How do you compromise with friends?

One of the challenges every week with my friends is what to do on Thursday nights.  In a group of 10 people, we tried a rotating dictator system.  Each person would take turns deciding what the group did.  This system was a failure when someone suggested something stupid like going to the gym for a painful workout.

Recently, we tried a voting points system.  You earn one point every time you show up.  If you show up three times in the past three weeks, you can earn a maximum of three points.  This system was also a failure.  Two of the guys (Alex and Kevin) realized if they combined their votes, they could use six points to bend the system to their favor.  At one point, Alex wanted to go cycling, while Kevin needed to build a fence.  They tried to vote for a hiatus, and I argued that you should lose a voting point for suggesting that we skip guy’s night out.  Alex and Kevin then voted for building a fence.  I argued that the spirit of guy’s night out was to have fun, not to torture each other.

During a bachelor party in Las Vegas, my friends complained that I abandoned the group multiple times.  During the day time, a bunch of guys wanted to gamble or shop.  Instead of gambling or shopping, I ventured off alone.  Instead, I visited the following: a dolphin habitat at the Mirage hotel, a shark reef at the Mandalay Bay hotel, the Bodies exhibition at the Luxor hotel, and the Titanic exhibition at the Luxor hotel.  I find it irritating to constantly compromise to make the group happy.  If I spend too much time with a group of people, I need some time alone to regain my sanity.  I need a few hours alone where I control my schedule 100 percent.  If I let my frustration build up too long, I might yell at someone because I’m sick of compromising what I want to do.

During University, my friend Ryan told me about how he got a 100 percent on a quiz.  Since I was struggling to avoid academic probation, I told Ryan that I hope he dies.  Ryan laughed, since his friend Phil said the same thing to him.  I’ve known Ryan long enough that I can be extremely blunt and he won’t get offended.

When I organize a lunch, it drives me crazy when someone replies “tentative”.  The answer is always to accept or decline.  All you have to do is check your calendar.  If your calendar is free, and you want to go, you click “accept”.  If you’re busy, or you don’t want to go, you click “decline”.  Ryan always clicks “tentative” to annoy me.

My friends also complain that I write e-mails like a robot.  If I asked you to have lunch, I’d write the e-mail as follows:


Hi Alan and Ryan,

Are you available for lunch as follows?

- Englebert

Ryan joked that I forgot to include the GPS coordinates in the e-mail above.

My psychologist asked me to name three of my closest friends, and what their profession was.  Ryan and Yeatland are engineers.  Kate has a Computer Science degree.  I tend to get along with engineers and Computer Science people because they’re very logical.  I get frustrated when I’m dealing with emotional people.  They always ask me questions that I think are unimportant, like how a movie or song makes me feel.  Emotions are subjective.  I prefer reliable facts. 


If you have any feedback, please send me an e-mail at