No introduction really needed after that title, right? It was during a recent conversation with my mom about a friend of mine who was so disappointed that she didn’t get a call back from someone who said he’d call later… and I told her… “sweetie, they just don’t always mean exactly that, when they say it”… and my mom, upon hearing me relay this to her, said… “clearly, this is your next blog topic!” So– thanks again, Mom!
Well, okay, I admit I may not get to 179 exactly. At least not without your help! But let’s just say that… in a roomful of women and men in the midst of dating world… it can be agreed upon completely that…. “I’ll call you later” does not mean any one thing! It’s funny, amusing, ridiculously silly, but… not necessarily tickling our funny bone when someone says those words and then… doesn’t. Soooo…. let’s take a look at some of the things they may actually mean when those infamous words are spoken. Ooookay, here we go…. (and thanks to my panel of consultants for some of the reponses below!)
1) The totally dire…..”I’ll call you later” … meaning…. don’t call me, I’ll call you… aka…. don’t hold your breath! Because… the phone call is actually never coming.
2) I’m in the middle of something right now and I really will get back to you when I can… or…. when I feel like it or… when I remember to… or…. well, ummm….. I will possibly call you later…. maybe….
3) This conversation is not going the way I wish it was and my mind is wandering to other topics (like the score on the Yankee game or who’s singing on American Idol…. and I wonder what’s in the fridge?) and even though I really am quite interested in you and the relationship, at THIS given moment there are other topics taking priority, so… I really and truly will call you…. at some point….later, when I can focus!
4) Stay with me for a sec, and you’ll get to the point of this next one. Once a boyfriend said those words to me… and forgot to call… we had a date that night and when I knew he was in the car and on his way to my house, 8 hours later- most of an entire Saturday– after he’d said that he’d call me back… I texted him. “So when you said you’d call me later, did you mean, after our date tonight when you are driving back home? Cuz…. I was just curious” and guess what– then he immediately called me, and I learned that not only did he think he’d call when he said those words, and intended to…but just got busy… it also didn’t mean a thing that he didn’t call later because… he still felt the same way about me and when the words came out, although I took them at face value, for him, they were just sort of… a way to get off the phone, and get stuff done… so he’d be free for our date later! So in this case it was sort of like saying, “see ya later”….
5) I’m not sure how I really feel about you or what I’m going to decide as far as going out again, soooo… I’m going to figure it out and since I can’t say all this to your face, I’m going to tell you I’ll call you later, and… depending upon the verdict… maybe I will!
6) I said later…. I didn’t say when!
7) My lips were moving but my mind was elsewhere….
I’ll call you later…. or maybe… hmmm….I’ll call that other cutie….
9) I so meant to call you. But then I lost your number. My cell phone died. My kids got sick. Joe got tickets to a hockey game at the last minute. Stuff… happens. But I so meant to call you….
10) I am busy slopping the pigs…. I’ll call you later! (no, please don’t!)
11) If I don’t fall asleep… go out with my friends… get stuck at work….or get otherwise distracted… I will call you later! And it’s always possible that later means… in a day, or 2 or… 3….
12)I’m just letting you know that this is a horrible time to talk but I answered the phone when I saw it was you, to let you know that I really do want to talk to you –but darling I’m in the middle of something important, and I really have to go, but I seriously will call you later!
13) Get away from me!
14) I can’t think of another way to end this conversation… so I’m just going to say I’ll call you later as a way to hang up! And whether I call you later is actually a 50-50 shot!
Are you getting the drift?
Okay, people…. your turn! We need 165 more things it means when he/she says they’ll call…. help me, here! And by the way… did you ever wonder what it REALLY means… when someone says, “take care”? (kidding… sort of….)