Dear Blake,

We are part of a group of four couples who arrange to get together for dinners. One of the couples continually invites another couple at the last minute without checking with the rest of us. We are hosting a dinner and planned it around the eight of us, only to find out this couple has invited another couple — again! I explained to the woman that I don’t think it’s nice to invite additional people without first checking with the hosts, certainly not at 10 o’clock the night before, but they don’t want to leave the fifth couple out. This is the third time this has happened, and others have spoken to her about it to no avail. Please help!

Signed, Jeanette
From Austin, Texas

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Dear Jeanette,

What that couple is doing is rude and disrespectful. Anything you and the members can do to stop her is acceptable to me… including running them out of town. Anyway, here are some of my ideas. When the new couple arrives, snub them, bigtime. And go as far as whispering to the other couples, while point at the new couple, while laughing. Or, you can say some very over the top shocking comments about the latest couple, and tell them your source regarding the statement came from the couple that extended the invitation. This idea might work. Be very critical of their career choice, no matter what it is. Such as if they are teachers, accuse them of creating future criminals alleging that schools no have discipline. If one of them is a cop, ask them if they take bribes exclusively in cash, or do they also accept credit cards. But if you want to do the neighborly thing, welcome the new arrivals with open arms, and try to find some common ground. And if you eventually start to like them and establish a sold friendship, kick the people out of the group that first invited them, which will also serve as a warning for the most recent addition not to ever pull any stupid crap like that. I hope this helps.

Blake

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