Rules of the Game

Choose one of the two assignments given below, both of which involve interviewing two friends, family members, or acquaintances. You may conduct the interview face to face or over a Zoom/phone call. If you conduct the interview face to face you need to take COVID-19 precautions.

The Rules of Borrowing

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Discuss rules and behavior about borrowing things. To conduct research for this essay, interview at least two people (taking notes, but no need to record) about the following and anything else you find interesting related to this topic. If you’d like, you could intentionally interview people from a particular sub-culture (athletes, college students, college freshmen):

What kinds of things do you commonly borrow from friends? What kinds of things do friends borrow from you?
Which types of friends do you feel comfortable borrowing from? Which types of friends would you never ask to borrow something from?
Would you ever try to borrow something from someone who is not a good friend? If so, why?
What kinds of items are you willing to lend? What kinds of items are you reluctant to lend? What kinds of items would you never lend?
Have you ever had problems related to lending or borrowing things from friends? What happened?
When you lend or borrow something from someone, what are your expectations about (a) the return of the item lent or borrowed; (b) future lending or borrowing from that person?

In your essay be sure to do the following:

Describe the people you interviewed.
Indicate what points they agreed on and where there was disagreement.
Give some examples that they mentioned when answering the questions.
Say in what ways, if any, your own views differ from the responses given by people you interviewed.

The Rules of Paying for Meals in the US

Discuss rules and behavior about paying when people in the United States share a meal at a restaurant. To conduct research for this essay, interview at least two people (taking notes, but no need to record) about the following:

Under what circumstances does one person pay the bill for everybody? If one person pays the bill, does that person leave the tip?
Under what circumstances is the bill split? If the bill is split, when is customary for each person to pay for what they consumed? When is it customary for the bill to be split evenly?
If a bill is shared, who decides how much to tip?
When do you use apps like Venmo and how do you decide how to divide up the bill?

In your essay be sure to do the following:

Describe the people you interviewed.
Indicate what points they agreed on and where there was disagreement.
Give some examples that they mentioned when answering the questions.
Say in what ways, if any, your own views differ from the responses given by people you interviewed.
Describe the last several times you have gone out for meals with people and who paid for what. Did actual behavior match the rules that you and others gave? If it differed, how did it differ and why you think it differed?

Please keep in mind that you need to adhere to the UTC and CDC COVID-19 guidelines while conducting the interview. That means wearing a mask and maintaining 6ft of distance from others or conducting it over the phone/Zoom.

600 words minimum.

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