Episode 313 - Stationery Surnames
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 differing opinions over thank-yous, what’s appropriate to ask of inexperienced hosts, a drive through baby shower, and the surnames on your stationery. For Awesome Etiquette Sustaining members our question is about inviting the parents of those in your bridal party. Plus your most excellent feedback, etiquette salute and special postscript reading from Margaret Visser's, Rituals of Dinner, on table talk.
Speaker 1: Maybe it's just that you don't know how you social
Speaker 1: watch, how busy host and damn posts actors hosting.
Speaker 1: They know that courtesy means showing respect, thinking of the other person. Really Friendliness.
Speaker 1: Hello
Speaker 2: and welcome toe awesome etiquette,
Speaker 1: where
Speaker 2: we explore
Speaker 1: modern it again through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty.
Speaker 2: On today's show, we take your questions on differing opinions over thank you's what's appropriate to ask of inexperienced hosts, a drive thru baby shower and the surnames on your family's stationary for
Speaker 1: awesome at it. Get sustaining members. Our question of the week is about inviting the parents of those in your bridal party to your wedding,
Speaker 2: plus your most excellent feedback etiquette salute and a postscript where we dive into the rituals of dinner by Margaret Visser and talk about table talk.
Speaker 1: All that coming
Speaker 2: up
Speaker 2: 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. I'm Lizzy Posts
Speaker 1: and I'm down post sending
Speaker 2: How's it going? It's good because you were workhorses past weekend. I was seeing stuff come through on email and go up, and I was I was It was fun. One fun watching your Saturday and something after I was doing some work as well. And I was like, Look at my cousin. Go! Yes,
Speaker 1: Well, I have Teoh derail our show just a little bit right at the start. I have a great big thank you Teoh issue and I need to make it a public thank you to some of our listeners. And it's a very specific subset of our listeners. This is a thank you for all CA and Kamal who are my in laws, their pooches, parents. And they're the reason you saw that work getting done this
Speaker 2: weekend, but I assume they weren't doing the work for you. But my guess is they might have helped out and giving you space to get work. I
Speaker 1: tell you, it felt like they were doing the work for me. It felt like they had just lifted me up. And they really had Pooja slept funny and had a crick in her neck. And I try not to laugh when I tell the story, but she couldn't turn her head side to side for a couple of days. It was that kind of a thing. So I'd walk into a room and I'd be like, Hey, Bhuj and she'd have to turn around. Face is,
Speaker 1: uh so she was functional, but, you know, operating at some percentage of her total physical capacity. And I had a really busy weekend ahead of me and she called her folks and they put on the back capes and jumped in their car and drove here and spent three nights with us and
Speaker 1: really helped watch the girls so that I could go to an office and focus and not feel like I was leaving Pooja in a tough
Speaker 2: situation.
Speaker 2: And it's easy to say Luck with the neck, honey up. Sorry, the baby's crying. Oh, go! Get in the guard like that's just not the kind of husband and dad you are.
Speaker 1: It's hard, it's not. And I was saying, Toe, Alka, anti com. Oh, you know, I know it was Pooja that called and asked for your help, but really you're You're here to help me, because usually she could turn well. She couldn't turn it all, but usually she would
Speaker 1: ask me toe help out if something like that was happening and I A
Speaker 1: I have a hard time saying no, but I really was a better weekend for me to spend focused on what I was. So thank you, Kummel and Alka. I really appreciate it and thank you. Awesome etiquette for being patient with me while I spend a little bit of our intro talking about it,
Speaker 2: It brings up a bigger etiquette point, which is sort of twofold. One is, is asking for favors, are asking for help, and the other is being grateful for the help. I guess you could, you know, you could put it through three different ways. It's it's how you choose Teoh to deal with that ask a swell is another aspect of it, but it is. It's It's interesting there times where it's really hard to ask family for help and to step in when we need it and other times where it's really easy. And I mean, I've seen how much my family has been helping each other through this, whether it's you know, my parents literally being extra helping hands for me with some projects around around my house, since we're all in a little pod together or it's been helping my sister out with daycare and taking care of their grandkids so that my sister and her husband can can focus on some things. You know, in this case, both those examples or family help, and we're kind of in little family bonds. But it is amazing when it comes and when you feel comfortable making the ask what a true relief it really is. If you can cultivate that kind of relationship, where the help feels good. My friend was over and she's a single mom of two. And she was talking about the parents that she kind of partnered with up during this pandemic so that they could each get to their respective jobs, you know, and her job is an outside of the home job, and so she really needs people. She can trust him, places for kids, feel safe being. And in her little neighborhood she was able to create that, and it's, you know, it's It's not always families. Sometimes it's it's the family we make or the neighborhood in the community around us. But it's sometimes it's the feeling. Okay, receiving it right,
Speaker 2: like feeling like Okay, I will that they will come and I will go down to the office and it's okay, this is the plan and then the feeling grateful for it. It's a good feeling at the end to feel grateful for people being able to step in and help. I certainly am really grateful whenever my parents, they're getting ready to come for a weekend, help things around the house, so I'm about to have that kind of assistance.
Speaker 1: But it will be to get home stuff done rather than works. Tifton. Well, I'm sure you will remember to thank them and knowing your parents
Speaker 2: finder, though
Speaker 1: I'm sure that they will be equally gracious and tell you, Oh, it's nothing and we just love doing it. And we're so glad that were able toe do something that's helpful and useful for you.
Speaker 2: I hope so. And I hope that all of you who are out there exchanging help are able to have such kind interactions around it.
Speaker 2: It certainly makes it something that we all I think lean, lean form or when we have good experiences with it. And etiquette can help that. No question, you know, etiquette can also
Speaker 1: be helpful with some listener questions.
Speaker 2: You think, Just look that is what
Speaker 1: the show is about. Let's get to it. Let's do it.
Speaker 1: Awesome Etiquette is here to answer your questions. You can email them toe awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com. You can leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 kind. That's 80 to 8585463 You can also reach us on social media on Twitter were at Emily Post hints on 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.
Speaker 2: Our first question is titled Thank you theatrics. We recently learned that our 30 year old daughter failed to send a thank you note to a long time family friend for their very generous financial gift that was sent to her for her graduation. My husband insisted our daughter call these friends, talk with them and give her thank you's by phone. Our daughter has known these friends for most of her life. When she made the call, the friends were not home, so she left a message asking them to return her call. Our daughter feels it is now the responsibility of the friends to return her calls so she can apologize to them. Our friends were hesitant to return. Our daughters call because they know why she is calling and feel it's our daughter's place to contact them. We also feel it is our daughters responsibility to reach out until she has made contact with, um, our friends air, not avoiding our daughter. We feel it's not their responsibility to contact someone who owes someone else a very heartfelt apology. Just a side note. Our son, 34 feels as his sister does. Please respond and thank you, Carol. Oh boy,
Speaker 2: this is
Speaker 1: definitely theatrical. There are
Speaker 2: theatrics and play here, he said. She said, Who's right? Who's right? Who's right? Tell us who's right. There's a
Speaker 1: generational divide. It seems like we got the kids on one side and the grown kids on one side and the parents on the other.
Speaker 1: I'm
Speaker 2: in the parents friends on the side of the parents do it seems like
Speaker 1: it does, although it sounds like they're appropriately circumspect about this, not avoiding the daughter. But clearly there's a dialogue going on between the parents and these longtime friends. I want to start off by keeping
Speaker 1: my. It's a really simple I'm siding with the parents on this one. I think that there is a much more interesting etiquette question at play that involves how you as interested parties talk to someone about their behavior. But from a purely etiquette perspective, I think that it is your responsibility of you owe someone an apology to make it happen. And if you're not getting the call back, having left a message, I do think that the onus is still on you because that apology is something that's
Speaker 1: that should be compelling. It should be coming from inside you because you want to deliver it, and
Speaker 1: to me that would. That would provide the direction that it's up to me to reach these people on, to reach them in a way that lets them know how serious I am.
Speaker 2: I'm a little split on this. On the one hand, I think that there I mean there's a little bit of an automatic assumption going on that she's calling to make this heartfelt apology and the the people who have received that message, then don't feel that they should be the ones to have to make the phone call back to her and that I don't necessarily agree with. I think you're absolutely right that it's on the daughter to continually try, and if I hadn't heard back from them in a few days, I would try again. I think that that is a good thing for her to do. But I don't agree with them not returning her phone call. I think that's that. You don't necessarily know what she's calling for to begin with, and so I think that when someone calls and leaves a message saying, I'd love to talk to you, Please return my phone calls E think you should return that phone call? I don't think you make them wait until they call you at a time when your home and you know what I mean? It's like if she hadn't left a message and just said, Oh, I tried to get in touch with them and couldn't She's got to keep trying, you know, here she's left the message, they know about it. It's not like they've missed the phone call When the Mont when that when Carol is saying our friends air not avoiding our daughter a little bit. They are. It's not a full avoidance. It's not like we're totally good, but we're only going to interact with you if you call us and catch us on the phone. If you leave a message, we're not calling you back. And that, I think, breaks a little bit of general phonetic it. I
Speaker 1: hear it. I think it's a valid point, and I think it's nested in a larger context.
Speaker 2: Yeah, no eggs. And that's why I said, I think it is on her to keep calling at this point. I think she's She's now. Had a nun received phone gird on unreturned voice mail, and I think she should follow up on that. What do you say
Speaker 1: if you're the parents? How do you talk to your daughter about this? Or your son who's tangentially involved but clearly has an opinion as
Speaker 2: well? I think the sun I wouldn't worry about his opinion to do much since season out and out Liar on this, and he's not actually like the offending party or anything,
Speaker 2: but it is humorous toe have him as a voice the way families work. It is it's awesome.
Speaker 2: But I think that it's it's time to tell her. Listen, I understand that you feel you did what you should do by making the phone call and leaving the message. And I know that you are capable of issuing a good apology to these folks and that you love them and that you care about them. I know all these things about you, but I know them too. And I know that they're gonna feel awkward trying to return a phone call to you when they know it's probably gonna be about the apology. Make it easy on them and please just give them a phone call or a couple if you have to, until you reach them rather than the voicemail. It's it's maybe it's generational. You could even say you could toss it up there if you wanted Teoh. But I think that you just you make the plea to your child and you say, Please do this. I know all the good things about you, but this is how we work to repair relationships, and sometimes it means looking at it through the other person's perspective and the way they need to receive an apology
Speaker 1: was deposed. Stop cut tape.
Speaker 1: I want to tell you all the reasons that's a good way to approach it, so I'm going to keep going. But I think that's a sample script that I can believe in. Aiken by behind.
Speaker 1: You can't make someone do something so you're approaching with an ask the please that you start off with is the most gracious ask you can make. It's a request. It's not a demand,
Speaker 1: Um, and and you're also
Speaker 1: telling them
Speaker 1: you're bucking them up. This can feel awkward. One of the reasons, and I can feel I so sympathize with the daughter here. This is me. I'm late on my thank you notes. My mother is talking to me about her good friend who's waiting for the thank you know from me. I've had received this conversation in this direction from someone who gave it well, and
Speaker 1: it's it's that fueling inside yourself where you know what you should do, and it's It starts to feel awkward because you haven't. There's a gap between your expectations for yourself and what you're delivering. I'm assuming a lot, but that's one of the things that can start to be an impediment to just getting it done. What can feel like a simple task and the way you talked about it? This is so within your capability. I know that you understand all the angles here and what's going on, and I trust you toe to navigate it and deliver and do it well. And I'm providing that little encouragement to go do that and I'm letting you know it matters
Speaker 2: and that little insight to that. It matters to the other person that I know them well enough, and it's a you know,
Speaker 2: sometimes this is how family and close friends work things out, and it's a It's a good idea to lean into that here.
Speaker 2: I also want to
Speaker 1: offer a little appendix to this question, and
Speaker 1: I was gonna call it bonus points. But it's not really bonus. In some ways, it's about hitting those minimum expectations. I don't think that it's a lost cause toe also right that handwritten thank you note,
Speaker 1: I think
Speaker 2: one that should have been sent, Yeah,
Speaker 1: yeah, and it's not because it's going to do the job. I think the phone call is still important. If you got to deliver an apology. I think doing that well with your voice is important. But just hitting that that minimum note might be one other thing that you could say it would be a way to have that conversation
Speaker 1: that notes on the mail. I just wanted to apologize for how long it took to get it to you. I appreciated your gift. So so much might be just another way, the layer in some effort into the apology in a way that will help it come across as sincere and genuine. It's
Speaker 2: sort of closes the loop on the issue as a whole by filling the gap that the lack of thank you know, created. Exactly, Carol. We certainly hope this helps. And hopefully all family and friends will be able to gather and enjoy some good quality time together soon.
Speaker 2: What are
Speaker 1: you going to say? Well, I want to take thank you. And I want to say it in a way that will please and how they go wrong.
Speaker 1: What would you say you were there in person?
Speaker 1: Our next question is about the host guest dance. Dear Lizzie and Dan, your discussions of the host guest dance helped
Speaker 2: me
Speaker 1: conceptualize something I've been confused about for years. My spouse and I have always been surprised the guest gush about are hosting. Friends and family are so very grateful for the basics, having their drink glasses quietly refilled, plates removed, condiments and extras offered beds. Freshly made clean towels available, their preferences for activities taken into account.
Speaker 2: The's air.
Speaker 1: Very basic host duties. It's like effusively thanking a cashier for ringing up your purchases.
Speaker 1: I finally realized that some kind, generous people just don't know the steps to the dance. Instead of being irritated when hosts haven't prepared my bed, I still find this shocking or given me clean. Towels are offered me something to drink or expect me to make myself at home by looking through their cabinets for glasses or rifling through their linen closet.
Speaker 1: I remember that some people have never had dance lessons. I am sometimes at a loss about how to compensate for a lack of host skills. For example, can you offer guidance about what kinds of extras a guest can request that a meal with an inexperienced host?
Speaker 1: It's of course, rude to ask for fresh gooseberry, jm or locally grown organic light cream or gluten free bread made from locally sourced oats. I'm gonna add that you ground yourself. I think that a host is, however, expected to provide typical condiments and add ons, catch up for fries, salted butter for potatoes and so forth.
Speaker 1: Once, at a small dinner party, I had to ask for a napkin, a knife and a glass of water.
Speaker 2: That was extreme,
Speaker 1: of course, but what about less mandatory items
Speaker 1: if I'm served coffee? I think it's OK to ask for milk, cream or sugar, but not for hazelnut syrup or almond milk or turbinado sugar, unless I know the host well enough to assume she has thes items on hand. But what about salt and pepper? A casual dinner? I wouldn't ask for that in a formal affair, but at a breakfast or casual lunch, I would.
Speaker 1: I'm never sure what the limit is if I don't know the host very well. Can I ask for ice for my water? I don't despite my Southern swoon over tepid drinks.
Speaker 1: Can I ask for sour cream for my baked potato? I don't if they at least offer salt. Thank you for your always thoughtful advice. Best Wishes. June
Speaker 2: June. I love this email. I just do. It's such a great question. You paint so many beautiful pictures in here of experiences I think all of us have had. There are moments where you end up being a guest of someone who who's posting dance is quite different from your own. I'll put it that way. You're right. It's hard to know exactly where the lines of permission are. The those appropriate lines. I mean, I know that's like what this whole blood gases about, but it's fascinating to me when we feel comfortable asking for certain things and when we don't because you might say, within your close friends and family, of course. Ask for the almond milk. You know, ask for the sour cream. Just ask if they happen to have any on hand, you know, And that's not something you used to do in someone else's home. You you wouldn't ask for Think you think they would put it out and provided or offer it if they wanted me to have it right? Say that at a dinner party, Your hostess serving you, you know, steak and green beans and potatoes. You don't ask for chips and guac unless those were already served, you know, earlier in the evening as your appetizers. But, I mean, I like what June is thinking of here. In terms of there are different
Speaker 2: ways that we're gonna behave with different people and in different scenarios, visiting your in laws, you might feel really comfortable with them and willing to ask questions and for extras, visiting other in laws you might not, you know, even though these are people who are definitely really close to you.
Speaker 1: Is it the first visit? The second visit, The Fifth Visit? I think sometimes that familiarity can help make some of those choices easier.
Speaker 2: And one thing you're kind of
Speaker 1: getting at is that familiarity, I think, can help make some of these choices as well as how close you are to someone. The You know, I'm incredibly close with my in laws. But on the first or second visit to their house, I was probably on one kind of behavior. And now that I've been there double digits of times multiple times over,
Speaker 1: um, much more comfortable asking or making little requests.
Speaker 2: So besides the issue of familiarity and kind of closeness and the comfort. You know how well you know these people whether or not to make an ask of something additional. One of the other questions you seem to be getting at June is the idea of how corrective does this come across. If there isn't something on the table that normally would say, your host served you burgers and you're right, there's no ketchup. Does it sound like you're you're telling your host that they're lacking? Or that they didn't do a good job hosting by not putting these things out? And I think again, it's the closeness and familiarity that's going to make you feel more or less comfortable, whether or not you just that it comes across that way. I think it could be easy with
Speaker 2: someone who is like your your child or someone you've spent time teaching to for it to sound more like a correction or like a suggestion like Oh, would have been thoughtful to put out what was, he said. We didn't have forks and napkins and glasses, and one point you know what I mean, Andi. I think sometimes it's funny how, in a very familiar situation Sometimes we can almost sound to corrective because there's that comfort level there. And I would try to avoid that.
Speaker 2: When you ask for things. I think asking for them with a tone that is genuinely just wondering, Oh, do you happen to have some Salter? Or would you mind if I asked for some salts? That's another way to do it. The Would you mind if I asked for? And I think that those might be ways to broach it and still keep it from sounding corrective.
Speaker 1: I think you're circling exactly the right answer here, which and I think you're extracting from the question the issue that June's really running up against. And it is that question of how do you ask for the things that would make you more comfortable, which ah host would theoretically want to provide and at the same time do it in a way that I like the term corrective but doesn't point out the mistakes or
Speaker 1: isn't sort of blaming or revealing of of ah, lack of knowledge or prepared? Yes, and I think that you're so right that the tone of that ask is sort of defines in many ways whether or not, it's appropriate or not. I'm thinking about the more casual situations, the kind of host who would say Make yourself at home and in their mind that creates the expectation of Go to my Cabinet and get a glass of water. If you want one or the linen cabinet
Speaker 1: because that's already a more casual relationship, you probably have a little more latitude in terms of making a request of that person. They're probably less likely to be offended because they're not
Speaker 1: necessarily thinking about the same traditional etiquette structures that maybe you are if you're if you're If you've got a reform for the host guest dance in your mind.
Speaker 1: So it really is the tone of that ask that is going to determine how it's received. It's not gonna be too far out of the expectations of a really casual host that you would be asking for something.
Speaker 2: And all that being said, I would use it June as encouragement for myself when I'm hosting to be this awesome host that you have described your guests talking about, because it sounds like you really create a beautiful host guest dance for your friends when you describe quietly refilling glasses, removing plates, making sure their extra types of condiments you know not just the regular run of the mill or asking if anyone would like anything that they don't see on the table. That's another really great way to be a great host and prompt eso. If your host out there and you're thinking, Oh, boy, I don't do all the things that June just listed goals these air, great things to aspire to If you want up up your hosting game and just up that level of comfort that you're offering to your guests by thinking ahead a little bit and saying things like, You know,
Speaker 2: do you have everything you need or would you like ice for that glass? Things like that. I think it It's kind of a good moment to take and be inspired by
Speaker 1: hitting those marks with ease, and having them come from a genuine place inside of you is so instructive it will make attaining that level of hosting both something that someone could recognize in terms of the marks you're hitting but also recognisable is something attainable and doable because of the way that you do it and that can be so important.
Speaker 2: And it reminds
Speaker 1: me of that host guest dance metaphor that you found so useful and that you introduced this question with. And
Speaker 1: there's something that I learned in the dance world many years ago. And that's that the more experienced a partner, the better a dancer someone is, um, the better They are dancing with anybody, no matter what their skill level and the mark of a really accomplished professional is that they can waltz around the room with their longtime partner, and they can also pick up with a real beginner who's there for the first time. So
Speaker 1: I applaud your use of the metaphor. I'm so glad you found it useful, and hopefully that thought is useful for you as you continue to be that excellent dance partner for all kinds of guests.
Speaker 1: Betty our posters is having a few of her friends to her home for a birthday party.
Speaker 1: Like everyone else. She thinks that are any good, is perhaps not perfect, but good enough so that there are no glaring errors.
Speaker 1: But the housekeeper must tell Betty she has noticed a few errors.
Speaker 2: This question is titled Elektronik. Everything question mark
Speaker 2: Hi, Lizzie and Dan. We are expecting our first child later this year. Congratulations to you. With the state of things we still wanted to celebrate with friends and family, so have opted to do a drive by baby shower or the sounds cool.
Speaker 2: The invites were sent out using a website that sends invitations via text and email so we don't actually have addresses for everyone. Our registry is also Web based. Gifts have already started arriving in the mail, so I'm starting to think about thank you's were planning to do a thank you video post event to distribute to everyone but also wanted to do individual thank you's. Would it be okay to send thank you notes via email, since everything else about the event is electronic? Or do we need to collect addresses of all our guests? Sincerely thankful expectant Mommy Leo Me
Speaker 2: the only Thank you
Speaker 1: for the question and congratulations on this very exciting moment in life.
Speaker 2: New baby.
Speaker 1: Um,
Speaker 1: in the spirit of simple answers, I'm going to say, Get those addresses if you can.
Speaker 2: I'm going to second the motion. I know it's not what anybody wants to hear, but I do think it's a good idea. So let me
Speaker 1: give a thought about why that might really, really be worthwhile. And the first obvious thought is because then you can send people handwritten thank you notes, which is so, so nice, particularly if people have made an effort taking the time to participate in a shower where there is some expectation of gift giving. They've probably given gifts. And due to the nature of the shower, no matter what you do a drive by shower,
Speaker 1: I'm thinking there's gonna be a little bit less individual human to human contact, So I'm gonna be
Speaker 2: thinking a lot less s.
Speaker 1: So I'm going to try to seize every opportunity I can to really connect with my guests in ways that feel significant and meaningful on. I think the follow up handwritten Thank you notice such an opportunity to do that. But I'm even looking beyond that horizon.
Speaker 1: I'm thinking about building that database in your life, building that spreadsheet, that list where you actually have addresses for the people in your life that are the most for you that you're the closest to on. There's no time like the present. There's no excuse like this one to start collecting those addresses, and maybe there'll be another baby shower down the
Speaker 2: road.
Speaker 2: That's why we're business partners, folks, because he thinks of the good stuff. A long term effective
Speaker 2: No, that is Dan. That is such a good suggestion for a reason for why you would do this. And I'm not saying that the reason of actually thinking someone you know isn't enough.
Speaker 2: But I think that these parties offer moments for you to build on those lists. You know, just the same way that a kid's birthday party would allow you that same way to build in your Childs community. And then you've got the addresses to send out the birthday. Let's That's a anyway, you get the idea.
Speaker 2: It's a really good reason for something that's already a
Speaker 1: good thing to Dio and for all of those people that love tech that are thinking of themselves. Boy Digital shower That sounds awesome, a service that sending invites coordinated with text messages. Boy, that would really reach my friends and family the best
Speaker 1: the tech options for when you've got a spreadsheet that's got people's home addresses for sending that holiday card or that announcement. It becomes so easy when those air in formats and structures that but you really take advantage of them that sometimes having those physical addresses opens doors to a whole new platforms that you also might really like to take advantage of. Once you've got those addresses,
Speaker 2: you know, you also hear us talk about it when when we bring up the subject of gratitude and thank you notes. And what does it really mean when we say thank you? And
Speaker 2: it is also a good practice for you. And it's It's not like you said you were hoping to send out individual thank you emails to people, and I think that that that shows that you're already in that gratitude mindset. But there is something kind of special about that hand written thank you know, even for you as the person writing it. You know, it does have a certain impact of gratitude that's different from I think, the texting or the emailing of the thank you where you're hitting send as opposed toe popping a stamp on it and putting it in the mail. You
Speaker 1: know, I couldn't agree more,
Speaker 2: Leoni. Thank you so much for the question. We hope that your drive by shower is awesome and that you have a wonderful time welcoming your first child later this
Speaker 1: year.
Speaker 1: I guess Joe's friendship turned out to be sort of infectious.
Speaker 1: From Joe, I learned how to be a friend and how to make friends
Speaker 1: at one. Friendship often leads to others
Speaker 1: and, best of all, to appreciate and enjoy people of many varying backgrounds and personalities.
Speaker 1: Yes, sir, with friends. It's a great old world.
Speaker 1: Our last question is about stationary and surnames. This question came to us through Facebook. Dear Lizzie and Daniel. I hope you're well. I have a question regarding correspondents cards I would like to create some customized stationary for my family were parents with one son. But myself and my husband have different surnames, so we can't use the typical the Smith family format. What
Speaker 2: would you
Speaker 1: recommend is the most classic form Smith Dash Jones or Smith slash Jones. Question.
Speaker 1: Shall I use any punctuation?
Speaker 1: I imagine that this kind of card can be used on Lee by family and for any private correspondence on Lee from one member of the family. We should create and use personal cards. Is this correct? Also, could you explain when you have to cross out your name on the card? Thank you so much, and I hope to hear from you soon. My best wishes. D
Speaker 2: de. Thank you so much for a technical question. I love I love the technical etiquette questions makes us up to sharpen our skills a little bit in terms of the family names. I think there are a couple of different styles that you could use and that you should go with whatever you think looks good, and that feels right to you. I believe the hyphen between might make it seem like you are the Smith Jones family as a hyphenated name. The slash seems to look a little less formal, but I could be wrong. Another option might be to put the and symbol in between the ampersand in between and and have the Smith and Jones family or Smith and Jones. I had a friend whose family it doesn't sound like this is what you guys would do, but I had a friend whose family between the two parents and the kids there are three last names, and so they used the initials, and they call themselves the DTL family or something like that, and it's, It's each stands for the other. But again, this would be for much more casual. I think if you want that kind of a route, I could see Smith and Jones. That's what I would personally lean towards the and symbol in between. Dan, what do you think about the idea of who can use this stationary and when you would choose to use it?
Speaker 2: Does he post? I really like Option three
Speaker 1: there. I like the idea of the ampersand.
Speaker 2: I like it cause I just think it
Speaker 1: would look good. It seems
Speaker 1: there's a graphic component to it. It's a little old, and that gives me my sort of my other frame of reference for this, which is tradition. And this is one of those places where, even though we we said, we like deking out on traditional etiquette. This isn't a place where we get a lot of guidance. Family names like this are
Speaker 1: much more common nowadays than they were 50 years ago, so this isn't a place where we can look too far back in the history for sort of good examples or even ideas about how to handle something like this.
Speaker 1: So I'm going with with a choice like, Oh, graphically, I really like the way that looks. And that sort of pushes me towards that ampersand.
Speaker 1: Um, the other question that you asked that does have more of, ah, concrete etiquette. Answer has to do with crossing out your name on stationery and what the purpose of that is, why you would do it.
Speaker 1: It was designed when when people had stationary that they used all the time and it felt very formal. In some ways, it had your name on it. It sort of announced who you were that if you knew someone very well, if you felt close to them personally, you could cross your name out to indicate that that they don't need to see you. They don't. They don't need to do to announce who you are.
Speaker 2: This is just a note from
Speaker 1: you. So you could do ah single slash or across through your name to indicate that it was a more common practice. If you were using business stationery
Speaker 1: for a personal purpose, so you would just draw single line through that business stationery identifier and that lets someone know this was this was a personal note, not a professional request or reach.
Speaker 2: There is another
Speaker 1: question in this question
Speaker 2: within the question
Speaker 2: that has to do
Speaker 1: it. But when you would use a card correspondence car
Speaker 2: who gets to use
Speaker 1: it was from the family versus when you wouldn't necessarily want to use it. And in some ways, the appropriate time to talk about that is right after we've talked about using a business stationery for a personal topic would draw a line through it to indicate that purpose.
Speaker 1: Generally speaking, you're I think you're on the right track. You would think of this type of card as something that would be most commonly used or sort of easily identifiably used as first things notes that are coming from the family thank you's that followed visits or notes to people that everybody in the family had relationships to in some way.
Speaker 1: If you were using that stationary for the purpose of correspondence, that was more private, if you were corresponding with a friend that your husband didn't know where wasn't close to it all,
Speaker 1: I think you could still use it. Maybe you would draw a line through the family name to indicate that
Speaker 2: it was personally coming from you. That might be the way to do it.
Speaker 1: This isn't a hard and fast rule. I wouldn't say. Don't use your stationery for those purposes. It is a family. Um, it is family stationary, so it should be available to you to use and have things that are too specific means you use them much less
Speaker 1: so. I wouldn't say Don't do it,
Speaker 1: but I think it's, Ah, good thing to be thinking about as we're kicking out on stationery
Speaker 2: de. We hope that this answer helps with with your stationery purchase. And we're very excited for you and think it's a very cool tradition that you're upholding by having some family stationary.
Speaker 2: Thank
Speaker 1: 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 80 to 8585463 You can also reach us on social media on Twitter were at Emily Post inst on instagram. We're at Emily Post Institute on Facebook. We are awesome etiquette. Just use the hashtag awesome etiquette with your post so that we know you want your question, feedback or comment on the show.
Speaker 2: If you love awesome etiquette, please consider becoming a sustaining member by visiting us at patri on dot com slash awesome etiquette. You'll get in ads, free version of the show and access to bonus questions and content. Plus, come on, you'll feel great knowing that you helped keep awesome etiquette on the air. And to those of you who are already sustaining members, thank you so much for your support. It's
Speaker 1: time for our feedback segment where we hear from you about the questions we answer and the topics we cover. And
Speaker 2: today we
Speaker 1: hear from Meghan in Ontario, Canada, about Episode 3 11 and the space between runners, Hi, Lizzie and Dan. Thanks so much for answering The question about shared spaces between walkers, runners and joggers has an outdoor cycle ist and Slager slow jog. I, in terms of reciprocal courtesies, have a suggestion that has made a huge difference in my enjoyment and safety. Whether I'm traveling on two wheels or 2 ft, bone conduction headphones.
Speaker 1: They're Bluetooth wireless headphones that sit outside of the ears. So while I'm enjoying music or my favorite podcast, I can also hear all of the outdoor noises around me, including traffic, nature and other people passing, sometimes while on a long bike ride. I used them with my phone's GPS, so I know exactly where I'm going when cycling through a new area. Granted, they're not for everybody, but in a lot of areas, there are bylaws against cyclists wearing noise cancelling headphones. I hope this helps provide some options toe other outdoorsy exercisers, wishing you and your families a safe and healthy fall. Megan
Speaker 2: Hey, Megan. Good, useful feedback. I'll definitely be checking
Speaker 1: those out. Sounds cool, right? Bone conducting
Speaker 2: headphones. I know, right?
Speaker 2: Thank you for sending us your thoughts. Enough dates and please, please keep them coming. You can send your feedback or update toe awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com, or leave us a voicemail or text message at 80 to 858 k i N D. That's 80 to 8585
Speaker 1: 463
Speaker 1: It's time for our post script segment, where we dive deeper into a topic of etiquette. And this week we're going to talk about one of our favorites, Margaret Visitors. The rituals of dinner and this week's selection is a section titled Table Talk found starting on page 2 62.
Speaker 2: We often get so many questions on this show about table conversation, and I figure that dipping into Margaret Visitors
Speaker 2: section on table Talk and a little bit of history on it would be an excellent postscript segment to dive into Margaret Visser. Rights talking is, of course, one of the ways in which we rise above food. We're not at the table merely to eat, but in order to enjoy each other's company. It isn't so much what's on the table that matters, said W s Gilbert
Speaker 2: as What's on the chairs. The ancient Greeks never tired of reiterating that stomach gaster was not enough. One needed mind psyche as well
Speaker 2: that civilized people came together for each other and for philosophy, and not just to stuff themselves. A philosopher host like Mena Dimas would provide a meal for only one or two of his guests. The others would have to dine before coming, bring their own cushions and be content with a sip for everybody from one half pint cup and nothing but a lupine or being for dessert.
Speaker 2: He offered a token dinner, but made it impossible for most guests to come to the party for anything but the conversation.
Speaker 2: Skipping ahead
Speaker 2: the symposium or drinking party, was the place and time for discussion, whether serious or trivial. Subjects at symposia range from what is love to why meat spoils more readily in the moonlight than in the sunlight, and whether people of old did better with portion served each or people of today who died from a common supply.
Speaker 2: Subjects very often had something
Speaker 1: to do with food or
Speaker 2: drink, but the pains of hunger had to be assuaged before conversation began.
Speaker 2: In America Times, it was considered very rude to expect a stranger to speak at length to his host before he had eaten his fill. He was not even asked his name until he had been given dinner,
Speaker 2: but when speaking began, it was polite to contribute what one had to offer. People knew you by the way you behaved, it was only fair to give them material with which to make their judgment of your worth.
Speaker 2: In some societies, drinking and talking is done before dinner. A large Sherpa party begins with 234 even five hours of discussion, quarreling, joking, all facilitated by the drinking of beer. Ah, large crowd assures people that they can work through bridges in safety while at the same time assessing the opinion of neighbors and finding out who their friends are. The community can express either consensus or disapproval for the behavior of various members, and ranking, symbolized by shifting seating arrangements, is adjusted among individuals at a climactic moment, judged with finesse by the host, dinner will appear to please pacify and relieve everybody. Silence falls and everybody gratefully and happily eats in the silence. Any rough edges left by communal friction are smoothed over by the action of eating together in China and Iran. The traditional rule is also talk first, then eat. I don't know if I could do it cause do what talk before eating it before talking. Which one talk before eating at least as a as a form.
Speaker 2: But don't you kind of do that at, like a cocktail party or at a a lot of gatherings? There's kind of almost like a little bit of socializing before as people gather. You know, it's like I feel like it actually is pretty traditional, and I kind
Speaker 1: of prefer cheese plates and crackers and nuts to the main course usually.
Speaker 2: But there are a couple things that I thought were really interesting about this passage. Number one was that it began with the idea that adding conversation to a meal. It elevates it somehow that that as humans across the globe, this idea between dining without conversation but versus dining with and that conversation
Speaker 2: universally became a part of dining in some way, shape or form, I could I could be wrong. There might be smaller sections of the world where it's really not done. But for most people it is a place where we were we talking converse, and it is over food.
Speaker 2: And the idea is that you're not just filling up.
Speaker 1: Absolutely. It's an important social ritual, hence the rituals of dinner.
Speaker 1: But but way say it so often. Sometimes those words lose their meaning, and it really is. This is fundamental to how we structure human relationships, and
Speaker 1: we are talking creatures we like to communicate, So the idea that that conversation is integral to that social ritual and our experience of it. It makes a lot of sense and draws you into the details. When
Speaker 2: do you
Speaker 1: talk? And I was sort of joking at the start of our comment about how I didn't know if I could do it, that I liked the idea of eating and talking and having of some food in my belly feeling sated for that conversation. But that's also the tradition that I'm familiar with. I was thinking as you were reading about the rules about business topics at a business lunch or dinner, and that there was a very traditional structure that said you didn't talk about business at a business dinner, and the host was the one who brought it up until after dinner had been eaten. That for lunch is it was kind of okay to do it once the order was placed, or once you were engaged with your meal
Speaker 1: so that the shorter duration of that meal allowed for bringing up the business topic a little sooner. But
Speaker 1: in many ways I started to think about the formality of that is really conforming to that broader expectation that Margaret visitors describing
Speaker 2: How about the parties where you would basically force your guests to not have any food in order to drive the conversation? I mean, that's definitely to an extreme. But it's so reminded me of our question today about hosting and the host guest dance and and what do you provide and why and how, How would you explain? And I would love to see what any etiquette mavens from from back in the day. What is it about that type of entertaining? And it would probably be that you were so lucky to be invited to your hosts house at all, that you would do whatever whatever they they put forth, you know, even if it was a simple being for dessert, Well, and if the structure
Speaker 1: of that sort of pre meal conversation is understood, or the purpose of that engagement is understood,
Speaker 1: I also liked the way this air described the moment that the food arrives as the moment of peacemaking. Or the moment, of course,
Speaker 1: concludes that experience because that yes, also sort of it has a lot of harmony with a lot of the ideas that I have about how eating meals together
Speaker 1: is so fundamentally important how we build relationships, how we identify the people in our lives, that our allies and our friends know the
Speaker 2: way she describes that Sherpa party where it's, you know, it's like you converse. You figure out who your friends, who you know, what your neighbors air up to, what's going on. And then it probably starts to get a bit heated, because now that we're figuring it out, we're all together. There's a collective judgment happening, and that's when the host so timely brings up the food. It's like it was it was. I loved the way that she put that all together to really paint the picture of how that hosts role of taking, let letting their guests get to that point of tension. And then, ah, here's the wonderful meal here, the things we can all agree on, you know, I think of it. Thanksgiving comes to mind big time with that image in my head, and I just think, and the cranberry sauce heels all like something like that, you know,
Speaker 2: absolutely.
Speaker 2: We spend a lot
Speaker 1: of time thinking about what to say and how to say it. It's nice toe, take a little detour and think about when
Speaker 1: Joey has also found
Speaker 1: that are new. Things often come to like
Speaker 2: our
Speaker 2: just as Joey's new friends like Ginger,
Speaker 2: and she likes that
Speaker 2: she's going to be his friend.
Speaker 2: Helping others is another way to make friends, isn't it?
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 that can come in so many forms. Today we have an email from Lauren, Greetings,
Speaker 1: Lizzie and Dan. I just wanted to take a quick moment and salute to different individuals who probably were expecting their good deeds to go unnoticed. But instead I noticed, and each person brighten my day a bit.
Speaker 1: Yesterday afternoon, I walked out to pull my trashcan back to the house after the garbage was collected. To my surprise, my new neighbor, Kristi, had brought my trashcan back to the communal storage location. When she returned her been
Speaker 1: this evening, as I was leaving lows, I noticed a gentleman returning his cart. He put his card up and then walked over to the parking spot. Next to the corral, grabbed an abandoned car and plays that one in the corral.
Speaker 2: Then I
Speaker 1: started thinking of all the different people. His act had a positive impact on the store attendants who will collect cards at closing time, the next driver looking for a parking spot, and our entire community is now a little less messy. It truly is the little things in life. Thank you both and the production team for the show. Keep the episodes coming. Smiles. Lauren
Speaker 2: Lauren. That is so the spirit. And it is so awesome that you took the time to both notice and salute thes wonderful people who are doing. I wouldn't call them random acts of kindness. I would say these air intentional acts of kindness.
Speaker 1: Thank you for sharing Lauren
Speaker 2: and thank you for listening
Speaker 1: and thank you to everyone who sent us something.
Speaker 2: And we're also gonna thank everyone who supports us. Unpatriotic. Please
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Speaker 2: you can send us questions, feedback and salutes by email. Awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com. You can call us and leave a message by phone. Our send us a message by text at 802858 k i n d. That's 8285
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Speaker 2: are shows edited by Chris Albertine and assistant produced by Bridget Dowd Thanks, Kristen. Bridget,
Speaker 2: Uh