Sunday, April 14, 2024
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Because You Are Polite

by Ginger Philbrick

This column has had some serious issues to discuss lately, and just when I was thinking I needed to lighten it up a bit, I opened my email to find the following.

I need answers for future get-togethers:

What is your opinion on slurping soup if it is very, very good? Also, for the last bit at the bottom of bowl, when I tilt it, do I spoon up the remainder by scraping it toward or away from myself?

How many ice cubes can one put in wine before drinking?

When loose spaghetti noodles are hanging from your fork or mouth, does one use fingers to control, or scissors (if you planned ahead)?  Also, what about cheese from french onion soup; how high can one lift the spoon before action is required, and what would that action be?

When tasting others’ food, does one use their own or others’ utensils to collect what is being complimentarily tasted.  And should food be removed from that utensil with teeth only, or lips?

How many scrapes are allowed to capture the last remnant of ice cream at the bottom of the bowl? If chocolate, licking is still accepted as proper, true?

If particles of food are seen on others’ faces, should we mention that they missed their mouth, or remove them ourselves by flicking them with our finger?

If a specific gratuity is indicated on a bill, should one revise it or grin and bear it?  I personally give an automatic 3% no matter what level of service.

Regarding the bill, when it is presented should one say “I’ll get it” knowing one didn’t want to say “I’ll get it”?  It has been suggested that as soon as the bill hits the table, one could say “Please let me get the tip.” What is your take?

Enquirer,  Irvington

Thank you, dear Enquirer, for this tongue-in-check (I hope) submission. I must say that I was relieved and happy that you added that your only saving grace is that you don’t wear your hat inside buildings, especially when sitting down to eat. That’s a pretty big save!!

Ginger Philbrick is the owner of Because You Are Polite LLC. You are invited to email your manners questions to her and she will respond as time and space allow. You may contact her at [email protected].

Rappahannock Record Staff
Rappahannock Record Staff
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