My moral failing.

Elena Tucker
4 min readMay 30, 2023
Photo by CAPITOL STANDARD on Unsplash

I was in the midst of fighting a valiant fight against being late, occasionally winning, sometimes losing, when I chanced upon an article in the London Times. The article called out being late as a “moral failing.” (“Being late isn’t just rude — it’s a moral failing” by Charlotte Ivers, May 7, 2023, The Sunday Times)

A part of me, the part that tried to justify something that should not nor could be justified, cried foul. “Hey! It’s not right. It’s just one woman’s opinion,” I even said to myself out loud. But in my heart of hearts and bone marrow of bone marrows, I knew she was correct. Being late isn’t just a rotten thing to do, it’s a wrong thing to do.

Confession: I used to see a psychiatrist whose feelings I used to hurt when I would show up late for our appointments. I was not horribly late (justifying my actions here, but I would sometime be about 5 to 7 minutes late for these 50 minute sessions), but he would get huffy. Like, his feelings were genuinely hurt, as if we were close friends and it was personal. It is true that he was not a great psychiatrist — I knew waaaaay too much about his personal life and his political views and his inner thoughts, but it was never personal. It was also true that I would call to say I was running late. I still always call people waiting on me to say I am running late. And if they are a doctor, instructor, hairdresser, or any other professional…

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Elena Tucker

Writer and storyteller, immigrant, wife, mom, knitter, collector of jokes, lover of cheap, sweet wine.