Wednesday, August 24, 2011

All Appallogies

You can't misspell the word appallogies without the word appall and there is good reason for it. I highly doubt (notice I left a slight window for error here) that any apology ever made in the history of personkind has been sincere. 

First, allow me to clarify. An apology isn't the programmed and direct response you would have when accidentally bumping into a stranger on the street. An apology doesn't occur when you math skills momentarily escape you at a drive thorough window and you short the burger serving technician a quarter. A "real" apology only occurs after you have willfully chosen to say something or participate in an act that you later come to regret. These apologies however are not sincere because we never truly feel regretful of the act. We feel bad that we got caught yes. We feel bad because the person or person(s) we hurt make us feel guilty yes. However, there is no one thing that while we are in the act of doing it do we think of how sorry we will be for doing it. 

How often do we carefully craft a peanut butter and jam sandwich just to throw it in the trash? Was there not a conscious choice to make and eat the sandwich? How often do we speed somewhere in the hope that a cop will pull us over and give us the opportunity to try and apologize our way out of a ticket? Rarely.

If anything, apologies are more often used as devices to escape arguments, scrutiny, lectures or anything else that a truly sorry person would embrace if they actually felt that they had wronged someone. Below I have compiled a list of a few tactical ways of apologizing in order to do anything but reveal remorse. 

The Man Apology: I'm sorry because you are mad.

The Over Apologizer: They apologize about everything almost once per sentence/4 times a paragraph. The over apologizer blurs the lines between reality and apology until you can no longer discern one from the other. The OA apologizes with the same quickness and conviction regardless if they are apologizing about using the last cup of milk or if they killed your parents. The aim of the over apologizer is to make everything seem meaningless.

The Hostile Apologizer/The Thinly veiled Hostile Apologizer: The hostile apologizer apologizes in a threatening way. They may combine the words "I'm sorry" with "What was I supposed to do?" The tactical purpose of this apology is to threaten the other person into accepting their apology through intimidation. The Hostile apologizer is often seen hanging around the Italian community. 

The Thinly Veiled Hostile Apologizer: more common among the female community and often found at retail stores. They are marked by their crazy eyes with an otherwise stoic face. Often they will be heard using the expression: "Well, I'm sorry that you feel that way." Loosely translated it means "Get the F&%K out of my store.

The Avoiding Judgement Apologizer: "I'm sorry but the meatloaf might be bad tonight. I ran out of several important ingredients chief among them, meat."

The Reduced Sentence Apologizer: "I'm sorry I killed your entire family and ate their corpses but if possible I'd like to be paroled in 10-15 years. Kthanks buh."

The Excuse To Say Something Horrible a.k.a The Simon Cowell Apologizer: Self explanatory.

The Manipologizer: The Manipologizer only apologizes for something that they did in the past when they want you to do something for them right now. Sadly, the thing that they want you to do "right now" is the very thing that they will be apologizing for the next time that they want you to do something "right now." 

Unless the next apology you hear starts with the phrase: "I'm an asshole, you caught me and I hope you still love me enough not to kick me out of the house" chances are that person is tactically apologizing. All apologies are appalling manipulations employed to trick you out of making logical decisions about an individual's behavior. 


  1. Loved it! I'm sorry, but I really would like to pass this link on to my next blog post. I apologize in advance if I do, however post before you say ya or nay...but to make up for that, you will have full credit and direct linkage back :D

  2. I'm delighted to have anyone share my content. I'm not important enough to worry about losing money on it or anything. I'm just glad you liked it.

  3. I've thought of these "appallogies," often. I'm glad you could put it into words way better than I ever could..

  4. Well, it is "all about you"
    (hence narcissism

  5. oh god, i'm so sorry. oops! i mean, i'm...not...sorry?

    great post!

  6. Thankyou Drone, a cracking piece of work yet again.

    This is the sort of post a certain Elton John should read...(geddit? - no? never mind)

  7. Great post! I was raised by "Norwegian-American-Lutheran" parents from Minnesota (as Garrison Keillor says: "Where the introverts look at their shoes and the extroverts look at your shoes"), so I come from a long line of 'over-apologizers'. Heck, we apologize when other people are in the wrong... :)

  8. I think this post--especially the beginning--harkens back to the etymological meaning of apology, which is "a defense." And as you pointed out in a roundabout way, most "apologies" are a self-centered defense of one's actions, rather than genuine contrition or remorse.

    P.S. - I may be a borderline O.A. (but usually only with my wife, and only over trivial things)

  9. lol! i've never analyzed apologies

  10. Awesome writing! And great images to go with it. Kudos.

  11. I'm sorry.. I just had to comment ;)
    Thanks for clarifying apologizes! A good way to raise self-awareness... I now know I am the Avoid Judgement Apologizer! ROFL

  12. I'm sorry I haven't stalked your blob lately.........

  13. Your blog is a gold mine.
    I must appallogize for my seemingly stalker status.
    Truly, thankfully, sorry.