are asked for a user name, many men and women opt to use their unique serial numbers, a number assigned during signup, in lieu of a name to identify themselves.

To boot, user numbers are unique, assigned, and permanent. You’d think for a cultural group so greatly affected by the holocaust, certain members would be more aware of the irony. 

At least you can change your phone number.

Notes: The author identifies culturally as Jewish. The author is not on JDate. Friends of the author, over dinner, noted that it was hard to remember girls that used JDate-assigned numbers instead of user names. The author remarked how funny that seemed in historical contexts. Laughter ensued. Promises were made to produce a blog post. The author makes no apology.

More: Spark Networks (LOV), the parent company of JDate, uses the same technology for other niche dating sites such as aptly-named Interracial SinglesBig Beautiful Woman Personals Plus, and Indian Matrimonial Network. These names are so wonderfully descriptive.