It has always been generally acceptable in high society circles to arrive fashionably late.
Most of us don’t have the luxury of living in high society.
But there’s arriving late to make a stylish entrance to the party, then there’s turning up on the doorstep when everyone else is already home in bed wondering what on earth you have been up to.
Statements issued at 1.33am are not a good look for those we have placed in power.
At the start of November Northern Ireland watched and waited as Stormont dithered, unable to agree a new raft of circuit breaker lockdown measures. There was chaos, there was confusion.
All the business community, the shops, the people who wanted the chance to visit a relative they hadn’t seen in months wanted was an answer.
Despite having weeks to prepare and fielding warnings from health and scientific experts, a cobbled together last gasp compromise was reached.
We were told lessons would be learned, it would not happen again.
The students were not paying attention in class. Either that or they enjoyed the experience so much the wanted to give it another go.
There must be an inexhaustible supply of candles on the hill. This week again we have all sat and watched and waited as the burning of the midnight oil resumed for three consecutive nights. The beds or our politicians must have been burning.
Perhaps they have a perception that by working into the wee small hours they can fool us all into thinking ‘my gosh, aren’t they all working so hard. Fair play to ‘em.’
But you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.
Yes, there are serious issues to discuss, issues that affect every single one of us. But is it really acceptable for politicians to be tweeting on a Monday evening asking for the Executive to have an emergency meeting at 9pm that night. And it’s been three nights in a row now, Saturday, Sunday, Monday.
If you have to have three emergency meetings in such a short space of time, questions must be asked on what happened at the first one, then the second one...?
What’s wrong with a meeting in daylight hours? Getting an early start to the day? A timely press conference in mid afternoon? We’d even settle for the evening so we all know exactly where we stand, if such a thing can ever be achieved.
Across the channel. If we’re still allowed to go there, Boris Johnson may have his critics. But at 4pm there’s the UK government, like them or not, up front and centre.
In the Republic of Ireland the three wise men of Taoiseach Micheal Martin will meet with Tánaiste Leo Varadkar and Green Party leader Eamon Ryan bring the gift of a lunchtime press conference. Details can be digested throughout the afternoon.
Sadly it all smacks of desperation, a Stormont executive swimming out of its depth, floundering, drowning, unsure of where to turn next.
In an efficient business all should seem calm and orderly in public. Think of a duck gracefully gliding across a pond. Underneath the little legs would be working away feverishly. We, the public, should not see those little legs.
While not quite a dead duck yet, our pitiful Stormont duck is upside down, legs flapping about in different directions, splashing water everywhere. And the duck is going nowhere fast.
Round and round it goes in ever decreasing circles. Were it a real duck someone, somewhere, would find the compassion to out it out of its misery.
It’s a real Christmas quacker of a situation, but no-one is finding the joke inside that funny.
Social media users were quick of the mark on Monday night to point out when Sinn Fein leaders Mary Lou McDonald and Michelle O'Neill issued identical tweets prior to the Executive's meeting over travel restrictions.