Episode 275 - Stuck Cooking
In this episode of Awesome Etiquette
Welcome to Awesome Etiquette, where we explore modern etiquette through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty. On today’s show we take your questions on post-thanksgiving drama, tricky Christmas card last names, being stuck cooking during your party and no shoe households. For Awesome Etiquette Sustaining members we talk about turning down a second-kid baby shower. Plus your most excellent feedback, etiquette salute and a postscript segment on thank-you notes from Emily Post’s Etiquette, 1922 edition.
Speaker 1: maybe it's just that you don't know how to use social goodness. See that's old fashioned.
Speaker 2: Watch how busy post
Speaker 1: and they're supposed to act as host and hostess.
Speaker 2: They know that courtesy means showing respect, thinking of the other person, real friendliness.
Speaker 1: Hello
Speaker 2: and welcome to awesome etiquette where
Speaker 1: we explore modern etiquette through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty.
Speaker 2: On today's show, we take your questions on post, thanksgiving, drama, tricky christmas card, last names being stuck cooking during your party and no shoes, households
Speaker 2: for awesome etiquette sustaining members. We talk about turning down a second kid baby shower,
Speaker 1: plus your most excellent feedback etiquette salute and a postscript segment on thank you notes from 1922.
Speaker 2: All that coming up
Speaker 2: awesome etiquette comes to you from the studios of Vermont public radio and is proud to be produced in Burlington Vermont by the Emily Post Institute.
Speaker 1: I'm lizzie post
Speaker 2: and I'm dan post sending
Speaker 1: and I am going to was Sale Wessel, Wasabi Ok. We've looked it up and seen it pronounced both ways but we are doing that thing down in Woodstock this weekend. Yes.
Speaker 2: Parading through the streets singing songs
Speaker 2: probably drinking hot cider.
Speaker 1: I'm sure it is going to be marry mint of all kinds down in Woodstock. I'm doing a book signing for higher etiquette at the clover gift shop and it will have already happened unfortunately, by the time that this show airs,
Speaker 1: but we are really excited for it. And apparently it's just the town gets flooded with people for this wonderful holiday festival.
Speaker 2: So your holiday spirit will get a hearty kick in the pants. It
Speaker 1: will, it will and yours just got one because you and Tunisia and Peugeot went and participated in the River of Lights in Waterbury. Right.
Speaker 2: We did. You
Speaker 1: guys actually make
Speaker 1: a lantern this year? Yes. So what was your lantern?
Speaker 2: Well, the theme for this year's parade and longtime listeners of the show will have heard me talk about this event
Speaker 2: in previous years. The whole town of Waterbury participates in workshops throughout the year, building these paper lanterns. And often there's a theme that's like under the sea or things we eat totally.
Speaker 2: The streets are filled with lanterns that look like vegetables
Speaker 1: creature going by last year was pretty awesome. That one I liked a lot. Nice.
Speaker 2: It's spectacular. The sun goes down, there's a light snow often and thousands of people cascade through the streets and then it
Speaker 2: finishes at a rec park where they're bonfires and
Speaker 1: free hot chocolate.
Speaker 1: I remember that part, it's
Speaker 2: sort of a similar thing to what you're describing down south in Woodstock and this year's theme was recycled things. It was all about the materials that people used to build the lanterns. So it wasn't a
Speaker 2: uh theme in terms of content. It was a theme in terms of structure,
Speaker 1: totally what you guys do.
Speaker 2: We used old milk jugs and decorated them with tissue paper and ribbons of colorful things and hung them on long sticks and it was a niche is first year to really participate. So I went down with her
Speaker 2: and I wasn't thinking clearly because I
Speaker 2: two lanterns and a three year old kind of a lot to manage. But I grabbed a friend who was along the parade route said, here you hold some lanterns and I'll manage three year old and we'll get through this very nice. It was so much fun. If there are any vermonters out there listening, look up the Festival of Lights parade in Waterbury Vermont. It's a not to be missed event in central Vermont,
Speaker 1: well, wherever you are going to be spending some of your upcoming holiday weekends, we are glad you are taking a little bit of time out of your week to spend with us and we would love to answer some of your questions,
Speaker 2: let's get to it.
Speaker 2: Yeah,
Speaker 1: awesome etiquette is here to answer your questions on how to behave and if you have a question for us, you can email it to awesome etiquette at Emily Post dot com. You may leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 kind. That's 8028585463
Speaker 1: on twitter. We are at Emily Post inst on instagram, we are at Emily Post Institute and on facebook we are awesome etiquette. Just remember to use the hashtag awesome etiquette with your social media posts so that we know you want your question on the show.
Speaker 1: Sustaining members, remember to put sustaining member in your message, will answer your questions on the sustaining member site now at patreon dot com slash awesome etiquette where you can access and adds free version of the show and all your bonus questions.
Speaker 1: Yeah.
Speaker 2: Our first question is about a post thanksgiving problem.
Speaker 2: I would like your opinion on a thanksgiving dilemma. My husband and I and our two grown Children were invited to thanksgiving dinner at his brother and sister in law's house.
Speaker 2: Everyone lives in the same metropolitan area. Several weeks beforehand. Our son, who is married and has a two year old child asked us to contact them to request that the dinner be served no later than six p.m. So that it would not be too late for their daughter's bedtime.
Speaker 2: They had to travel an hour to get back home.
Speaker 2: Our son received a lengthy text message from our sister in law describing all the elaborate preparations entailed in cooking a turkey. The underlying point seemed to be that she could not guarantee a six p.m. Dinner. She's a very experienced cook and has prepared many thanksgiving dinners.
Speaker 2: We all arrived at the invited time. Four pm. Dinner was not served until 8:30 p.m.
Speaker 2: After our son and family had left about 7 30 with a baggie of sliced turkey.
Speaker 2: We feel badly that we were not able to share the meal with them. We would have been happy to host the meal this year, but could not, due to the fact that our home is undergoing extensive repair and renovation.
Speaker 2: I told my son that I would make sure the situation would not happen again. I e I cannot foresee accepting another holiday dinner invitation from them.
Speaker 2: We feel that perhaps our sister in law really did not want to host thanksgiving this year.
Speaker 2: I would add that she refuses help in the kitchen. What can one do about a host who behaves like this? Usually you read about the guests causing problems. Is it rude to request a reasonable dinner time? Is it rude for the host to respond as she did with the text message beforehand and to serve dinner so late?
Speaker 2: Thanks
Speaker 1: e Oh, this is a tough one and it's a tough one because I see unfortunate things happening on both sides of this equation. I see a guest who's been invited to someone's holiday meal at their home, asking for the entire meal to be served at a different time.
Speaker 1: I see a host it seems to be not willing to make any concessions and choosing a method like text message, to explain a lot of detail and I think that's always not a good thing.
Speaker 1: I see then assumptions coming in and dividing lines being made that I think might be a little serious for a one year hiccup.
Speaker 1: And so I'm just seeing a lot back and forth here of just a disintegration of what should be a really great holiday experience for people into, oh well we're never going there again. And I can't believe no one would make this accommodation and how dare they asked me to make this accommodation. And you kind of are hearing both sides coming out here and
Speaker 1: I'm a little bit concerned about how this ass got brought up
Speaker 1: rather than saying something like, oh shoot, if dinner is going to be around 7 30 or eight, we probably won't be able to stay for that because our daughter's bedtime is seven and we really need to kind of get on the road by 6 30 in order to, you know, however the timing worked out. I think
Speaker 1: recognizing, oh shoot, if that's when you plan to eat and I can't accommodate that with my daughter's napping schedule. It looks like this won't work out for us. That's the place you start at.
Speaker 1: I think starting from a place of, hey mom, can you ask on? So and so
Speaker 1: if they can hold their, make sure dinner happens by a certain time starts to feel quite a little bit pushy but within the realm of reasonable requests, but still kind of like it's how you make that request. That's going to make a difference.
Speaker 2: What I love about that, how question or thinking about the, how that request is made.
Speaker 2: Is that one of the things that can give it a tone of,
Speaker 2: I'm going to say acceptability is if you're willing to accept whatever answer you receive.
Speaker 1: Yes that makes a huge difference
Speaker 2: because then it's really a request you're letting your host. No I've got this parameter and this would be the extreme of that parameter for me. I'd have to excuse myself at this point
Speaker 2: and that gives them an opportunity to say, oh could we slide dinner a little early or you could even ask is it possible to slide dinner a little early?
Speaker 2: But really truly being willing to say, okay. Whatever that response is is I think part of establishing the tone of that ask in the right way.
Speaker 1: I think then when a guest makes an ask of you
Speaker 1: my thinking is that text message isn't going to be the right method of response when it comes to having to lay out an explanation for why dinner can't be accommodated to your guests time schedule. So rather than listing out, I love let's listen that she describes how to cook the turkey.
Speaker 1: Like
Speaker 1: cooking a turkey is not the easiest of tasks, it does take a long time. A lot of people end up messing up the timing and you can easily end up with a range of when that turkey is actually going to be done. And I think that that's important to recognize that any host on thanksgiving, I don't care who you are, Any host on thanksgiving
Speaker 1: is going to say, well we're gonna aim to eat at for instance, in our family, it was I think three, and we ended up eating it for like it does just happen. And so I both sympathize with the host who on the one hand is going, are you kidding me? I've got the mashed potatoes, the list of that, and we then learned later on this is self brought that this isn't you know like
Speaker 1: she's not asking for help and still having a million things to do,
Speaker 1: but I think it's important to recognize this and to say that okay host, if something comes up, that sounds like it's going to be tricky to navigate call your guest and say, hey your mom, just let me know that you guys were trying to get out around six.
Speaker 1: The way that I typically set up the dishes for thanksgiving is going to make that really, really hard. Is there a workaround we could do or
Speaker 1: should we just kind of say this year is going to be tougher and we'll make sure to send you home with as much good left over, you know, as much good pre leftovers or I don't know what you would call a leftover that comes from before the meal as
Speaker 2: extra
Speaker 1: covers. I don't know, but I think that that would have been a good way for the sister in law to handle it.
Speaker 1: So neither of those things happen and we're now at the position where
Speaker 1: dinner is served later than expected and mom to the couple who's had to leave is pretty upset that you know, dinner couldn't have been enjoyed with the entire family and the efforts weren't made to make that happen.
Speaker 1: This is the point where that mom has the choice
Speaker 1: to say we aren't going to do thanksgiving dinner with them in the future this year. They couldn't offer to host it themselves. Their house was not ideal for the situation. So I think that makes a lot of sense that like you might have to just chalk this year up to not a great year host at your own house next year, offered to have everyone come,
Speaker 1: have them cook dishes if you want. You don't have to, you know, put it all on you.
Speaker 1: But I think that that might help put you in the driver's seat for this for next year. I think where I would encourage e to not go is the assumptions, the assumptions that
Speaker 1: somehow sister in law did this on purpose or did it in a way because she wants to be controlling about the kitchen or it feels a burden that somehow no one has offered to relieve her of. And again this year, tough year they had stuff going on at their house. They couldn't really offer that up. But I'm wondering about the other kids, you know, e has two kids. I'm wondering if one of the others could have hosted or you know, how many other people were involved too? Did the couple who were hosting have four kids of their own all with their families coming? And I'm just curious how many people we were really dealing with. You know
Speaker 2: I hear what you're saying, there's so much going on and we don't know about the host other considerations, how many guests, how exactly their day is planned out. You can say to yourself, oh
Speaker 2: couldn't you just start the Turkey a couple hours earlier?
Speaker 1: We
Speaker 2: don't know, we don't, we really don't. And there are a lot of things that go into hosting and a lot of latitude is given to a host for those reasons.
Speaker 2: I also really like the way you're willing to say okay this year didn't go great, let's try to put a bubble around that a little bit. Let's try not to let that impact is really important.
Speaker 2: Familial relationships and future holidays and future times that we hopefully get to spend together that go a little more smoothly than this one did.
Speaker 2: If this is something that continues year after year after year of it's always a problem scheduling the meal. If there's always difficult feelings afterwards on either side of the equation,
Speaker 2: then I would say think about it, think about how you organize your holidays so that they feel like good holidays.
Speaker 1: I like, no, I like that distinction between whether this is a one off tough year or whether this is really a trend in tough years
Speaker 1: going to get tougher.
Speaker 2: We say on the show all the time. The challenge for really good etiquette and the challenge for really good behavior is how you deal with difficult situations, how you deal with awkward moments, how you deal with people who are being rude
Speaker 2: and those are oftentimes moments where you get to shine, where you get to be the bigger person and you get to feel good about that and it doesn't need to be a superior feeling. It can be a feeling that really comes from holding yourself accountable to a high standard of how you interact with people and
Speaker 2: moving forward. I would do my best to make sure that this year's
Speaker 2: bad taste doesn't
Speaker 2: become the setting of the table for next year. The one other thought that I have is about a discussion with your son, where you've talked with him about
Speaker 2: not wanting this to happen again and I would just be sure to revisit that really early next year so that if you
Speaker 2: do, you want to offer to host, you can do that soon enough. Everybody feels good about accepting that offer from you.
Speaker 1: Sometime in august, sometime in september or when the family starts talking about what the holiday holiday gatherings are going to look
Speaker 2: like exactly. Or if there's going to be a timing issue like this again, if someone else is hosting, you have plenty of time to say in a way that's not going to leave anyone feeling slighted
Speaker 2: that you really want to be able to have this meal with your son and his whole family. So this year you're going to try to do that at your house where you do have enough control of the situation to make that promise that this won't happen again.
Speaker 2: E thank you so much for this question, believe it or not, we've heard a couple versions of exactly this question and really appreciate the opportunity to talk about it.
Speaker 2: Mhm.
Speaker 1: As Joan is making plans for entertaining a few of her friends at a buffet supper,
Speaker 1: she asks advice well ahead of time.
Speaker 1: She has learned that what is correct in terms of etiquette is also highly practical and logical.
Speaker 1: Our next question is titled christmas card conundrum. Good afternoon. My name is Anna and I have a tricky situation. I'd love your help with. I have a friend who has a daughter and is now in a relationship with a different man and they have a child together. So
Speaker 1: all in all three separate last names,
Speaker 1: how can I address the christmas card to reflect its for everyone without also upsetting anyone. Thank you ANna E. Or an I. E.
Speaker 2: On the first thought I have here is to go with first names and I'm thinking inside the card that you just address people by their first names where everyone is going to be included and then everyone is part of the card. And you've got a really personal route
Speaker 2: that doesn't require you to list out everybody's last names independently.
Speaker 1: So what would you do on the outside of the card?
Speaker 2: I'm thinking I would send it to the friend,
Speaker 2: the person who I'm the closest to and that's the outer
Speaker 1: envelope. That's not the outer envelope for christmas card. Nice dry. It's kind of an outer envelope. No, not even close. Help me out. What would you do? I would do one of two things. I think either I would address it to the individuals by their first name again on the outer envelope. Call me crazy. I'm going to run with that. Like if you got a card that was to dan Puccini's aria at, you know, and then your address up in that town you live in.
Speaker 1: Why don't you think that? That was nice. Like I wouldn't be offended by it in any way, shape or form.
Speaker 2: It wouldn't strike me as odd in the slightest.
Speaker 1: Would you think? It was strange if you
Speaker 1: got a card that was to the and then you had the last name of each of the three last name and then families. So to the jones,
Speaker 1: johnson
Speaker 1: smith Bart family. I don't know. That's just random name. Sorry actually that doesn't sound terrible to. I don't think it is either. So those are the two that I would go for. I think you could also absolutely do the two parents
Speaker 1: and then the and then on the next line do each of the Children's names written out in full and then you're getting everybody's full and last name on the card. But you're recognizing that there you know there's a couple and then two Children who live there. So that would be another way that you could do it.
Speaker 2: I like your options better than mine.
Speaker 1: So mine started with yours. Let's
Speaker 2: go with that. But I've been thinking of the person that you're the most connected
Speaker 1: to. Yeah, yeah,
Speaker 2: you just send it to them and then internally got the
Speaker 1: first for everyone. But kids love getting mail.
Speaker 2: They do and I like the way your solution
Speaker 2: includes everyone. And that's nice.
Speaker 2: I also like how you have an option to use those last names if you want to introduce that level of formality. But for holiday cards, for me, that informal option feels personal, feels close
Speaker 1: me to Absolutely ana we hope that that helps and have a wonderful time sending out your holiday cards this year.
Speaker 2: Mm
Speaker 2: Our next question is about getting stuck in the kitchen.
Speaker 2: Dear, lizzie and dan, thank you both for the wonderful podcast and years of helpful advice. I have hosted an annual christmas party for the past five years. It is usually the same group of friends and it takes place in my smallish two bedroom apartment. I always have it after dinner time
Speaker 2: but provide appetizers, desserts, beer, wine, and a large batch of specialty cocktail.
Speaker 2: In years past, some of the attendees have been kind enough to bring appetizers and desserts as well.
Speaker 2: My issue arises with a few guests in particular, while I appreciate their generosity in bringing dishes to share. They tend to come with their dishes uncooked and unassembled. They take control of the kitchen and oven. While I'm also trying to get everything out for the party,
Speaker 2: I'd be more than fine with them heating up something in the oven. But I'm talking about cooking raw chicken on the stovetop, chopping vegetables and then leaving it for me to clean up as guests are filtering in.
Speaker 2: A lot of guests spent time in the kitchen during the party so I can't leave the mess to be dealt with later
Speaker 2: this year. These guests also want to bring specialty cocktails to put out in addition to the one I make every year.
Speaker 2: I'm a little bothered by this for a few reasons. I don't have space on my counter drink area to serve multiple specialty cocktails.
Speaker 2: I don't want to be responsible for cleaning up the mess from them, making the cocktails and it will make it hard for me to plan out how much I need to buy for my drink.
Speaker 2: Is there a kind and appreciative way I can ask people to come with appetizers assembled and to say that they don't need to make fancy cocktails for the whole party.
Speaker 2: I really want to spend this year enjoying the guests instead of cleaning up the tornado in the kitchen.
Speaker 2: Thank you so much and wishing you both a very happy holiday season, sincerely stuck in the kitchen
Speaker 1: stuck in the kitchen. Your guests sound horrible. I hate to say this. I'm just going for it though because they're not the ones asking the question,
Speaker 1: but this sounds like a nightmare. You invite people over and they show up like one time even with the uncooked chicken, it's like one thing if someone stove goes out of their gas, electricity goes off and they're like, oh my gosh, I've got the meal, have prepped, can I bring it to your house to finish it off shore? Fine. Make the accommodation, but like
Speaker 1: vegetables prepped and shop and then the horror, they don't clean up after themselves
Speaker 2: and this year they want to up the ante and bring more stuff and get into the cocktails.
Speaker 1: I think that it is perfectly acceptable for you as a host early on to say, I'm changing things up a little bit this year. I just want to give you guys a heads up.
Speaker 1: We're just having one type of cocktail or I'm so thrilled whenever anyone wants to bring anything to contribute so that we have more appetizers and desserts to go around. But I am going to say that everything needs to be fully prepped and ready to go.
Speaker 1: I would even hesitate to say with the exception of warming something in the oven. Like, like I feel like even that is going to break the seal into skillets being brought out and things being cooked and boiled and stuff like that. And so there's part of me that wants to say like maybe with a few you can say, and of course if your spinach dip needs reheating, we'll reheat it. But I think that if it's going to be like, you know, the invitation that allows people to start breaking through into really using the kitchen, but
Speaker 1: that you shouldn't go for it and I would definitely make it clear that your goal is so that the kitchen where people hang out a lot in is clear and ready for guests to be interacting in and not being used as a kitchen for the evening.
Speaker 2: What do you think about the cocktails? Can you just put the kibosh on that and say thank you, but no thank you.
Speaker 1: This is one, you know, I really go back and forth on this. I think that for some friends and for some hosts you're going to make the accommodation and just say, you know what? If people want to bring more cocktails, yes, I can find a space to serve more cocktails. But I think again, the mixer has to be premixed. I think you even want to say we're only going to do pictures of things, not mixing cocktail drinks at the bar.
Speaker 1: That that might be a way to help whoever wants to bring these cocktails.
Speaker 1: My guess is that you've got like two guests who are really excited about a particular cocktail and they wanted at every possible holiday party they can have it at and they love your party. So they want to bring it to yours. You've got people who seem to be excited about joining the celebration. So I think you want to use that enthusiasm. You just want to corral it into something that's going to be useful for you. And when people say things like,
Speaker 1: oh well I'd love to bring this, but I'm gonna need to do this this and that, that's when you say, I think maybe we want to save it for a different party then, you know, I would really love it instead if you could either bring it as a pre made mix or let's save it for a different night and it's just you're you're being polite,
Speaker 1: but you're getting it clearly across. No, not tonight, not this way. I love that
Speaker 2: idea of corralling enthusiasm, not squashing it because that's so the spirit that I would wanna grab on to hear that
Speaker 2: take advantage of those offers and respond with a similar enthusiasm,
Speaker 2: you can respond with it, thank you, but no thank you enthusiastically. Oh, I so appreciate your
Speaker 2: wanting to chip in on the beverages. This is what I'm dealing with. I've got limited space and if we can figure out a way to do it, that
Speaker 2: falls into these parameters, that'd be great. If not, let's think about doing this some other time.
Speaker 2: Simple Clean,
Speaker 2: pretty easy because you're thinking about this ahead of time. It makes it so much easier. I really like the way you've reflected on what didn't work in the past and you're trying to head it off before it happens again,
Speaker 1: stuck in the kitchen. We hope this gets you out of the kitchen and into the party.
Speaker 1: Here we are, the nice friendly party. Watch carefully everything the people at this party do and say maybe you don't have many friends who eat this way, but you certainly know some who act this way. If Betty were a friend of yours, how would you rate her conduct plus or minus.
Speaker 1: Our next question is titled No shoe households.
Speaker 2: Hi lizzie and dan. My question deals with individuals whose homes are shoe free zones. Even for guests,
Speaker 2: I understand the request from people I am close to such as close family and close friends, but the thought of taking my shoes off and just walking around in my socks or worse bare feet in other people's homes makes me uncomfortable.
Speaker 2: I'm talking about when I visit my brother in law who my husband and I aren't close to. A random friend of a friend who we barely know or my friend's parents house where I rarely go
Speaker 2: in the scheme of things. I know it's not really a big deal, but is there an elegant way to refuse to take off my shoes or do I just suck it up, get over it and lose the shoes? I apologize if this situation has been brought up before. I have not yet gotten through all of the podcast episodes. Thanks in advance, lose the shoes,
Speaker 1: lose the shoes. This is a classic. It's definitely this time of year. This, this comes up the most and I think a lot of that happens because we go to holiday parties where were often a little bit more dressed up and
Speaker 1: for many of us, it then becomes a big question of if were then asked to dress down by removing our shoes, is that fair? Is that comfortable? Is that necessary? You're going to be cleaning up after a party anyway. You know, a lot of people are really freaked out about germs from shoes
Speaker 1: depending on where you live. It might be a bigger lesser concern.
Speaker 1: The solution lose the shoes is to bring a pair of clean indoor. What I think of as party shoes with you wherever you are going to the place where I get upset our host that try to put the kibosh on, even that and that to me is like not okay. Like you need to be able to let your guests be shoot. Some people need shoes
Speaker 1: for all kinds of different reasons, whether it's balance or because they have some kind of foot thing going on. It's really important that you not force people into a situation. So I want you lose the shoes to be able to have the confidence to say, oh I brought a pair of indoor shoes and they're all nice and clean
Speaker 1: um and feel confident then putting your endorse shoes and wearing them during the party.
Speaker 1: If other people haven't done that, don't don't let that feel awkward for
Speaker 2: you. I like that so much lose the shoes asks for an elegant solution. And this is to my mind the best kind of elegant and that it's so simple. I think so too. And simplicity, I think in my mind it's my aesthetic often
Speaker 2: equals a certain elegance. It also gives you complete control. I love the way you're calling them your party shoes. And I also love the way when you introduced
Speaker 2: the idea that you brought them to your host, your explicitly mentioning that they're clean and that there for this purpose so that you've understood the house rules and you've really made an effort to honor them in your own way.
Speaker 1: I think it's super important. This is one where I totally understand people wanting to cut down on mess, to track a lot of dirt through their homes and on a day to day basis when people are just stopping by maybe when
Speaker 1: it's you having another family over for dinner, you know, you abide by those kind of rules. But when it's a dress up party, when it's a holiday, when it's festive,
Speaker 1: I firmly come down on the side that guests should not be asked to remove their shoes or they should be in advance asked to bring a pair of indoor shoes to the party. And that's just me. I as the host, I'm taking on the responsibility of cleaning up after the party, that's going to include my floors too. You know,
Speaker 2: this is not an uncommon question. We've even done pulling on the Emily Post website because we are so curious how people respond to this and we are aware that different places, there are different trends and people feel differently about it. I'll mention some of the things that come up frequently around this one is that hosts who are regularly asking this of all guests
Speaker 2: think about ways to accommodate guests, keeping some slippers around if possible, so that they have something to offer guests if they're asking them to remove their shoes. And I'm stepping away from the more formal holiday
Speaker 1: party here.
Speaker 2: We talk about having a comfortable place for someone to sit and remove their shoes when they enter the house so that someone isn't
Speaker 2: showing up and they've got their hostess gift and their coat and
Speaker 2: now they're
Speaker 1: trying to balance on one leg on doing a shoelace
Speaker 2: sitting on the floor. But it can be really tricky. So thinking just practically about how you manage that for people and help people manage that as they arrive is another thing that people who ask this of their guests often do to make it an easier ask. I also love that people are letting people know ahead of time so that they can remember to bring a set of slippers or where socks they're comfortable wearing around the house or bring those party shoes. If that's the best solution,
Speaker 1: lose the shoes, we hope this can help you keep your shoes on.
Speaker 1: What are you going to do with a soldier wearing sandals? Private john on o of New Jersey has his drill
Speaker 2: instructor stumped. Gotta get shoes
Speaker 1: for the new recruit or army discipline is shot. Trouble is ah nowhere size 16 triple A shoes
Speaker 2: and the army doesn't
Speaker 1: stop them. Thank you for your questions. Please send us updates, comments or feedback on our answers to awesome etiquette at Emily Post dot com. You can leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 K. I. N. D. That's 8028585463
Speaker 1: on instagram. We are at Emily Post Institute and on facebook we are awesome etiquette on twitter. You can find us at Emily Post inst just use the hashtag awesome etiquette with your social media posts so that we know you want your question on the show.
Speaker 2: It's time for our feedback segment where we hear from you about the questions we answer and the topics we cover today, we hear from Katie and Robin regarding episode to 64 the toilet seat up or down at work. Question
Speaker 2: Hi lizzie and dan. I'm emailing for the first time ever and wanted to thank you so so much for your fantastic podcast. I'm a high school counselor for at risk youth and if there's anyone who requires consideration, respect and honesty in their lives, it's a teenager who's struggling.
Speaker 2: I have a 40 minute commute to and from work, which is often the perfect amount of time to listen to an episode of your show.
Speaker 2: I have some feedback for episode 2 64 regarding toilet seats. This is a conversation that my husband and I used to have fairly often until I made a point that he couldn't argue with.
Speaker 2: Here's my view. Women never need the toilet seat up. But there are, let's say times when a man will in fact sit down to use the washroom since both men and women have used for the toilet seat when it's down, doesn't it seem fair to say that the toilet seat should be reset in the down position after each use
Speaker 2: that way, it's ready for anyone who may need it.
Speaker 2: This point of view lead my husband to admit that he should in fact put the seat down after he uses it, which he does
Speaker 2: usually
Speaker 2: thanks so much again for your wonderful show and for helping me to grow both as a person and a professional, sincerely Katie from Ontario.
Speaker 1: I don't know if I want to touch that with a 10 ft ball. I feel like I could get in the middle of like, I don't know. But if you put both the lid down, then everyone has to lift something or
Speaker 1: since we are the only ones who require, I mean it's like does the requirement fall on the group
Speaker 1: that needs it down or the group that needs it up? Sometimes, you know what I mean? I don't know.
Speaker 2: Or because there's crossover. Do you default to the side where that cross over
Speaker 2: occupies a portion of the use pie?
Speaker 1: Which is what Katie is suggesting? Yes. Yes. I'm still lid down all the way. And I think that Robin is going to get to that for us.
Speaker 2: Robin Wright's just a quick note of feedback on episode number 2 64 regarding etiquette around workplace toilet seats,
Speaker 2: google toilet plume.
Speaker 1: No, don't
Speaker 2: and try not to go down the rabbit hole. Suffice it to say that the CDC continues to study whether or not infectious diseases can be spread by aerosolized particles arising from the toilet during flushing.
Speaker 2: Even if you can't contract a disease, it's still gross as who knows what lands on everything in the bathroom in my house. We always lower the seat and lid before flushing to keep all that contained. Then everybody can set it up to their liking when they enter the bathroom. Problem solved Robin.
Speaker 1: I'm digging it. I'm digging it. What I do like though about Katie's advice is that they worked it out between the two of them as to what would work and people actually took the time to then change their behavior. To me. That's like a huge like communication compromise and commitment win here. You know what I mean? We talk about the three season that roommate book that I wrote
Speaker 1: like this is a perfect example of it.
Speaker 1: And then
Speaker 1: like I said, my own method would be would be Robin's method because then like whether whether plume is a problem or not, at least everything's staying contained in the toilet,
Speaker 2: well, we've referenced going down rabbit holes and this is
Speaker 1: going down toilet bowls.
Speaker 2: Another consideration is that not every toilet has a lid, particularly workplace toilet? Yes,
Speaker 1: no, that's very, very true. So
Speaker 2: the lid closed solution isn't necessarily a universal solution, particularly in the workplace.
Speaker 1: Maybe all of the toilets. Companies will start making lids in public bathrooms standard.
Speaker 2: Perhaps a new podcast sponsor.
Speaker 1: Robin and Katie, thank you so much for your feedback. We really, really appreciate it,
Speaker 1: but much more important.
Speaker 2: keeping clean and meat is something
Speaker 1: we expect of everyone as a health measure
Speaker 1: for ourselves and for our community.
Speaker 1: Don't you think you can do it
Speaker 2: and thank you for sending us your thoughts and updates. Please do keep them coming. You can send your next question, comment or update two awesome etiquette at Emily Post dot com. You can leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 kind. That's 8028585463
Speaker 1: Yeah,
Speaker 1: it's time for our post group segment where we dive deeper into a topic of etiquette and today we're going to talk about thank you's and thing you note because it is the season, my goodness. Whether it's for a holiday party, a gift, um a wonderful year of service with someone. There are so many reasons to write thank you notes. In the 1922 edition of Emily Post etiquette has some really great old school fun language and examples in it. So we thought we would straight up inspire you by reading. Thank you. Note after. Thank you notes, Summer for gifts, summer for favors, summer for all kinds of things. So let's get to some. Thanks.
Speaker 1: Emily refers to these as formal thank you's and she has three different examples. The first
Speaker 1: Dear Mrs Gilding, it was more than sweet of you and mr gilding to send us such a lovely clock. Thank you very, very much. Looking forward to seeing you on the 10th. Very sincerely mary smith
Speaker 1: sometimes, as in the two examples above. Thanks to the husband are definitely expressed in the writing to the wife usually. However you in quotes is understood to mean you both.
Speaker 1: The second example
Speaker 1: dear Mrs worldly. All my life. I have wanted a piece of jade but in my wanting I have never imagined one quite so beautiful as the one you have sent me. It was wonderfully sweet of you and I thank you even more than I can tell you for the pleasure you have given me affectionately, mary smith.
Speaker 1: I'm charmed. I was going to say, you're just giggling like crazy over there.
Speaker 1: All right, The third dear, Mrs eminent,
Speaker 1: thank you for these wonderful prints. They go to beautifully with some old english ones that jim's uncle sent us and our dining room will be quite perfect as two walls,
Speaker 1: hoping that you are surely coming to the wedding. Very sincerely mary smith.
Speaker 1: Those are our formal examples. The
Speaker 2: language is so spectacular. Obviously today it would come across as too much, Way
Speaker 1: too much, but the
Speaker 2: structure of the note is almost exactly what we recommend
Speaker 1: in my life. Have I seen a piece of J this beautiful?
Speaker 2: It personalizes, It references the specific thing being thanked for and there's a future action mentioned at the end that sets you up for continued engagement or correspondence. I like it. Well done Emily. What
Speaker 1: are some of our other categories?
Speaker 2: So, this falls under the category. Very intimate.
Speaker 2: Dear Aunt Kate. Really. You are too generous. It is outrageous of you. But of course it is the most beautiful bracelet and I am so excited over it. I hardly know what I am doing. You are too good to me and you spoil me. But I do love you and it. And thank you With all my heart mary
Speaker 1: mary's getting some really good presence here. Man, jade and
Speaker 1: and brooches and bracelets.
Speaker 1: Mhm.
Speaker 2: So not very intimate but intimate. Okay, dear Miss neighbor. The tea cloth is perfectly exquisite. I have never seen such beautiful work. I appreciate your lovely gift more than I can tell you both for its own sake and for your kindness in making it for me.
Speaker 2: Don't forget you are coming in on Tuesday afternoon to see the presence. Lovingly mary.
Speaker 1: So that's definitely a reference to someone being gifted something for a wedding.
Speaker 1: And then they're sending a response when you used to come in. And actually the presents were displayed in one of the front rooms of your house. And so that that's a little bit of the future action that that we lied to. We say. You know, it's good to say what's coming in the future is a gift viewing date, a
Speaker 2: slightly simpler option. Also in the intimate but not very intimate category.
Speaker 2: My dear Mrs upstart, thank you for the very handsome candlesticks you sent us. They were a great surprise, but it was more than kind of you to think of us very sincerely mary smith.
Speaker 1: I like how clean and simple that is. You know I was a friend had reached out the other month saying I don't know what to do about my daughter. She doesn't write great thank you notes.
Speaker 1: She just says thanks for the cash and like what do I do? I said, you know it can be very simple but very direct.
Speaker 1: These are thanks for christmas or other presents
Speaker 1: dear lucy, I really think it was adorable of you all to have a chair like yours made for me. It was worth adding a year to my age for such a nice birthday present.
Speaker 1: Jack says, I am never going to have a chance to sit in it. However, if he gets there first and even the Children look at it with longing
Speaker 1: at all events. I am perfectly enchanted with it and thank you ever and ever so much affectionately sally.
Speaker 1: I like that. It was the best chair ever made ever, ever, ever ever.
Speaker 2: There's something very post family about finding something and being absolutely convinced that you've discovered the best in the world.
Speaker 1: The best. The best. The best.
Speaker 1: Dear Uncle Arthur. I know I ought to have opened it until christmas but I couldn't resist the look of the package and then putting it on at once. I am all dressed up in your beautiful chain and it's one of the loveliest things that I have ever seen and I certainly am lucky to have it given to me
Speaker 1: thank you 1000 and then more times for it. Rosalie.
Speaker 2: Okay, I've got to pick my jaw up off the floor. Did Emily just admit that she opened the President early. Well
Speaker 1: Rosalie admitted she opened the President early. She couldn't resist the look of the baggage. I know anticipations almost the best part. Well, you know what's really interesting about these that are under the thanks for christmas or other presents category? Is that
Speaker 1: I mean the first one said affectionately as a closer and then sally. But this last one to dear Uncle Arthur, which I should note both of these two examples have been dear lucy colon. Dear Uncle Arthur. Arthur. Excuse me colon. Um and I think that's an interesting setup. But
Speaker 1: the one to Uncle Arthur we don't have any kind of a close. There is no can't wait to see you next summer or
Speaker 1: you know love you to pieces or best or sincerely or affectionately or regards any of those things. It's just Rosalie with a period which I find really interesting about old school. Thank you
Speaker 1: the final that we have under thanks for christmas and other presences.
Speaker 1: Dear kate, I am fascinated with my utility box. It is too beguiling for words. You are the cleverest one anyway, for finding what no one else can and everyone wants. I don't know how you do it. And you certainly were sweet to think of me. Thank you Dear ethel.
Speaker 2: I love this. This is my favorite one
Speaker 1: right here because
Speaker 2: it's it's acknowledging the sort of unique quality of the gift and the skill of the
Speaker 2: give her and finding it. And those are the pleasures that I take the most in giving and receiving presents. So I appreciate the thanks acknowledging those things.
Speaker 1: Okay, the next to that I think are going to be relevant for this time of year. Our thanks for present to a baby and I like that. It's just thanks for present
Speaker 1: to a baby. Not thanks for a present. Thanks for the present
Speaker 1: or presidents, plural
Speaker 1: dan father. Why don't you read these two? Thank you notes that are coming on behalf of Children from their parents.
Speaker 2: Dear Mrs. Kind heart. Of course it would be because no one else can. So like you the sack you made the baby is the prettiest thing I have ever seen and is perfectly adorable on her.
Speaker 2: Thank you as usual. My dear Mrs kind heart for your goodness,
Speaker 2: your affectionate sally following.
Speaker 2: Dear Mrs norman, thank you ever so much for the lovely afghan you sent the baby. It is by far the prettiest one he has. It is so soft and close. He doesn't get his fingers tangled in it.
Speaker 2: Do come in and see him, won't you were both allowed visitors a special ones every day between four and 5 30 affectionately, always lucy,
Speaker 1: so fun.
Speaker 2: These are the
Speaker 1: light and there's certainly much more complex and
Speaker 1: they're much more, I feel like over the top,
Speaker 1: like I don't think nowadays we say that you have to say something is your absolute most favorite. Best ever. Makes you feel like a million bucks type gift
Speaker 1: if you don't actually think that. And so, but I think in Emily's day it was much more about just say say the lovely thing because that's what part of the exchange is about. And it is, it is pleasant. It's pleasant to hear from someone that the thing you got them is especially loved.
Speaker 1: I think we now live in closer quarters. We oftentimes see each other more often and it's easy to then poke a hole and oh, but you never wear that thing. That is especially the most wonderful thing you've ever received in your
Speaker 2: life,
Speaker 2: sincerity, believability, authenticity, being important. You never want to over sell a thanks and end up in that saccharin territory where so many
Speaker 1: of these examples are
Speaker 2: uncomfortable.
Speaker 2: But I do think we can take inspiration from the spirit of these notes and we wish you the best as you get down to writing your notes this season,
Speaker 2: We like to end our show on a high note. So we turn to you to hear about the good etiquette you're seeing and experiencing out in the world and that can come in so many forms. Today we hear from Wendy,
Speaker 2: hi dan and lizzie. I have no idea where if this might fit into a show, but regardless, I wanted to share this article about an irish elementary school replacing homework with acts of kindness for the month of december.
Speaker 2: The students are practicing random acts of kindness and then keeping a kindness journal where they write and draw pictures about their experience.
Speaker 2: The school principals line quote. But there is nobody in this world who wouldn't benefit from an act of kindness and the joy of kindness is that it costs nothing. End quote.
Speaker 2: This resonates with the tenor of consideration, respect and honesty being free, but also being intentional choices.
Speaker 2: I'm not sure if this is an etiquette salute, but I thought that the two of you and Cindy sending and other listeners might be interested in hearing about the work these Children and teachers are doing in Ireland anyways. I thought it was a really magical article and I hope you like it to enjoy the lovely snow this afternoon. Best regards Wendy
Speaker 2: Wendy. Thank you so much. I think this is definitely a salute and at some point I'd love to return and do a postscript where we look at kindness and
Speaker 2: how magical it can feel and how it really does cost nothing. But for now I really want to acknowledge and honor those students in Ireland and also you for sharing this lovely idea with us.
Speaker 2: Thank you so much
Speaker 1: and thank you for listening. Thank you to everyone who sent us something. Please connect with us and share this show with friends, family and co workers. And of course on social media you can send us questions, comments and salutes by email to awesome etiquette at Emily Post dot com
Speaker 1: iphone. You can leave us a message or text at 802858 K. I. N. D. That's 8028585463
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Speaker 1: Yeah.
Speaker 1: Yeah.