I have a problem. I have battling with this problem most of my life. It’s embarrassing and inconvenient. I am hoping I can cure this bad habit, this awkward tendency. I need help.
My problem: I’m always on time.
This may not seem like a problem but it is. If I could add up all the time I have waited unnecessarily I probably could have written a symphony.
When I showed up at my producer’s house in Los Angeles recently, right at the appointed time, his response, answering the door with wet hair, quickly tucking his shirt into his pants, was “You’re always on time.” The next day, when I arrived at my father’s accountant’s office, exactly at the agreed upon 2:45, she responded “Are you always so punctual?” It’s just not sexy.
I have tried many tricks, like setting my watch behind, or circling around the block, but it never fails: I am always on time.
Here’s another example of how this trait recently got me into trouble: I was invited to a dinner party at an Upper West Side restaurant. My friend told the dozen or so guests the reservations was for 8:15. I was actually impressed with myself that I did not arrive one minute earlier than the designated time. But where was everybody? i was the only one there. I went to check in at the hostess station and they said “Oh, that reservation is for 8:30. Take a seat in the bar and when everyone is here come back and we’ll seat you.” When I asked my friend if she had changed the time she said “Oh, no, I just told everyone 8:15 to try to get them there by 8:30.”
You see my problem?
I have considered counseling and support groups, but ultimately I have decided to go cold turkey.
So if I am five minutes late for our rehearsal or meeting, you’ll understand it is part of my ongoing treatment.