How to not make friends and not influence anybody.

My wife’s brother’s wife is a [insert offensive name for the female anatomy]. I hate her.  Never liked her.  She and I are in similar business, so I called and asked if she could introduce me to her boss.  She said she would talk to him about it. Days went by and she didn’t get back to me.  I sent her an email that said, “Maybe you could just give me his name, and I will go about it myself by sending him an email.”

She wrote back saying that her boss said “No [insert f-bomb] way do i want to talk to anyone.”  Professional people do not say this about someone that they do not know.  He does not know me at all, has never heard of me, and has no reason to think ill of me.  That said:

1.  I don’t believe she spoke to him.
2.  If she did, I am completely sure she didn’t do my story justice at all because she is mildly [insert offensive name for developmentally disabled people].

So I asked again if I could just get his name and I would find a way to just call him myself.  She wrote back that she is completely uncomfortable with that because she knows her boss hates solicitation.   Of course, I could get the name off the company website, but she said that she would help… how would I know she would go psycho.

So I replied, “Thanks.  I will remember this when you ask me for something.” Now of course, everyone in the family is mad at me. They know she is a fruitcake, but think I should massage her to keep the peace.  I am tired of being the peace keeper.  If someone is an asshole, can’t I just say, “You are an asshole?” Seriously, do I have to be nice to someone who is going out of the way to be an asshole?  My wife says to be nice because she’s family.

You asked a favor of someone you hate, and have never liked. Based on your sweet letter, I’m sure you’re a wonderful person, but my excellent intuition tells me she’s not such a fan of yours, either.

She skirted around doing the favor and tried, gracefully, to not do it for you, but you kept asking. This made her feel (if she is lying) like she had to keep making up excuses. Finally, she just said no, and then, wait…who went psycho?

That brings us to your next question…no, you don’t have to be nice to someone who is going out of their way to be unpleasant. But for whatever reason, your sister-in-law was trying.

And your wife is right. Especially because it’s her family, not yours. Terrorize your own family all you want, but try to make things easier for your poor wife.

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