The Personal Guarantee, as the name implies, was and is invoked when the guarantor wants to communicate total certainty to the rest of the group.
Side Bar (to Open Bar): Dude - can you pick me up at the airport next Tuesday? I am totally stuck for a ride.That's the beauty of The Personal Guarantee. Once issued, it leaves absolutely no doubt whatsoever. And, to maintain its seriousness, it is only used in situations where it is warranted ("I personally guarantee that I will get you a beer when I come back from the kitchen," would be considered a violation of the sanctity and significance of The Personal Guarantee). Because the thing is, once you issue your own personal guarantee, you have to follow through on it.
Open Bar: Sure, no problem.
Side Bar: Listen - you can't forget, ok? I have to be in court on Tuesday afternoon, so I need you to be there on time to get me back to the city. And you are a degenerate lowlife who I can't depend on for anything. I don't even like you that much, let alone trust you. And the only reason I am even asking you is because every car service in the tri-state area is booked that day, and every other friend we have has turned me down.
Open Bar: Dude, I personally guarantee I will pick you up at the airport on Tuesday, and I will be on time.
Side Bar: Oh. Great, thanks.
In the history of The Personal Guarantee there has only been, to my knowledge, one violation. *Someone else can fill in the details here if they can remember them.* I know that Diesel personally guaranteed something, it didn't come to pass, and there was a lengthy trial in my driveway, resulting in his guarantee privileges being revoked for some period of time. He may still be on probation.
The Personal Guarantee has been a useful device for settling debate, and giving reliable assurances on important and quasi-important matters. But it has only stood the test of time because we have all honored the rule that it be used sparingly. When The Personal Guarantee is thrown down, a hush falls over the room, and people take notice (well, we do anyway). Even amidst our many years of drinking and general debauchery, there have been few - if any - instances of casual use of The Personal Guarantee. Its sanctity has been respected by all.
Chuck - locked in a bitter dispute with Open Bar regarding the order in which tags appear on the left side of your screen (alpha or numeric, with Chuck advocating forcefully for the latter) - has issued invoked The Personal Guarantee that his name will always appear at the top of the list. In other words, he will post with enough frequency, and include his tag in a sufficient number of posts so as to ensure that no tag has a higher number associated with it than his own.
As I commented earlier, this is an irresponsible use of The Personal Guarantee. Setting aside the obvious risk that Open Bar can just put up like 50 posts some night when you are in bed (he stays up late, you know), take a screen shot, and invalidate your guarantee solely as a matter of spite (and no, he is not above that), there is the distinct possibility that you will have other things to do, and someone will occasionally go in front of you.
I accept the possibility that Chuck fully intended The Personal Guarantee that was issued today to be taken with the level of seriousness that I have described. Perhaps he knows what he has promised, and will stand by it. But this is a dangerous game.
And that is why The Personal Guarantee ought not be used for a promise of such extended duration, nor on such an insignificant matter. It flies in the face of everything that The Personal Guarantee was meant to - and, to this day, does - accomplish. For shame.