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Etiquette

Sorry I’m Not Sorry

Apologies take a lot of abuse these days. But they’re an essential part of how we trip our way through the modern world.

I say sorry, a lot. Most of my emails start with some variation on “sorry I haven’t written in X,” in which X is an amount of time that, until a decade or so ago, would have been a perfectly appropriate silence between contact. I apologize when my foot touches someone else’s foot on the subway—and sometimes, even, when someone else’s foot touches mine. It’s not quite a tic, but it’s not quite conscious, either.

Apparently, apologizing is something I need to apologize for. Sorry gets a lot of abuse these days. “Too many apologies could leave your career in a sorry state of affairs,” says Payscale.com. “The more times you say you’re sorry, the less it means; the less meaningful, the easier it is to say,” writes Businessweek. “Sorry is simply another way of downplaying our power, of softening what we do, to seem nice,” says Time.

Still, I’m not sorry.

There are different kinds of sorry.... Continue Reading

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Sep 29
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