Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Let's Break This Deal...

Deal breakers. Those absolutely unacceptable traits, habits, or behaviors that make other people repulsive to us. For me it's a pretty bright line, and no amount of humor, good looks or intelligence can excuse them. I tolerate a lot of things in close friends; smoking, swearing, heavy drinking, obsessive behavior, nail biting, even nose picking. I'd be a hypocrite to disapprove of someone for doing something that I've once done or would consider doing. But I just cannot over look the following:

1) Listening to AM Talk radio (not sports talk shows or Paul Harvey, I mean the political ones, like Rush and the gang). I have to keep anyone who garners their "information" from this source at arm's length. I have friends who are conservative, but the rabid hate-mongers? Forget it.

2) Vandalism. Anyone who deliberately destroys another person's property--pumpkin smashers, snowman smashers, mailbox bashers. I will only reconsider a candidate for friend if the act was long ago and they show appropriate remorse. Otherwise? See ya. (So yes, I'd be friends with Earl Hickey.)

3) Cheating. I don't care if you cheat at cards, at your taxes or on your spouse. If a person compromises their integrity in little things, they probably do it in big things too. I know a guy who cheats at golf. He also cheats on his wife and stole from his employer. I don't think it was a coincidence. The golf score was a red flag and anyone should have seen the rest coming.

4) Rude treatment of anyone in the service sector. A dolt who barks at waitresses, won't say "please" and "thank you" to retail clerks, or dismisses receptionists isn't a nice person. I don't want to be friends with anyone who isn't nice. I subscribe to Plato's belief that "The measure of a man is what he does with power." This applies to women, too.

5) Littering. Seriously. What kind of moron even does this when 20-gallon trash barrels are sitting by every gas pump, fast food restaurant and mall entrance? This level of disregard for our planet is reprehensible. I can look past driving an SUV or drinking bottled water or shopping at Walmart or conspicuous consumerism (it's not easy--and not all four, but given enough redeeming attributes I can do it). I can force back my bile at the person who leaves a carbon footprint the size of Lake Superior if I think that they don't know any better. Even a little kid knows that littering is wrong. If you want my friendship,

What are your deal breakers? What might keep an otherwise perfectly decent candidate for friend at bay?


  1. Your list is a great one. I'm pretty sure I couldn't be friends with anyone that drives a Hummer.

  2. Great list - that littering thing makes me CRAZY, and people DO it.

    BTW, do I have your email address?
    I can't find it...

  3. My deal breaker is someone who cannot see an event/incident from someone else's perspective. I had a friend once who could only see her side of the coin.

  4. Amen sister! Too all of those things. Especially the littering. And Jenn's Hummer comment.

    The only addition I can think of for now would be those who deliberately take up more than one parking space and/or park illegally in a handicapped spot.

    And if you did either of those things in a Hummer, well, you just don't want to know what I think... :)

  5. Hmmm. I had a friend who was a great friend. She cheated on her husband, and it was a long story of course. At the time, I was having a marital crisis and knew I couldn't deal with my friend. So just when she needed me most, I called her and told her I couldn't be there for her. (her hubby was my husband's cousin!) I dumped her. Four years later, we became tentatively friendly, and forgave one another. Now, I consider her one of my dearest friends, faults and all, and I know she feels the same about me. I am so glad we gave it a chance, in spite of the deal-breakers! I am happily married still, and my friend is happily with her "other guy".

  6. OOH I read your list and then thought of a zillion others - now I'm left thinking that I'm terribly intolerant!

    Maybe I'll do a room 101 post!
    absent parents
    control freaks
    people with food fad diets...
    stop, DC stop...this list could run and run!

  7. It's the rudeness thing for me, all the way. Can't abide it, and I'm truly convinced it's a Tip of the Iceberg thingey--these sluts are the same ones who kick puppies and shake crying babies--ugh~

    Congrats to Mr. T big time!

  8. I'm with you on all these -- #4 is a particular hot button for me.

  9. A "George Bush--4 More Years" bumper sticker. Maybe if it was obvious they had tried to scrape it off, they might have a shot.

    There's no reason to be rude to people in the service industry. Or to litter. I'd have to say something for sure.

  10. I'm a Scorpio I can forgive ANYTHING..I just can't forget it...ever.

  11. Good list!

    I once laid on the horn sooooooo bad for a car in front of me. My husband was totally embarrased. They opened the passenger door, put a disposable cup on the street, and then drove off. I was soooooo mad!


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