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Oct 04th
Home Columns Unsolicited Advice Why Some Filipinos Do Not Honor RSVP Requests (And a Great Lesson from the Jose-Rostie Wedding)
Why Some Filipinos Do Not Honor RSVP Requests (And a Great Lesson from the Jose-Rostie Wedding) PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - Unsolicited Advice
Written by Bobby M. Reyes   
Thursday, 29 July 2010 11:07


Why Some Filipinos Do Not Honor RSVP Requests (And a Great Lesson from the Jose-Rostie Wedding)


More-than two-hundred (wedding) invitations were sent out. The deadline for receiving the RSVP's was on the 17th of this month. All responded, EXCEPT my brothers and sisters. I thought and thought about it. I asked myself several times, ‘why?’—Jesse Jose



T hus Jesse Jose, our columnist with his in-your-face confrontational style, dealt with the failure of his siblings to send back the self-addressed-stamped envelopes (SASE) as their RSVPs to the wedding invitations sent by his daughter-in-law to be. If you have not read Ka Jesse’s outburst, please click on this link:

A Wedding and an Open Letter to my Siblings


And if you want to revisit Jesse Jose’s 133 (and counting) commentaries, please visit his column at this URL:


There is a joke that former President Erap taught Rep. Manny Pacquiao that RSVP means “Return to Sender Very Promptly.”


At least former President Joseph Ejercito Estrada understands what RSVP means.  Now, even Congressman Pacquiao probably knows that it is the acronym of "Répondez s'il vous plaît", a formal French phrase that means "Please Reply."


So, how come some, if not quite a few, Filipinos do not honor RSVP requests – even among Overseas Filipinos? Perhaps because many Filipinos do not speak French and they cannot understand "Répondez s'il vous plaît"?


H ere is the final retort of Jesse Jose, as he closes the matter with his siblings: Mr. Jose writes:


“How much time is involved in responding to Jaclyn's invitation and in sending back that RSVP to her?  All you guys had to do was to check the RSVP either yes or no, seal the envelope and drop it in a mailbox.  May selyo na rin yung envelope.  Mahirap bang gawin yun?  Matagal bang gawin yan?  Will that take you a long time to do that?  Check it yes or no, seal it and mail it!  That's it!  How much time is involved there?  How much time will that take away from your so VERY BUSY schedule?


“Your excuses are so flimsy!  Bising-bisi KAYONG LAHAT to be able to do that? 


“At saka, ano naman excuse ni Kirsten from preventing her in sending back the RSVP?  So VERY BUSY din baKawawa naman kayo?  Bising-bisi kayong lahat!  Over two-hundred invitations to this Jose-Rostie wedding were sent out, but only the JOSE family members were so goddamn BUSY to mail out the RSVP.  Ano ang ibig sabihin niyan? 


“AGAIN, the steps in sending back that RSVP: Check it YES or NO!  Seal the envelope!  And drop it in a mailbox!  Ilang oras mo gagawin yan?  Matagal bang gawin yan?


“Kulang kayo sa urbanidad!  Mga bastos kayo!  Pati yung invitation ni Maribel sa reception dito sa Auburn, hindi ninyo rin sinagot.  Once again, all you had (to do) was to check it – reject or accept – and to send back the RSVP.  May selyo na rin yung card.  Hindi ninyo rin ginawa yan!


“Not anyone of you even bothered to send out a note of congratulations to Chris and Jaclyn.  Ni isa sa inyo, WALA!  Anong klase kayong mga kapatid? . . . (snipped)


“Kuya Jesse”


A ctually Jesse Jose is doing a great service to the Filipino-American community and the Filipino people in general. By going ballistics over the failure of his siblings to send back the RSVP card contained in their respective SASEs, Mr. Jose is perhaps the first Filipino writer cum community leader to come forward and confront in the open a bad habit among some of our people.


It is a fact that very-few Filipino-American writers and journalists reply to the RSVP invitation from the Philippine Consulate General in Los Angeles, California, for functions and/or press conferences held at its premises.


Here is another instance . . . When our group held the First Media Breakfast Club-Dean Jose Reyes Award for Journalistic Excellence and Literary Distinction on Nov. 30, 2001, quite a few individuals never bothered to honor our RSVP request sent along with the invitation. (But the event went A-OK, as we served more-than 440 dinners at the Sheraton Gateway Hotel at the LAX for the said event.)


I remember also the recent golden-wedding anniversary and reception for Dr. and Dra. Jose Baldonado, the much-respected former First Couple of the Filipino-American Community of Los Angeles (FACLA). My wife and I were some of the few former FACLA officers that attended the church ceremonies. At the huge reception – where many community leaders were present – I looked especially for a nephew of Dra. Caridad Baldonado, since he is an elected public official in a Southern-California city. But the nephew and his wife were not there. Later I learned that the Baldonado Family sent him an invitation but the nephew never bothered to mail back the SASE. And yes, I learned likewise that several individuals invited by the Baldonado Couple never also bothered to comply with the RSVP request. And worse, some invited guests who did send back the SASE—and confirmed their attendance—did not show up at the church or at the hotel where the reception was held.


The Baldonado experience reinforced my observation that “RSVP Sent But . . .” is worse than not even replying to an RSVP request.


During the wedding of my son, six fellow directors of my wife in a Filipino-American association sent back promptly the RSVP card. They confirmed that they would attend with their respective spouses at least the reception. But . . . they failed to come. This meant that 12 seats were empty and unoccupied and the reception tab for them came at $1,200 (@ $100 per head). So in jest, I told my wife that someday I would not even invite them to my funeral. # # #


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Last Updated on Thursday, 29 July 2010 11:54
Comments (3)
Kuya Jesse,

I read Bobby's article. I was very suprised by this fact in the Filipino community. Reason being is that Tara is very adamant that we return any RSVP, regardless whether we are going or not; it is just a courtesy. Wow! Who would've thought? I can know understand your frustration and the reason you are not happy with your siblings. Didn't realize that many Filipinos do not honor RSVP requests. How sad.


Life is short. Forgive quickly. Kiss slowly. Love truly. Laugh uncontrollably, and never regret anything that made you smile.
2 Friday, 30 July 2010 15:51
LOLO Bobby,

This is getting laughable na. And distasteful. But here's my reply to my sister, Raquel's letter. Akala ko tapos na boksing.... Last na 'to. Please don't publish anymore letters from my siblings. Their excuses are getting repetitive. Kung ano yung sinabi ng isa, inulit din noon isa. Chochowa-chochowa na ang nangyayari dito. Bisi kami, bisi kami, para mag-RSVP!

Pero ngayon, hindi na sila bisi. Na-diario kasi ang mga kabastusan nila at kakulangan nila ng urbanidad. Kaya ngayon, masisipag ng magsisagot.

Kaya, let's end the saga here with my letter to Raquel. Pinagtatawan na lang sila ng mga readers sa mga flimsy excuses nila. The Jose family is beginning to look lilke a bunch of laughable idiots na.

Okey nagrud, thanks...

3 Monday, 02 August 2010 06:54
"The Jose family is beginning to look lilke a bunch of laughable idiots na. "
That is the picture and too bad painted by its own blood!!! Truly laughable and distasteful. We are not guilty of flimsy excuses and most of all we are not idiots. NOT ACCEPTABLE!!!!
Margaret de Jesus

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