Episode 303: Summer BBQ
In this episode of Awesome Etiquette
Welcome to the Awesome Etiquette podcast, where we explore modern etiquette through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty. On today’s show we take your questions on: wanting to minimize interactions with people during the pandemic, being worried about not attending a wedding, a messy married name, and a family feud that affects a wedding. For Awesome Etiquette sustaining members your question of the week is about how to respond to criticism from friends about a fast-moving relationship. Plus your most excellent feedback, etiquette salute and a postscript backyard bbqs during covid-19.
Speaker 1: Maybe it's just that you don't know how to use social courtesy. That's old fashion.
Speaker 1: Watch how busy post and damn posts and act as host and hostess.
Speaker 1: They know that courtesy means showing respect, thinking of the other person. Really Friendliness. Hello and welcome toe Awesome etiquette,
Speaker 2: where we explore modern etiquette through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty. On
Speaker 1: today's show, we take your questions on wanting to minimize interactions with people during the pandemic, being worried about not attending a wedding, a messy married name and a family feud that effects a wedding
Speaker 2: for awesome etiquette sustaining members. Our question of the week is about how to respond to criticism from friends about a fast moving relationship,
Speaker 1: plus your most excellent feedback etiquette salute and a summertime postscript on backyard barbecues with a small coated twist. All that's coming up
Speaker 1: awesome etiquette comes to you from the studios of our home offices in Vermont and is proud to be produced by the Emily Post Institute.
Speaker 2: I'm Lizzie Post
Speaker 1: and I'm Dan Post Senning.
Speaker 2: Uh, hey, sounds like somebody got chicken. Anybody wants some fresh eggs? Fresh eggs were delivering fresh eggs this morning. Yeah, I want fresh eggs when we do our very socially distanced lunch tomorrow. Please, please, please bring me fresh chicken egg. Oh, they are amazing. Congratulations. Because so you guys have have How many chickens? What's the deal? What you guys do?
Speaker 1: We have a very manageable four chicken coop and
Speaker 2: cute 11 chicken per family member?
Speaker 1: Yes, no and cute is the right word for you. Like when I say chicken coop conjures a certain image, probably in people's minds.
Speaker 1: Pooja and I inherited a little coupe from some friends that were moving out of town, and it was this adorable little It looks like a little cottage. I mean, it even has like like a little planter box for flowers outside the windows, and we whitewashed it. We painted it white, but it it doesn't look like what you would imagine. A chicken coop that look like it looks like something out of a Children's book where you have, like these happy red hens inside this little white cottage thing anyway, it's adorable. I love it. I love it. I love it. And it is. It's so much fun to go out in the morning with the girls and we, you know, look in the hay and get the eggs, and it's reminding me a lot of doing that with mud and Poppy. Back when we were little kids,
Speaker 2: that was definitely a favorite. Task was to go out to the chicken coop and get the eggs for breakfast or for whatever mud needed them, for which was probably a lot of dinner stuff, too. Um, but that's really cool. That's nice nostalgia and just a really fun thing to do with kids. I have, um, some people who I take care of their house when they go away, take care of their dogs, and they also have, like, six or seven chickens. And I have had some adventures with the chickens. I've
Speaker 1: been thinking about your chicken stories as we've done this, and in some ways it's been a cautionary tale. And in other ways I've said this is so doable. We can we can manage
Speaker 2: chicken like chickens get stuck in places you don't think chickens can get stuck, okay? And like I don't know how they get back out. Chickens can also freeze and look really still and dead, which was like gonna be really unnerve ing like and they also just They could be angry and packin. Sonny loves the chickens. Let me just tell you Sunny is all about. He's a herding dogs. So he is, like all about rounding up the chickens house
Speaker 1: Roger doing with the chicken. The chicken's have Roger by several pounds each. Eso Roger could be as excited as he wants, but the chickens will keep him in line, and so far he's shown actually very little interest, which is is nice.
Speaker 2: That is fascinating. You guys gotta understand every time anybody drives up to the house like Roger will. Sometimes you'll you'll like, look out into the driveway. And there's a standoff between this tiny toy Bootle and a giant like plow, or like a huge like town truck, like he could smell here through through the
Speaker 1: window of a car or truck cab. He knows if he can win
Speaker 2: fear, and it's just too funny.
Speaker 1: The neighbors that know him just sort of keep a steady pace, and he's fine, he clears. But if you if he gets a newcomer, yeah, no, he'll he'll see if he could bring them to a standstill
Speaker 2: s. But the chickens will not be cowed like this. Yeah, well, that is delightful. I am very excited for you. I'm very excited for me, and I'm excited to see the chickens get names. Also naming the chickens I find to be important.
Speaker 1: Right now, we have too many names and not the enough ability to differentiate
Speaker 2: between the chickens. Yeah, I could do him like two
Speaker 1: and two. There's like the speckled too. And the red, too. But it Z,
Speaker 2: you can't differentiate within the categories yet. No. Um, well, I'm excited to hear the names when they do come. But you guys also celebrated a birthday way did.
Speaker 1: I can't believe it, but Aria turned one year old a few days ago and e mean, like, set your watch by it. She was practicing her first steps about a week beforehand. A couple days beforehand, she was sort of haltingly letting go of things and starting to push across those open spaces and rooms. And now here we are, a week later, and
Speaker 1: it felt important to tell everybody about Aria walking because all of a sudden she's a bold new personality in my life. She's been there, but she's so engaged at this time. She's starting toe like fetch things and bring them to you. And sometimes she interacting more with Exactly. Sometimes she wants to come and engage. Sometimes she wants to escape and get away, and they're really clear differences. It's not just like, Oh, there's Aria,
Speaker 2: that's awesome. That's really, really awesome. Well, it sounds like life on the life on the Hill is going pretty good right now, despite circumstances all around
Speaker 1: the day that I could send Dinitia an aria to get the eggs in the morning and I see them like toddle off, holding hands with a little basket. I will. I'll be sure to give it update.
Speaker 2: Oh, guys, it's really true. His life really is like this. With that. Do you think that we should maybe
Speaker 1: help some people who have etiquette dilemmas? Let's get to some questions. I like it. Awesome. Etiquette is here to answer your questions. You can email them toe awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com. Leave a voicemail or text at 802858 k i n d. That's 8028585463 or reach us on social media on Twitter. We're at Emily Post
Speaker 2: instead on Instagram were at Emily Post Institute and on Facebook were awesome etiquette. Just use the hashtag awesome etiquette with your social media posts, so we know
Speaker 1: you want your question on the show.
Speaker 1: Our first question this week is titled Walk Without Worry.
Speaker 1: Dear Lizzie and Dan. I really enjoy the awesome etiquette podcast and have founded a wonderful companion on my many covert walks. I need some ideas on how to best approach my our close friends. Both my husband and me and a close couple of friends are recent empty nesters with 20 something year old Children. When our kids were younger, we did many activities as families but also made time for adult on Lee Time. Since our kids have been out of the house for college, graduate school and jobs, our relationship is now mostly adult time due to co vid our friends, Children's air all back in the nest, and they are wonderful and delightful young adults. The challenge is now when I invite my friend for a socially distanced walk or other activity, she asks if one or more of her kids conjoined us also husband, and I wonder if it's rude to invite just our couple friends over now for socially distanced patio gatherings that do not include their adult Children.
Speaker 1: Please understand that it is not that I don't like the company of their Children, I really do. And we do make space for some family time. But I also really like time alone with my friend and time alone as couples. The reality is multiple people change the dynamic, and I have missed the deeper connection points of one on one or two on two.
Speaker 1: Am
Speaker 2: I being
Speaker 1: selfish? It is apparent their kids could be with them for some time. Meanwhile, our kids have returned to their homes in their own lives. Please help me navigate as I value our friends and their Children. Thanks. Unsure friend.
Speaker 2: Oh, I'm sure, friend. It can feel guilty to want, like one on one moments with friends or adult Onley moments with friends who have kids. And I know both of you have kids but their their kids air, you know, getting in the way in this case, and I think that it's not bad of you to want to want this. I wouldn't call it selfish, but I would think about balancing it. I think it's fine when you make the invitation to do the walk or to have folks come over for socially distanced backyard, you know, dinner or afternoon or, you know, just time together. Um, if you say I'd really like to invite you, know, you or you and Jim. And if they pop up and say, Are the kids invited to say, You know, I think we'd like I'd like to keep it small this time or I was hoping the walk could be just the two of us today. And I think it's fine every now and again to say something like that. You know, I'd rather it just be the two of us today or oh, I was hoping. I think that's for me the word hoping rather than rather it's like those little tweaks and differences and how you present it and the casualness or the ease of just saying, you know, like Oh, I was kinda hoping it would just be yesterday. Do you mind if we might the kids another time? I think that would be my way of doing it. I will also say this is the way I do it. There are times where I do ask friends who have kids. Hey, do you think we could do a new adult? Only hang out? And quite frankly, most of the time they're like, Thank you. Oh, thank you so much. Yes, like let's figure out a way to do a baby sitter. I'll get my husband or boyfriend or whoever toe take care of the kids. And it's It's nice, Dan. What? What say you, father of Children? I'm
Speaker 1: imagining those kids a little bit Like Arias, sometimes wanting attention and wanting to escape, might enjoy a little bit of alone time. Also. Oh, the house to themselves. When Mom and Dad
Speaker 2: are out,
Speaker 2: I know I always did. It was like awesome when Mom and Dad were invited someplace without me. Free right. It's almost
Speaker 1: hard to remember that because right now I feel like so many people are so hungry for human connection attention, time with each other, that remembering that actually there's some real value to that alone. Time is important. I know that's not the topic for this question. I agree with you 1000% that the invitation is the place to set the parameters, and I like the two options that you gave the option of
Speaker 1: making the invitation and having a ready response that you would like it to be just them if they asked to bring their kid. But if they don't and I say kid, grown up child,
Speaker 1: if
Speaker 1: that isn't the nature of the exchange, I also like that option that you don't need to wait for them to ask to deny it. You can also say something, and I like your focus on positive language. I was so hoping to really get some quality one on one time with you. When's a good time this week for us to have that walk? And it's okay to even say that to make that part of the first explicit invitation and that hoping to spend time with you emphasizing the things that you get out of the relationship with that person when you have that one on one opportunity is the way to just wrap this thing in all the positivity that's gonna help someone receive it really well
Speaker 2: and unsure. Friend, we hope this gives you a confidence navigating this slightly delicate invitation
Speaker 2: All day. Things have been going better for Joey. He's still smiling and talking to people, finding good things
Speaker 1: about people and telling them about the good things
Speaker 1: it works. Look,
Speaker 2: Barney and Betty are waiting to walk home with
Speaker 1: Joey.
Speaker 1: That's good. Going home isn't going to be lonely this time.
Speaker 1: Our next question is about a messy married name.
Speaker 2: Hello, I recently got engaged. I'm trying to figure out how to refer to my fiancee when she becomes my wife. When marrying her first husband, she moved her maiden name to her middle name and took his surname. This persisted after her divorce. She's got two kids from that marriage, is a sole proprietor of an art business in that name and is an elementary school teacher. So changing her name felt difficult and still does. When we get married, she's decided she wants to keep her name as is, and I'm fine with that, apart from it, feeling odd, thinking about referring to her as Mrs Ex husband's name?
Speaker 2: Is this something I just need to get over and move on from? Is there some convention for using Mrs otherwise? And I honestly, I can't tell if this is cheeky, like Mrs otherwise is. And that's the name or mrs another way. Just a word in another way. Yeah. Okay, so I'm having a hard time figuring out what's and then in parentheses, Normal in this scenario. Anonymous. Anonymous. This is
Speaker 1: such a tricky question. I really appreciate your submitting it. The
Speaker 1: big picture etiquette concept whenever we're thinking about what to call people or how to address people is
Speaker 1: oftentimes very clarifying and illuminating. That's what you call people what they would like to be called. So the person who is most important to check in with about this is your fiance. And it sounds like you understand her feelings about this pretty well that she, for a number of reasons, personal and professional, in her, uh, family life, her relationship with her kids and her professional life the way she has named her business. This name is significant for her, and she intends to keep using it.
Speaker 1: So the big point of etiquette is that you honor your wife by calling her what she wants to be called, and from there we can talk about the potential confusion and
Speaker 1: the decisions that she makes
Speaker 1: and how that impacts you when you talk about it and you
Speaker 1: say her name. There is a potential for some confusion using the missus title with a previous married name and that it's going to create an impression for some people that that's the person she's married. Thio. And I think being prepared to talk about that and have a really quick ready answer if that confusion emerges is the sort of the second step etiquette advice that I would give because you're definitely gonna want to be able to clear that up very quickly and easily, and that that shouldn't be too too difficult.
Speaker 2: I wonder if she has any desire to switch to being a Mrs A supposed to a Mrs, because it doesn't necessarily indicate you're not married. But it might help tone that down a bit. You know what I mean? Toned down the impression of Mrs Ex husband's name. Um, I'm going to toss one out there. Just a thought. Um, you know, she's keeping her her name and she's got it in her business. She's got it with her Children. She's got it, um, as a teacher and an established member of the community and y'all are joining and becoming a family.
Speaker 2: Maybe that's the family name. And I know that might sound crazy or just like way out there for you or, you know, or maybe it doesn't. But my question is, does it matter so much that it's his name if you adopted it and it became your family name together because that's also an option. I have a friend whose family did that, and it did feel unifying for them. They all they're all under her like a name under her family tree now. And so it was like an adopting of that family because they really were becoming a family. And there was already so much connected to that name that established so many members of that family and things that contribute to that family, like the business that it made sense to just become that family and own that name is your own. And then it's no longer Mr Ex husband's world. You know it's yours. It's like yours with these kids and with this woman that you love and that you're going to dedicate your life. Thio. So it's just a thought. Not everybody is comfortable doing that kind of stuff. But, you know, there's a lot of people are. A lot of women are asked to change their name regularly in that kind of way, and it's worth thinking about going the other direction to create that unity that I think you are seeking as an identifying social unit you know, well, as trying to identify socially as a family unit, Lizzie
Speaker 1: bows. That is certainly, and I'm going to use this in the way. It's not always used colloquially, but that is unorthodox. And I don't mean that to say it's I think it's crazy idea. I just mean it's unorthodox. It's not what you would hear or what a lot of people would think is about a potential solution, but fall squarely under that original etiquette parameter that I was talking about, that you honor people by calling them what they want to be called and identifying them the way they would like to be identified. There is something else that I was thinking about, sort of big picture thought similar to yours about this process that often happens where people change their names around getting married, and that's that sometimes it doesn't happen all at once that that marriage ceremony can be a really big deal, and it's a moment in time that,
Speaker 1: um, ceremonial ises and consecrates that commitment that people have with each other.
Speaker 1: But the relationships grow into that moment, and they continue growing after that moment. And a lot of women that I can think of in my personal life didn't feel comfortable making that a moment where they dropped a name and assumed a new name. But it kind of happened as a process over time and whether it's you taking a new name or her taking a new name, the idea of letting that process breathe a little bit, letting it happen naturally and organically. There might be really opportunities in life where the business transitions in some way, and a name change with a new name that you're starting to feel much more connected to, makes a lot of sense and is a decision that that is something someone arrives at on their own in a way that makes a lot of sense to them and and feels like a coherent, cohesive development of that identity is opposed to a real shift.
Speaker 2: I am also going to put this out there. That it's it is not uncommon for people to change their names when they do get married. Typically, this it is women who end up doing this. But I know she's worried about things like the students and the community at school that she's built in that sort of thing or not having the same last name as her kids. But that also does happen like it does. You know, I remember teachers getting married or getting married for a second time and their names changing and, you know, like people, people do change with you as you change And I think that's it's worth noting, even though it doesn't sound that this is where this is going to go. I think she sounds pretty firm in in keeping her name the way that it is, You know, for those out there wondering, well, is it a big deal to worry about changing your name? When you're that established and it's like it depends. It's I think it's a really personal choice, but people have made that change and then moved forward. Anonymous. This is
Speaker 1: such an excellent etiquette question. It's taken us in a lot of different directions. There are very specific etiquette expectations, sort of traditional etiquette expectations that are at play here. But there are also some really big picture ideas, and some of those ideas about identity and how we name ourselves are changing. And I will definitely be curious to see how this new normal emerges and appreciate your helping us keep up with.
Speaker 1: Our
Speaker 2: next question is titled Weary About a Wedding, and we promise that it is different from our previous
Speaker 1: co vid wedding topics.
Speaker 1: Dear Dan and Lizzie. I received a save the date several months ago for a wedding this upcoming fall. Since then, the Cove in 19 Crisis hit. The couple still plans to host the wedding and has reached out to their guest list to gauge who has made plans to attend or not. As of yet because of some health concerns that I have, I do not plan to attend and have responded with my plans. My question is, this am I obligated to send a gift? I haven't received an official invitation, and since I responded to them that I wouldn't be attending, I don't expect Thio does receiving a safe the date, but potentially no invitation. Obligate me to send a gift. Also, if I do end up receiving an invitation Should I still R s v p? No. I've been told by the couple that they completely understand the reason I'm not attending, but I don't want to potentially disappoint or hurt them twice by saying no again. As an aside, I do plan to send a gift whether I receive an invitation or not. Because I love these people. I think that they were very smart to reach out in the way that they did. And I'm sorry to not be able to attend because of the health concerns I'm or just wondering what protocol would be with this particular order of events. Thanks for any guidance. Anonymous.
Speaker 2: Anonymous. I think this is this. This is one of those spaces that can feel complicated and is we could make it really, really simple because they're kind of doing this like pre testing with the Save the Date which some couples do. And some couples don't some just send it. Send those invitations, no matter what. Hoping, You know, maybe things have changed. They really would like you to come if you can, that sort of thing. Other couples really do use, like any knows that come in super early. Oh, we really won't be able to attend. It's our family reunion that weekend as helping mechanism to get them to be able to invite other people that they couldn't otherwise invite. So it's it's a little bit dependent on the couple, but I think that you're in the zone of, you know, you can't go to the wedding. You know, you'd like to send a gift, So just send the gift because you want to celebrate the couple. There's nothing wrong with doing that whatsoever When it comes to obligation, though I don't necessarily think you're obligated. We've never had this rule that has saved the date that you then mentioned. Hey, I actually really can't make it to this wedding for that sort of. You don't r s v p to save the date, So it sounds weird to say that you, like, declined with an R S V p to save the date. That's kind of what happens.
Speaker 2: But I the save the date isn't the thing that that makes you, but you kind of invited to the wedding. If you're receiving to say the date I don't know, Dan, what do you think? Where you at? You can clearly see I'm like, I don't Yeah, no obligated. Obligated? I don't think so. I'm gonna consult
Speaker 1: the etiquette literature on this one. I'm gonna take a look.
Speaker 2: Breaking out books
Speaker 1: exactly past arbitrations And what judicial rulings and say that No, you are not obligated. A save the date does not carry that obligation. You need to be officially invited to the wedding. Having said all of that
Speaker 1: obligation is a word that we have really worked on this show to remove from the whole idea of wedding present as as an obligation that it's it's an opportunity. And the
Speaker 1: let's say the richness of that opportunity sort of comes to its fullest force when you've been invited to a wedding because it is a it is a perfect chance to fulfill a social obligation and respond with a present or a gift, whether you plan to attend or not. Tell that couple how much you care about them, appreciate them, and are thinking of them at this important time in their life. And that is everything that I hear in your approach to this question.
Speaker 1: But in terms of the legalese on it, I think that really that that feeling of obligation gets to the point where I would say do it no matter what
Speaker 1: when you received that invitation and when you're in this sort of liminal space before that happens where you're anticipating that invitation, but it hasn't actually arrived. I think you can anticipate feeling that obligation, but it hasn't actually arrived
Speaker 2: anonymous. We hope this answer helps, and we hope that the couple has a fantastic wedding. How do you go about, he thought, What you doing every time I try only make things worse?
Speaker 2: Is there something particular method of being thoughtful that works every time?
Speaker 2: This next question is titled Family Feud. Help. My daughter and I are at an impasse. She has an issue with my brother's wife. She has literally ignored or not attended a family event for the last seven years of my sister in law would be there. Now my daughter is getting married. My husband and I are paying the bulk of the expenses. I think it would be a bad thing not to invite my only brother and his wife. My daughter says this is her day, and having that woman there will ruin her day
Speaker 2: thoughts. I fear that not inviting will seriously hurt my brother and my relationship. Thank you, Carleen.
Speaker 1: Carlene, Thank you for submitting this question, even though the topic is really difficult. And
Speaker 1: the reality is that some etiquette questions air about conforming in small ways that make people feel good. And other etiquette questions are potentially much more serious in terms of how they affect relationships. And I definitely put this question in that category, absolutely. As I'm thinking about how toe answer it. Well, I'm running into an impasse, which is that I don't fully understand based on the question what your daughter's particular issues are with her aunt,
Speaker 1: and to me, that would
Speaker 1: really impact the choice that you would make if there is an issue that's a personality conflict kind of issue. I think that I would slam my advice in the direction of having a conversation with your daughter about the way things like this impact families for years and years, and the impact that it might have on other relationships in the family and that while you respect her choice as someone that's co hosting, you want to have a bigger discussion about it and about all of the potential implications. And you'd want to figure out a way to reach some accord between you and your daughter around this decision where you're not in full agreement.
Speaker 1: Mhm.
Speaker 2: I feel like that's the one where you can kind of say, like, like, listen like rather than telling her she should do it this way, you kind of present it in that way of this could have could have long term consequences. And as your mom, I want to talk with you about that so that you have the time to think about it and make sure that, you know, having taken that time, it's really the decision that that you would want and that you could live with knowing how many people it could impact. Andi, I think that that's, you know, you present it as as that kind of I'm just giving you time. I want you thio to really think about this one.
Speaker 1: Yeah, and you might even in that conversation bring to the table some ideas about things that you could do to run interference day of some sort of potential solutions that could help
Speaker 1: address some practical concerns about not wanting this person to ruin her day in some way or take her into a different kind of interaction or headspace than she would wanna be in on on that really important special day. And by acknowledging all of those things, you start to be part of the solution. You're not making demands. That is one conversation, but I I really want to leave the door open for an entire other conversation also, which is about what it is about her relationship with this woman. That makes this a clear black and white choice, and we just don't know what that is. Based on this question, there might be something going on here where it's really more appropriate for this woman not to be there. And if you can't issue an invitation to your brother, her husband, without including her and you really shouldn't, that means you're going to need to have a conversation with your brother about exactly why he and his wife are not being invited.
Speaker 2: Here's where I'm going to make a quick adjustment to that, though it might not be in exactly why, Right? It might be more of just saying that. Listen, in talking with my daughter,
Speaker 2: I have learned that she is so unfortunately, deeply upset about
Speaker 2: either something that happened or or something regarding,
Speaker 2: you know, and then the woman's name that it does need Thio be a day where, unfortunately, it would be better if you guys weren't there, That that would be the right way to support her on this day. And I am heartbroken over it because I would want you there. She loves you, You know what I mean? But this is deeper, and I can't speak for her on what it is. But I know that this means enough that I am trusting my mom instinct to support her in it. And I'm really hoping you're going to trust your family instinct to just understand that whatever this is, it's it's between the two of them, and that's what makes it hard, but that we love you that like we wish
Speaker 1: it were different. Lizzie, I like that sample script.
Speaker 2: Those are the kinds of ways you could balance that, you know, as best you can I mean, you're you're telling someone like Listen, there's big problems in our family and and we may not be ableto talk about it. Find out about it, expose it. We may just have to deal with the fact that it's there and because this is her day, I think you got a giver, the giver, the go ahead Thio to direct. It was, I like
Speaker 1: that. I like that sample script in particular. If I was the brother hearing that it would communicate to me that there's something really serious here and that I've gotto accept that and what's also being communicated is that my sister cares about me and our relationship, and those were the two messages you want to be able to deliver if that's the way you're going to go. I am thinking a lot in terms of how you would decide whether it's one conversation. The other conversation or someplace in the middle that we haven't talked about yet, really requires you and your daughter having a conversation where you can reach a basic understanding where she has an opportunity to communicate to you how serious her issues with her aunt are, where they come from If she's willing to share that with you or how it might impact her in a way so that you're equipped to have information toe have those discussions with your brother whatever way this goes. And that's something that I do think I don't want to say you're owed it, but it makes sense for that conversation toe happen with you as a co host planning a wedding with so many people connected to it and such strong feelings being involved and the fact that you are going to be responsible at some point for
Speaker 1: communicating with some of the people that are impacted by this decision s. So I think it's reasonable for you to interrogate that choice a little bit. And by interrogated, I mean investigated, um, with your daughter. And that could be a tricky conversation. I would be prepared toe listen and ask questions and to treat your daughter with a lot of respect to kind of draw out from her. What's going on here that requires this kind of serious not inviting of close family to a wedding?
Speaker 2: Carlene, we are sorry that you're dealing with this during a time that is about such a joyous occasion, but we really hope that some candid conversations and using some sensitive and gentle language will help you get through this as a family together.
Speaker 1: Do you think manners really start with consideration for others? Do you think boys need manners as much as girls do? There's a lot to think and talk about on the subject of manners and many good reasons to ask our manners. Important.
Speaker 1: Thank you for your questions. Please send us updates or feedback on our answers. Toe awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com. You can leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 kind That's 8028585463 You can also reach us on social media on Twitter. We're at Emily Post. Install Instagram. We're at Emily Post Institute and on Facebook were awesome etiquette. Just remember to use the hashtag awesome etiquette with your post so that we know you want your question on the show.
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Speaker 2: It's
Speaker 1: time for our feedback segment where we hear from you about the questions we answer in the topics we cover. And
Speaker 2: today we
Speaker 1: hear from Betsy about Episode 300 the postscript segment. We are listening
Speaker 2: Dear Lizzie and Dan, Thank you so much for your post script segment. We're listening, and especially for your conversation guidelines. I was wondering how you might address this issue, and I was moved to tears by your wise and forthright words. What a beautiful illustration of the power of core etiquette principles to guide us even during the most difficult times. As we all begin to address the tragic legacy of systemic racism, I appreciate the perspective that listening isn't just an essential conversation skill. It's also a powerful way to demonstrate our respect and our desire to learn.
Speaker 2: I've been meaning to become a sustaining member for some time now. Because of this post script segment, I followed through on that intention. Love you guys, and then we have a black heart in a dove. Emoji, Betsy,
Speaker 1: Betsy, Thank you so much for that feedback. We really appreciate it.
Speaker 2: And thank you, too, for becoming a sustaining member. We also really appreciate that, indeed.
Speaker 2: And now we hear from an about episode 2 98 and the question about a mouthy mother in law working
Speaker 1: in addiction medicine. My ears perked up when Kate asked about how to deal with her mother in law's unkind comments made while her mother in law is intoxicated. This is not about how to stop or interrupt unkind comments. Her mother in law clearly thinks highly of her, as evidenced by the nice thing she says when not intoxicated. Sounds to me like her mother in law has an alcohol use disorder and needs treatment for it. Kate should not expect to be able to influence her mother in law's actions while intoxicated, and she should work on learning how to deal with someone with alcohol use disorder. Her mother in law won't change until she's able to stop drinking. Good etiquette will not fix this unfortunate but not unfixable situation The difficulty is that the fix is all up to the mother in law and not something that can be done by her family members. Good luck, Kate. You are not alone in your experiences, and
Speaker 2: and we really appreciate you addressing this, especially from the standpoint of not an etiquette fix. It was, in fact, something Dan had mentioned he was thinking about talking about but didn't really have the language. And being someone who works in addiction medicine, you do, and we really appreciate you writing in with this feedback. There are times when it's really important to recognize when change isn't possible when it's coming from outside. And that is something that you know in all of our interactions. At some point, we do have to take that into account, and sometimes you do have to surrender to the fact that no amount of being nice. No amount of talking to this person about this might end up changing this behavior if it is hinging upon this other element, and in this case it's alcohol. And thank you again so much for writing in with us. Thank you
Speaker 1: so much for sending us your thoughts and updates Please do keep them coming. We learn so much from your feedback. You can send your next feedback update or follow up to awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com. You can also leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 kind. That's 8028585463
Speaker 2: It's time for our post script segment, where we dive deeper into a topic of etiquette. And this week we're talking about backyard barbecue etiquette with the co vid twist.
Speaker 2: So this is such
Speaker 1: a classic summer etiquette content. Fourth of July weekend is bearing down on us. And if you're not thinking about grilling and hot dogs and hamburgers and parks and pools, I understand we are in the middle of a global pandemic, and sometimes that can be. It can just interrupt everything. This happens to be one of those traditions that there is still a way to engage with, and we're hearing Mawr and Mawr and Maura about picnics and barbecues and outside get togethers and gathering. So we thought we'd revisit some of our classic summer barbecue etiquette with just a
Speaker 2: little hint
Speaker 1: of a covert twist and toe also just ground ourselves firmly in summertime etiquette. We also want to talk about eating corn on the cob, so we're gonna get into the We're gonna get into table manners a little bit today. Also,
Speaker 2: I feel like that's such a good addition to any backyard barbecue like that. Just it has to be. There is the corn on the cob advice. It's its
Speaker 1: own kind of table manners, right
Speaker 2: knee high by the Fourth of July. So because if we're thinking
Speaker 1: about an outdoor barbecue, where does it all start? Or just let's let's call it a backyard picnic or get together
Speaker 2: starts with inviting. Just like anything you've got to figure out. You know who's coming. How are you going to issue those invitations? And often barbecues are, you know, potluck type events. So you've already when you make that invitation, you wanna have an idea of if you're gonna be asking guests to bring anything which most people are, that's one of our cove. It twists, and then how you do that so that people are bringing things that they feel comfortable and confident bringing, or that they understand everything that they have to bring So like we said, the cove it twist on, that is number one with your guest list. You do have to think about restrictions and whether you're in a state where it's 10 people, 25 people or if there's no restrictions you do really want to think about. I think people's level of concern. And I do think that it's thoughtful to try to gather people who kind of feel on the same page for what they would be comfortable with. And I think the way that you do that as a host is you say, You know, Hey, I was hoping to throw a barbecue this weekend. This is how I'm looking to do it. It would be outside on Lee or one at a time in the house to use the restroom and wiping down surfaces when you're in there, you know, whatever it is, you kind of explain what your level of hosting is gonna be in regards to keeping people safe and then let people choose whether that's gonna work for them. So you might start out with a bigger guest list and it might narrow down if people like, yeah, you know, it's not not feeling comfortable. We we were away last week, so we're all quarantining this week. You know you'll get a mixed bag of answers, but I do think that's that's one thing to consider and then the with the inviting. The other thing to consider. And Dan, you have experience in this is Are you providing things for people when it comes to food? And how are you doing that safely? Or are you just asking people to bring everything that they would need? And the grill is open for people Thio share using the grill one at a time. Dan, you kind of describe something like that for us. Yeah, No, we
Speaker 1: dio. I've done different versions of of all of these, and sometimes it's a picnic gathering than everybody brings a picnic basket with all their own food contained. And you can all lay out your blankets and stay 6 ft apart. And there's no worry about passing things back and forth or working from a communal area could be a really nice format for a get together. That's really low impact on the hosts and gives everyone a lot of control over their own space and comfort I've seen versions where people are concerned about food coming out of, ah sort of kitchen or a house or the shared nature of food that's prepared for a number of different people. So they go to take out root and you'll you'll get, you know, three or four pizzas and each family will have its own pizza, or each cluster will have its own pizza. You can do that thing where you're you're still sharing food. They're still in order that goes in together, but everybody's got their own space to operate.
Speaker 2: Sort of. Yeah, I've
Speaker 1: done barbecues where the meat on the grill was shared where the host had a had a barbecue on a porch post. I'll expose him. This will be my brother will, and he's got, you know, a spatula where he's turning burgers and sausages and we'll put him on a plate. But then everybody brought their own condiments and fixings, so there was, Ah, a pretty simple, easy to keep apart cooking of the food. But everybody had a lot of a lot of room to organize that other stuff on their own,
Speaker 2: so be prepared. When you do, you're inviting to be thinking a little bit further ahead than you might typically and really explain to people what the experience is going to be like and trust that it's not personal if they're not calling you bad. If your version of a co vid backyard barbecue doesn't line up with what they're comfortable with, don't let that ruin a friendship or sour of friendship. But I think that inviting is something that it's going to be a little bit more explaining how you're gonna handle things safely and that that should be expected at this time. Once you've done the inviting and you know who's coming, it's time to prep, isn't it?
Speaker 2: Yeah, yeah, he says. As if this isn't Dan Post settings favorite part of the process? Well, no. And I'm thinking to myself, I just want to get all
Speaker 1: that inviting done and get my covert boundaries established so that we can enjoy a barbecue. And to that end, we don't want to go through every detail. But we will include with the links for this show, a link to an advice article about backyard barbecues on our site. That's essentially a checklist of things to get to prepare yourself it will remind you that you're going to need some lighter fuel or some kind of fuel for your grill, that you're gonna need a cooler in a trash can. It's a good checklist. We won't go through every item on it. Of course, there are some items on the prep list that we will add this summer. You're gonna want to include a little extra space if you need to be able to lay things out where people can get to them without getting so close to each other. So you just might need some or surfaces and extra table or to position strategically might
Speaker 2: not use the entire picnic table, but Onley one end and then the other end so that people can be distanced but still accessing things
Speaker 1: exactly a few extra. And I don't want to say disposable what's called them compostable. But single use plates, forks, spoons, knives, glasses might make everybody's life a lot easier, so having some extras of those is advisable. Definitely worth considering.
Speaker 2: I'm thinking signage in the bathroom just to remind people if they are going into use to use the bathroom of little things like wiping down surfaces and and that kind of stuff, something
Speaker 1: else that I found very handy. And I know it's not technically a prep item, but it is for people that listen to this show on a regular basis. Have a sample script. That's how you can reintroduce some social distancing. And there's something that I've been wanting to bring up on this show. It's something I've told Lizzie about it. It's our shorthand up on Paul under Road on Cross that Hill in Vermont when we're doing social distance and get togethers, even with my parents, and that's the Corona Mu I want to teach everybody the Corona Mu talking about. Okay, so the Corona mu references that a full grown dairy cow is about 6 ft long and
Speaker 2: got if someone starts Vermont coronavirus people a little
Speaker 1: closer than about a head to tail distance on a dairy cow, you could give him a Corona mu, and it's a way to just remind somebody who move,
Speaker 2: move gone back. It's our little
Speaker 1: Vermont shorthand to sort of introduced the concept of a physical distance, and it's like my mother will do it to me initial. Do it to her grandfather, Pooja will say it if she starts to see the kids drifting too close. It's like, Anyway, it's a light touch way for us to remind each other. And I think having a little script like that
Speaker 1: use the Corona Mu if you want or come up with your own. If you come up with your own, we'd love to hear him.
Speaker 2: I think two is a host. It's also it is okay for you to just kind of that. Some point say, Hey, guys, I think we've slipped a little bit. We should probably remember, you know, to keep a little bit more distance or to not share food or whatever it is that you might be slipping on. And I think that that's also perfectly acceptable. It's what you don't want to do is have the meltdown because you've been getting so stressed, seeing some slippage happen, you know, and and that it's out of your control, that it that it starts to overwhelm you and tap into those big anxieties and that sort of thing. And so if you're starting to feel like things aren't aren't feeling safer, they're not going, okay, it's really okay for you. As the host to make like that nice, polite, friendly request or reminder at that point, Don't feel like you have to wait forever. If people are sort of breaking social protocol here, the social distancing protocol here, like within the 1st 15 minutes of your party, it's okay to say something. Ah, final
Speaker 1: prep item that was not on our list previously. And I'm starting to think of as part of having a well prepared home is some extra masks and in the same way that if you're gonna ask someone to remove their shoes if they enter your home, we say,
Speaker 2: Hey, think about getting some
Speaker 1: little disposable slippers or sandals that you could offer someone if they really weren't comfortable. But that was a firm line for you in the same way. If you're going to strongly suggest and courage or even require mask wearing at your home for different kinds of encounters, the idea of keeping a few clean, maybe new, fresh in a couple different sizes, masks available toe give to your guests are offered to your guests, I think is a really good idea.
Speaker 2: I think it's also a really great idea because we're talking about a backyard barbecue. Weather is an issue. And if you happen to have a flash storm come in or something like that, Um, and people did need to get inside the house. And all of a sudden you're in a situation now where you've got 10 or 15 people in a confined space. I mean, obviously we say, put on fans open windows, but that gives you a chance to say, Here, everybody take a fresh mask, especially if you don't didn't bring yours with you. You know, I have have clean ones you can keep, you know, the medical disposable ones. Whichever I think that that's something as a host, that's that's thoughtful and being prepared and also being willing to call it and say, Okay, parties probably over. This is probably too many people in a small space. Or we could move half of us into the garage. You know, I have
Speaker 1: my garage overflow space already. I wasn't going to suggest it on this post script,
Speaker 2: but since it came up
Speaker 2: right, Right, um, one of the other things that's probably not on most host minds, typically during this time, but is a little different is that I kind of think of it as
Speaker 2: very Granny Pat, like my grandmother, who was really just an entertaining guru. She, uh, on the other side of my family. She kept this journal of all of her parties and things like that, and it said, Who came she served and when the party was Everything is really, really cool. But I'm thinking about how useful something like that is if contact tracing becomes an issue. And so it's not that you need to take down your friend's email addresses, you already have them. But it is. Remember, choosing to remember or make note of who came. How long were they there? What day was the party on? That way, if a contact tracer calls, um, you could say, Oh, yeah, we were here. We did have flash storm in the middle of it. Everyone was inside for 20 minutes, and then they went back outside, you know, or whatever it is, you can help with that by at least kind of taking note, knowing who was gathering in your space at your place.
Speaker 1: Lizzie Post. I love that idea, and mostly because I
Speaker 1: I am a I'm jealous of your grandmother. I
Speaker 2: think she's I think she's a really cool lady. Sounded. So thank you
Speaker 1: for everyone out there. This is Lizzie's grandmother on her mother's side s. Oh,
Speaker 2: yeah, we'll share her. Don't worry. Because, you know, you gave a teaser at the start. So you gotta tell us before this postscript segment raps. How do we eat corn on the cob? Politely.
Speaker 2: You get to eat it with your
Speaker 1: hands. It's finger food. It's one of the things that I like so much about. Corn on the Cob is picturing Emily Post eating it herself. And the thing about eating corn on the cob that I want to share with our audience is that in the post family, we re roll the corn on a
Speaker 2: stick of butter. We get a stick of butter specifically to roll the corn on. When
Speaker 1: Puka first saw this, she just couldn't believe it. She's like you roll. Ah, Hot year of corn on the cob in butter said Yes,
Speaker 2: I hate it. Yeah, Sometimes you add salt pepper,
Speaker 1: but I will also budget. I learned a corn on the cob recipe from her family that became such a favorite. I started keeping chili and salt because I learned that my 1st 4th of July barbecue with the Guptas toe rub that year of corn on the cob with a half a lime and then Sprinkle it with chili and salt. Unbelievable. So
Speaker 2: s so that's that's the one I like the best. Over the years I stopped loving butter on my corn. I started really just liking the fresh, sweet taste of the corn and getting the corn from the C S A here in Burlington, um, at the Intervale community farm is just It's so sweet and it's so good. I can't It's like thio. At this point, I'm just like, no, be natural. Be free
Speaker 1: girl, Don't mess, Don't mess it up.
Speaker 1: The point being of all those condiments that oftentimes this is a messy affair, this is can be a sticky finger affair. Um, it could be a messy face affair, So it is finger food. It's okay to pick it up with your hands, But get yourself a couple napkins because they're gonna be your friend. They're gonna come in handy.
Speaker 1: Um, if you are using a shared condiment like the butter or the same lime, then you Onley butter or lime your corn at that start before it goes into your face. And then once it's been in your face, you don't use those shared condiments again. So very important right now. Use it and then that's your That's your commitment, your in.
Speaker 2: My guess is that if you're wanting to give people butter to roll in, that we're doing like individual chunks of butter for people right now, we're not doing that big shame
Speaker 1: or likely, and you can take a pad of butter onto your plate and then use your knife. And then you can apply that butter or
Speaker 2: roll it on your plate from the large pat. You could do that, too,
Speaker 1: in terms of eating the corn. You wanna take breaks between bites, so your face and that your corn or not, a typewriter that never separate. But you can't eat a couple bites, and then the corn can move away from your face. You can chew and swallow and then return to it. It can be so good that you want to just keep attacking, and the etiquette advice is to give yourself a moment to chew, swallow and breathe.
Speaker 2: Here's the two big ones. What do you do when your corn sprays on other people? And to what do you do when you've got corn stuck in your teeth?
Speaker 1: Apologize. Try to eat in a
Speaker 2: way that it doesn't happen again. Good answer.
Speaker 1: Corn in the teeth. I'm gonna go barbecue manners and say Maybe, like right in the moment you could cover with the napkin and clean a little bit right in the moment because
Speaker 2: it's just so you all know I am sure. Damn. Post setting just goes straight for it with the fingers when he's just around his family and it's no big deal. Okay,
Speaker 1: I'm calling it barbecue manners. And yes, I probably would. And Theo? Official etiquette answer is obviously you excuse yourself before you do things like clean your teeth. So,
Speaker 2: yes, absolutely. Take it to the restroom if you need to, or at least turn away from the table for a minute. And it's also a great reason to have toothpicks available for people.
Speaker 1: Oh, I like that. The one question I can't answer for you is whether you eat horizontally or around the ear of corn. I will tell you that if I watch someone eat around. I think it's a little strange, but that is entirely me. There is no larger etiquette concept that says you can't eat around or across.
Speaker 2: You know, these are the important things that we solve here on awesome etiquette. Dan, thank you so much for deep diving into corn audience. Thank you for deep diving into covert backyard barbecues with you. We hope that you all are able to get out and spend some time with friends and family in very safe ways.
Speaker 2: We like to
Speaker 1: 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 have a salute from David about our show. So hey, Lizzie and Dan, Congratulations on your 3/100 episode as a sustaining member and listener since dinner party download days, I can tell you my absolute favorite thing about your show.
Speaker 1: It's the besides the great job you do. It's the wonderful community of people out there all over the world who stay in contact with you, looking for ways in which they can be better with their fellow human beings and sometimes pets, too. But anyway, everybody together in this community is
Speaker 1: seems like a great person who really, really cares about others. And it's just wonderful to have that reinforced every week, wishing you and your families all well and looking forward to the next 300.
Speaker 2: Thank you so much. It really does feel like that to us, especially when we read everyone's responses. Um, it feels like we do. We have a really good community here. We don't We don't get a lot of nasty etiquette questions like Like there's there's just not a lot of kind of like the knee stuff in here and you hear it every now and again on the show but like not
Speaker 2: not very much of it at all. And it's a pretty impressive group of people who listen, I think so. We're very grateful to you and thank thank you for the salute.
Speaker 1: Oh
Speaker 1: on. Thank you for listening and thank you to everyone who sent us something and thank you to everyone who supports us on patryan. Please connect with us and share the show with friends, family and co workers However, you like to share podcasts, you can send us your next question feedback or salute Awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com. You can reach us by phone, he a message or text at 802858 kind That's 8028585463 on Twitter We're at Emily Post Inst on instagram were at Emily Post Institute and on Facebook Were Awesome Etiquette and the Emily Post Institute. Please do consider becoming a sustaining member. You can find out more about this by visiting patryan dot com slash awesome etiquette. You can also subscribe to the ads version of our show on Spotify or your favorite podcast app, and please consider leaving us a review. It helps with our show ranking, which helps new people find awesome etiquette. Our show is edited by Chris Albertine, an assistant produced by Brigitte
Speaker 2: Thanks Kris and Brigitte