Episode 320 - On Candelabras
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 getting guests to use coasters, distracting smells from neighbors, guests who want to extend their stay, and where candelabras go on the table. For Awesome Etiquette sustaining members your question is about navigating a tricky wedding funding scenario. Plus your most excellent feedback, etiquette salute and postscript where we discuss Holiday Cards this Year.
Speaker 1: Maybe it's just that you don't know how to use social courtesy that's old fashioned.
Speaker 1: Watch how busy post and damn posts and act as host and hostess. They know that courtesy means showing respect, thinking of the other person. Really Friendliness. Hello and welcome toe Awesome etiquette, where we explore modern etiquette through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty. On today's show, we take your questions on getting guests to use coasters, distracting smells from neighbors, guests who want to extend their stay and where candelabras go on the table for awesome etiquette, sustaining members are a question of the week is about navigating a tricky wedding funding scenario that's not quite ready. Thio even happen yet, plus your most excellent feedback etiquette salute and a postscript where we discuss holiday cards this year. All that 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. I'm Lizzy bows and I'm Dan Post sending Hey, because how's it going? It's going good. It's going well, I should say, I do feel like I've been painting everything under the sun and like trying Thio deep, clean and spruce up and do what I can before winter sets. And I'm really like inside. Not like outside on my porch. Sure, in my lovely little backyard, like it's it's definitely feeling like I'm starting to hunker. Well, your your house looks great. We just did a little face time tour before we jumped on the mix here. And it looks great because you put a lot of work into it. Thanks e. Should we tell our audience what happened? What do you mean? What happened? That your house is kind of little by little taking on the new Emily Post Brandon colors palette. Oh my gosh, yeah, no, this was a realization. I came to you when I was showing Dan around, and I was like, Well, the blue on the camera is kind of a little bit darker, but it's kind of more like, Well, it's like it's just like our new branding the light blue. And then I was like, Oh my goodness, and the dark green in the bedroom is kind of like our dark and the oh e All of a sudden it was like, Man, it's not. It's not spot on. But it's not far off, either. Working home have just become way too closely connected. I have to ask, Have you noticed that like Oh, the offices like the business color combination, your accent walls or like Oh, that's the green and the blue. And now I'm up in my living room and this is a combination? Not yet, not yet, but actually, the business color combos would be really nice in my office. Maybe that's why I should go for next. I'm not loving the color I have right now, so it will get a redo at some point. But but yeah, no, There's been a lot of a lot of kind of hunker down homework, getting things ready, making sure it kind of took away the yard. Tuck away the garage. Maybe I'll be able to put my car in it eventually. I don't think you're going to get away from the color conversation this easily because the other point I have to make here is that you are slowly turning into your great great grandmother who loves todo.
Speaker 1: What proof do you have? Didn't we do a post script about her painting all our furnitures different colors and things. I know that I've been reworking that same furniture, though Maybe that was maybe that was the thing we talked about. But it's intriguing that you try to say that that we're going to get away from the conversation because we had a totally different conversation coming up for our intro today. And it's Dan who I accused of dodging.
Speaker 1: Can I Can I tell them what I discovered after testing you a couple of times? I'm so curious. What? What is this? And I know what it's about generally, but you haven't told me what the specific thing is. So you guys, Dan does this thing When phone call ends, he says goodbye and the other person says goodbye. And then Dan just waits for the other person to hang up for the call to end. And I have figured this out because I at one point was taking a minute to get back over to the phone, and I realized, Wow, Dan hasn't ended the call either. And I decided to sit and wait for a minute because you know, why not? And and he didn't. We went right upstairs and had lunch and and, like I definitely did. This didn't go far. This was This was very quick. Before I was like Dan, Dan, Dan, he goes, Oh, I was like, You don't end your phone calls. And then he was like, No, I don't I don't That's about I don't go. Take care. Bye. Click. And then I tried it again, and it did. You don't you don't end your phone calls. You let the other person completely disconnect the phone call for you. Okay, Now I know what you're talking about. And you did. You totally busted me a couple of times with this one and e don't know that it's terribly wrong, but it sounds lazy for some reason. So maybe it is a little lazy. And if I was toe, think back on the etiquette. I think I often talk about whoever initiates the call has a responsibility for ending it. I think that's sort of one of them. Is that true? It kind of is a little bit. I mean, it's not a rock solid social rule, but I think of it. If if I initiate a call, we could argue that one out if we try, but in more formal circumstances. That's the the kind of unconscious standard you might deviate from. But if particularly for business, if I initiate a call, I also think of it is my responsibility to wrap it at some point. So let someone know we've accomplished the business. And, yeah, if you're directing it, I could I could get behind that for sure. And I think there's a social version of that that's like, Oh, I've called you and it obviously there's more play. But
Speaker 1: I could think of myself as being responsible for that hang up if I'm the one who initiated the call, and perhaps it is a bit lazy. If I don't do that, I'm taking note here. I'm thinking, I'm also thinking to myself, Protect yourself, Protect yourself. Protect yourself. Don't carry around a live mike all the time. Gosh, Lizzie was so annoying on the podcast, like, Damn, I'm still here now. You kidding? I am perfect 100% of the time. Always. This was a funny one. And I always like how we kind of joke around with our with our funny behaviors and things like this. But it reminded me of a point of etiquette that you did call me out on. And rightly so, despite the fact that I'm sure I didn't take it well at the time. Um, but it would. And I was like, I bet Dan, like, did this initially as a practice in business. And then it morphed into Now what? I I observe us this kind of lazy like I don't have to end the call. Someone else is going to disconnect it up to touch the phone again. It all kind of thing. But the point that you had made to me years ago was that I often very quickly end the call. And sometimes in doing so, yeah, because people don't always just say goodbye. Goodbye. It's like, Goodbye. Goodbye. Goodbye. Goodbye. Goodbye. Yeah, take care of it. And I would often be clicking off after, like I said goodbye Or after I heard the first person on the call Say goodbye and Dan would be like Lizzie like, you can't do that. I'm like, No, I said goodbye this to goodbye. We're fine, right? And so I was imagining that this behavior could have, like, developed out of this intention that you have of making sure everyone really is clear off the call on has been heard. I completely want to grab the good intention that you're offering me and claim that was by thinking it is so far from the reality.
Speaker 1: So it really is. It's born out of laziness. You just You're like the call and when Lizzie clicks off, So you've got me thinking about a point of etiquette here that I think is really the culprit or the cause of the behavior that you're noticing, which is that I'm using more and more Bluetooth devices. So I'm physically not as connected to my phone. I could pause a podcast. I could change the volume from my headset, but from your heads, I don't think I figured out how to hang up a call yet. And it's true. Oftentimes my phone is out of reach. It's not physically on me or with me. It's funny because the whole, like discovering it, painted this image of you almost in like old And I mean, I know what your office looks like. But like almost in like old school like lawyerly office, you know lots of leather and brass and mahogany. Your cigars the whole thing and, like sitting like far away from a desk phone and, like some imaginary secretary, apparently lives in your house in this fantasy, too. But it just it did paint this picture if you like, not even needing to work close to your computer but like to get the work you're doing. Done very. I don't know lofty, I would say. But it was interesting to me to that kind of a simple and practical I would say practical because, like you said, you're far away from your phone. So that's often while you're not, um, uh, moment or situation and ends up like having this assumed air. Or like that, I was able to paint the picture I painted out of it for myself rather than like, Oh, Dan's got his new you know, Bluetooth earphones in. And so, of course, he's not near his phone. Like I should disconnect the call like it was interesting that it went the other way, and I'm sorry for that. I'll try to I'll try to keep better, like painting, painting better pictures of you. In my imagination, I'm fascinated by also the way you brought up the abrupt hang up. Also, here we are sort of either. So it's like their their their mirror image. Behaviors in some way will find the sweet spot in the middle.
Speaker 1: I think we do a decent job most of the time, but this was this was a funny moment and thank you for letting me pointed out and and kind of deep dive into hanging up etiquette. Well, shall we deep dive into some listener questions? Maybe find a sweet spot? Answer or two? I think we should. 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 8028585463 You can also reach us on social media on Twitter. We're at Emily Post ends on Instagram were 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 1: Our first question is titled Post Co vid coasters. Hi, Lizzie and Dan thanks for reading my post co vid party. Question. How can we get guests to use coasters? A party isn't as fun if we're following guests around putting the coaster under their drink every time they move saying, Here's a coaster for you gets the job done for now. But if they pick up their drink to take a sip, there's only a 50% chance that lands back on the coaster. Even the most conscientious guests still seem to be placing their drinks directly on the table as soon as they change locations help. It's just such a great etiquette question, and it's such a painted such a good picture of like what this host is experiencing during their parties. Like Like I can picture the party having so much fun and the host just being like a like There's something about a question signed Help exclamation point. It's also true that the picture is such a clear picture of sort of pursuing Party gets around slipping coasters under their drinks. It's almost the definition of the nervous host in some ways, but there's no reason that it needs to appear that way that in many ways I think The reason we have this sort of cliches image of a host or hostess in our mind is that
Speaker 1: there's something sort of realistic or practical about that that would furniture is potentially really damaged by a glass that's not on a coaster. And it's true that even the most conscientious guests, as our question asked, her mentions tend to forget as the party gets going. As people's attention drifts for some people, they're going to be really consistent. Good about it. But not everybody, even those people who have it in mind. Don't you think that it it might be the case? An anonymous Please let us know if it's not that, like the larger the party or kind of the more cocktail, like the party or barbecue like the party, the less control, whereas sort of if you do have a small dinner party, I feel like if it's like you and only a few other people, there's less likelihood that people are gonna be getting up. You're probably gonna be sitting and you know, your living room. You're sitting room, whatever you know, wherever you're sort of entertaining, less likely that you're gonna be like up and mingling among the three or four of you, you know what I mean? So I could imagine that that's a that's a difference. But, Dan, the one thing that came to mind right away when I read this I said, Well, the thing you don't dio is you don't like blow your top over it. You know, a riel Monica moment, sort of speak where you're just, like, use the coasters. And I feel like I've seen you know, we've seen that in lots of movies and TV shows and things like that. But keep doing what you're doing Here is a coaster for you is the right way to go, keeping after it as best you can for your own sake. I don't know if this would be an option for you if if you would, if you would consider it or not. But getting a nice, thin and beveled piece of glass to put down on top of your wood for such a party can be a way to still show off the wood. But you have kind of a permanent giant coaster, and you're just going to not worry about the fact that people may or may not be leaving a ring on the glass itself. Lizzie Post. That is a great idea. You know, our kitchen table is this way. It was a table our grandfather made, and we got this sort of with the edges ground down, sort of a beveled piece of glass that sits on top of it. And it's miraculously the message that you can sustain their. It's great. I had had a very similar thought. That was sort of less permanent in nature. I'm saying to myself, Could you could you get a tablecloth out for those bigger parties so that you protect the important table? And if you've got some little end tables here and there, really be sure that there are a couple coasters there, so it's almost like you have to move around them to get the glass down, and you don't be ridiculous about it. But if they're if they're really there on both ends of the couch, a couple of options in case someone sitting and someone standing there, you just sort of over prepare in that way. I was even thinking you could throw like, um, like a little throw cloth over like a small table that wasn't even there. The tablecloth but a scarf or something. If there was something you really cared about, didn't trust booking me an honest at this point, I am a little bit. That's why I like your glass suggested, because it's ah notched up version of that. But I do think that that would be easier than having the stress of. Here's a coaster for you. Here's a coaster for you. Here's a coaster for you and I know it's hard to let go of that when you see it like moment after moment after moment and you're trying to relax and enjoy your party. I couldn't agree more because about the sort of repeated action of doing it again and again. I do think there's room depending on how you know people on how you're hosting to mention something at the start of a party as you greet people or early on in a night E. That's a door. You gotta explain this to me. Oh, okay. To my house, you gotta use a coaster like it's not what you say when you open the door, but, like maybe like early in the night when you're getting that first round of drinks, so I don't know. I think I could get away with it. I think we've been batting this back and forth for a couple of minutes now, and I'm I'm wondering if Anonymous might not have given us a part of this question, at least because we both agree on the glass is being like a really helpful solution that that's worked for both of us. But on this, I think we might be divided and we might have to toss it up to the audience. I'm going to say I want audience perspective on this. What would be really curious? Yeah, okay, you're down at that, too. I am. I'm curious What the sample script would sound like me to the words matter. Here. I haven't landed on one that makes me feel comfortable. Yet I am going to confer with Tricia Post, who is my mother master of sample scripts, and I'll see if she comes up with anything. But I'm curious. If there's a way thio preemptively or early early in the evening or event I should say, really encourage. Guests will put it that way to use coasters beyond Oh, here's a coaster whenever you, you know, kind of hang out with that group or just doing the thing of, like grabbing a coaster and putting it under someone's drink. Help! Exclamation point. We need some help on this one you've stumped themselves into into agreeing with you. We need help, but we do think that if the glass is an option for you that it's a really great option. Andi. It can cut. Cut back on how much you're focused on on sort of those rings and making sure those coasters get under the glass so that the wood or the tabletop isn't damaged.
Speaker 1: And, of course, the best party guest toe ever. Give a host. If there's something that you couldn't afford to lose, don't have it out where a guest can break it. Anonymous. Thank you so much, and we hope to have more from our audience on this question, And a successful party needs planning and skill, whether it's a special carnival designed for gay entertainment for a game party in a home ah, holiday party, they all take planning, and they should all be fun.
Speaker 1: Her next question is about a new neighbor and a new aroma. Hi, Lizzie and Dan. Thank you for your awesome podcast. I'm writing on behalf of a friend who lives in a large apartment building and recently had a new neighbor move in next door. Since moving in, this neighbor has smoked marijuana daily in the afternoons and evenings. Usually while the actual consumption isn't a problem for her, my friend has found the smell of marijuana smoke distracting while working from home and has been woken up by the smell in the wee hours of the morning. She does not want to make it a big deal and does not want toe rat her neighbor out to the buildings. Management for context. We live in Washington D. C. Where marijuana is legal to consume on private property. How can she address this situation while not making a stink in quotation marks about it? Thank you for taking the time to answer this question. I hope you and your families are staying healthy and are enjoying the first days of autumn. Best Camille. Camille, Thank you for this question. It's this is this is exactly what higher etiquette are. Our last book that we published on cannabis etiquette is all about. It's the idea that you want to be able to address these issues that do come up when legalization happens and you want to find, you know, comfortable ways. And I love the fact that right from the get go, we're approaching it from the idea of I don't want to make a big deal about this, but I do want to address it, and I can understand why. It is a strong aroma, and it does. Any kind of smoke is often going to be a strong aroma. I can tell you from anecdotal experience that the friends and and people that I interviewed for higher etiquette we talked about this type of question. What what would you do if the smell was wafting over and you didn't want it? And obviously everyone did say you could discuss it with someone and just let them know, Hey, like I obviously have no problem with you smoking, but it, unfortunately, it is drifting over to my apartment a lot. Is there something we could do to help mitigate that? And that's kind of the standard like, well, well reasoned approach if you're going to approach, but a lot of people have had really good luck being a little sneaky and do it a little cheeky, too. And I've seen really good things of people doing like a either a smoke buddy, which is something that you can blow the smoke into so that it dissipates and and kind of filters it through. And it doesn't create a much smoke or candles. Sprays the types of products that are out there to help eliminate specifically cannabis smoke dropped off with like a plate of cookies or like Rice Krispie treats or something as like munchies or like a salty snack like it's There have been some and just like a note that reads, You know, like, so glad to have you as a new neighbor was hoping you might consider giving this a try. Like, you know, enjoy your afternoons like or something like that. There have been some really cute and appreciated ways, and that doesn't know. We all know that it doesn't always work to kind of do the cheeky thing or the overly suggestive thing, which is buying someone a product in hopes that they'll use it and solve the problem. But I have heard anecdotally that those have been really well received and even created some really great neighbor friendships. Okay, so what I love about that answer is that my sort of my answer begins with the neighbor charm offensive that to me, this is such a classic neighbor question and whether it's, you know, I mow the lawn too early in the morning or I leave my trash buckets out. You know, for three days that oftentimes there's an opening charm offensive that involves establishing a relationship where you can talk in more detail about these things and in the example you just gave that charm offensive comes along with sort of the beginnings of the correction. But it z frankly, the level of charm that you're talking about actually sort of making someone a little gift. Writing a hand written note, I think as you up that game, you get in some ways sort of up the the degree that you're talking about the particular issue, and I also like how you're keeping sort of the whole discussion of how it's a problem for you, not part of the initial, um, the initial reach out or touch on the topic that if that conversation develops, there's always time to talk about. Well, it's actually really during work hours that I find it the most distracting. Or it's the late night time that potentially wakes me up. Can you believe it? That that smell strong enough? It wakes me up at night that that conversation being sort of one that you could have down the line, complementing the fact that it's that strong is often a good like charm offensive to I mean, wow, that was just really incredible smell. But unfortunately, it does wake me up, you know, and I would love to avoid that. I like that charm offensive Dan. I'll tell you the other thing that in, in terms of just neighbor relations, I really like in this question that tells me that I can trust
Speaker 1: Camille to communicate well to her friends. Sort of. The quality of the interaction that that we would suggest is the idea that you don't want toe. Get the building management involved right away, that that's not your first step recourse. And I think that if you can, if you feel like you can build that report and resolve these issues between people that it's everyone prefers that. I'm sure. Anecdotally, you've also heard that people would rather hear about it from the neighbor than from somebody who's got some sort of authority or where it could start. To actually work is a Siris of dings against you in an apartment building that keeps track of that kind of thing.
Speaker 1: It's a good point. I have, like, a kind of add on to this that I want to present and hear your thoughts on what happens if maybe Camels Friend goes the route of leaving a cheeky, sweet, fun gift, and the person even probably, like, appreciates it right and says, Oh, thanks so much, I really appreciate it. And then the problem doesn't stop like the 2 a.m. thing happens or it's just not like maybe maybe it doesn't work. Maybe the product doesn't work or the person doesn't end up using it like, what do you think that next step would be? Would you just go straight for the direct conversation and be like, tried with a soft approach? But I gotta be a little more direct. I do. I think, that you end up in that classic sort of tiered response situation where you try this thing. And if it works, then you notch it up to this thing. And I think I thought you were going to say, What if the problem really persist or they're antagonistic? And I was thinking, Oh, I'm now I'm going third tier where you say to yourself, what are the regs in the building? Like maybe it's legal to consume on private property. But smoke is absolutely not allowed. And you could you start to figure out what ground you have to stand on, who the authority ultimately is, and what you're sort of driving to is maybe that mid tier where you're not going that full route, but you're But you have to deal with the fact that you've tried the soft route. You did try it and it didn't work. Or maybe it just didn't work as well. As you know, maybe, and you think about what is the real ask for you? Is it Is it a time? Is it a degree? What exactly is it? And you get more specific and you ask to have that conversation you ask. So would you just sign the note? Your neighbor, rather than signing like your apartment number your name so that if it failed, you could approach with the direct, as if you didn't know that someone had left a gift and cookies on the doorstep. So here's the funny I know you're asking thinking this is funny and I would say Absolutely yes, you are. Really? I would. I would sign that a little steamy. Would you sign it? The neighbor? Would you not sign your apartment so that it could be anonymous and you could act like you didn't know about the gift as a first round approach? I would sign mark next door or or like Mark an apartment B for exactly the reason that we're talking about that it actually starts to set you up toe. Have that next conversation. Um, whatever it is, whether it's about this issue not being resolved or the next neighbor question that comes up. Hey, I'm Mark from next door. Hope you got my cookies. I was open. We could talk about the trash pickup. Do you have a minute? Camille? Thank you so much for this question. There is a lot to talk about when it comes to neighbors and the shifting landscape around cannabis. E guess I knew about refers That's marijuana Ever since junior high,
Speaker 1: some of the boys smoked pot that's jive talk for marijuana
Speaker 1: and after a while, and and I got so that we did, too.
Speaker 1: Yeah,
Speaker 1: Our next question is titled Extended Stay Etiquette. Hello, Lizzie and Dan. Your podcast is so great, and I'm loving the current discussions surrounding etiquette in the world of Cove. It my question centers around an issue I have encountered in pre Covad times surrounding invitation dates. We often used to host family at our home for long weekends or even a week as they live in different states than we dio. I'm always happy to host and delight in having people around. However, I often feel at odds with my mother in law. In the planning process of such days, she will often respond to an invitation with the proposal of extra days causing these days toe last far too long. Two plus weeks, or else extend the invitation for her sister or niece to join. When I remain firm on the amount of time I am able and willing to host, it can become uncomfortable. I'll give a specific example. I invited my mother in law to stay with us for one week, arriving on a Saturday and leaving on a Saturday. She then responds that she will come Sunday to Sunday, but may want to stay longer. How do I kindly but firmly tell her, No, this does not work for me. I was taught that you can either accept or decline in invitation, but that there was no real room for editing dates and details. When you're being invited as a guest, help and thank you for all that you dio Kate, Kate, Thank you for the question and for the encouragement on the show. I definitely could see a couple things going on here, and it was really helpful that you gave us the specific example of how this plays out because it really gives us a mortgage wrist for the mill. Broadly, I think it's true that there is some expectations around hosts and guests and not negotiating. And there is the very realistic back and forth that often happens at the initial stages of planning something where people are letting each other know essentially what will work for both parties and then the good etiquette work is figuring out where the overlap is, what's possible and that requires in those sort of initial exchanges. Cem openness to the communication that when I heard your specific example, I didn't see going on from your mother in law. So when you reach out and say We would love to invite you from Saturday to Saturday and she responds, I will be coming from Sunday to Sunday and might want to stay longer. It's the specificity of that language, which tells me where the problem begins. And the the response that I would be looking for from someone is, you know, Sunday to Sunday would work much better for me, and I'm wondering if you would be open to a longer visit. So the language isn't. This is what I'm going to do, and I'm ignoring what you've said is good for you, but that there's an acknowledgement that you've heard the different thing that you're suggesting something different for the reasons that it would work for you. And you're wondering if there's some overlap to me. That's how that sort of more natural early exchange, where there is some flexibility around what the end result is going to be would sound and how it would play out because you didn't get that response. I'm now I've got a second level etiquette problem. Which is how do you respond to a rude reply? Or how do you respond when someone isn't doing the host guest dance with you? Well, and that's a real challenge is when you put on that etiquette hat and say, All right, now I'm going to proceed in a way that really, um, I can feel good about because I can't necessarily. I don't wanna use the word trust to sort of lightly, but I can't trust the other person toe. Follow the steps to this dance the way I would expect. Dan, I'm really kind of loving the way you're parsing all of this out, and I do think it's a it's important to recognize sort of, that among family, this might be more common, whereas more formal invitations among more distant friends. Or even if a work colleague was gonna come stay or something, it wouldn't quite have the same back and forth nous of it. But I also think that within families, it's okay to sometimes be firm about your dates and other times be accommodated like And so you might say, Boy, you know, this time Sunday, it's like, Oh, you know, when she responds, Well, I will come Sunday to Sunday and I may end up staying longer. That's when you you do have to jump in right then and there in the moment with that language of no and say and you want to do it gently, You don't want to just say no, because that would be awkward, but saying unfortunately, this time Sunday to Sunday really won't work for us, and we do have to keep it to a week. But maybe we can either plan this visit for another time or plan a longer visit for a different time. There is, of course, the joke that we haven't made yet that you know, there's the old saying about fish and houseguests and that they both stink after three days. So the fact that we're doing a week long visit and trying to extend it and often doing a two plus weeklong visit as that extension as just a repeated pattern with this person, I think that that does get frustrating and that does kind of push someone's boundaries. At a certain point, the history comes to bear for sure. Yeah, Dan, would you have Cates partner talk thio their mother about what's going on here? Or about, you know, not doing long visits? If it's the length of the visitors, what's becoming the problem? E. No, Sometimes sometimes we could be tactical about who you know, who converse is with who in a family. It might be a good idea. It was sort of an Asterix thought for me that you absolutely might engage the family member that maybe Mom, mother in law listens to. And sister in law. Exactly. Did you love to hear from your her granddaughter? So no, there's there's a tactical thinking that I think could help there, and I want to come back to the point that you made, which is that it is okay to set the boundaries, that it's not that you're now being rude by ignoring the dates that she's put forward, that in some ways that you broke in that that chain of this is the
Speaker 1: precise way this could go is a cordial exchange.
Speaker 1: So it really is important for you to set the boundaries that you can live with. And I also I love the honesty able and willing and parentheses when you talk about what you can dio, because I think owning that also lets you be really truthful and and if the week long visit is really about the max, just in terms of what what you can bear in terms of the way you organize your life. And it's not that you have a big appointment on Monday, but it's just you need to put a the boundary of a week on it. You stick to that and stay firm on it. Lean into the weeklong cap or whatever the amount of days ends up being for you as something that's kind of a general rule you're doing, you know, like we really appreciate guests coming and staying with us for no longer than a week just because it does help us kind of keep the flow of the house going. And it's what it's what's been working well for us to be able to have really great visits, and you put it in that you know, we do this because we know it works for us and It helps us have a great time as hosts with our guests as opposed to Mom. You got to go after a week or we have to keep it to just a week. It's such an important point that you can set the exact same boundary and approach it as a positive for affirmative. This is what we can do and we're so looking forward to it, or this is the most we can do. We're hoping that that can work for you and it really is. Um
Speaker 1: it's a subtle distinction, but it will go a long way and you're ultimately setting the same boundary. And that boundary setting isn't just important. It's appropriate in this kind of situation.
Speaker 1: Kate, I don't know what kind of advice will we would give if, during the visit, your mother started to suggest that she wanted to stay longer. But we hope that this advice helps for the set up and will help avoid that kind of situation developing,
Speaker 1: please consider letting us know how it goes. We really hope this answer helps practice the skills of a good guests, leave on time and courteously to thanking your host sincerely for the good time to have E. O.
Speaker 1: Our next question is a candelabra conundrum. Dear awesome etiquette. A friend of mine and I are having a discussion about candle lob replacement on a dining room table. Please advise whether the arms of the candelabra should be perpendicular or parallel to the table. Such a dilemma. Ha! Thank you in advance for your expertise. Sincerely, Alexis.
Speaker 1: This had Emojis one smacking the face and one cracking up rolling, laughing, too, which I appreciate it greatly. It's the spirit for this question. It really is. It was It was like, man, like the dilemmas we face, right? Um, Alexis way tried to look a little bit, but we couldn't find a whole lot of tradition to tell us whether parallel or perpendicular is the right way to go. But boy, did we have some thoughts about it? Yeah, No, we did. Dan and I were like, debating about Well, how wide is your table? How wide is the candelabra? How tall are the candles? Mostly the reason why we're saying things right. Like debate, Right? Debating all those things out is because truly this this is probably more of an issue of practicality. of spacing of aesthetic. You know what do you want your table toe look like? What makes sense for your table? I think our goals. Dan correct. We've been wrong, but I think our goals would be You don't want any, like candelabras so large that it's blocking someone's view or it's reaching into someone's plate? A. Yeah, really, it's It's up to you. It's probably what looks best. I think most of the ones I picture are either on tables large enough and probably in some movie or for fancy TV show scene where they're perpendicular. But I could I could be wrong. I could be convinced otherwise. I really gets practical. Where I think about it is a light source, and once upon a time, ah candelabra gave you multiple candles and it threw more light. It was a perfect thing to put in the middle of your table so everyone could see what they were doing as it got darker and darker. And that's just so not the case anymore that I I think you're much less likely to see a candelabra on a table
Speaker 1: during a dinner wall. People are eating. I think people look for centerpieces that air lower even if they have candles, sort of set within them or on the table that the aesthetic now is. You want people to see each other and you don't need that that hi positioned candle throwing light so you can see your food. You're right. It used to be that there was so many candles per diner and you had, you know, the height of it really mattered because you couldn't have the light shining in people's eyes, right at eye height. But you're right. You wanted it up high enough that you could see low enough. You could see other people. It was like the whole thing. But you're suggesting that you would you would remove them like that. You could just You could have them set as a part of the table to start, but then actually remove them. When people are are seated and dying, maybe you place him on a sideboard. If you love the idea of that flickering candlelight at the table, you know, maybe single candlesticks or low candles, um, provide a more practical way to achieve that aesthetic look of having that flickering candlelight is part of the meal which, which can be lovely also. Oh, but the candelabra so dramatic, it really is. And this is where my very practical thought about placement went. If you were using that candle Lauber as a light source, the parallel placement would be the placement that would shine the most light on the table. Both sides have had a long table. The candelabra be placed with long direction of the candelabra in the same in the same peril. Him just making up candelabra strategies on the spot. Guy? No. Hey, sounds convincing, doesn't he? E e do think Not a bad idea It all. Alexis. I think you can tell by our both glee and joking around about this, but also by our batting around a few different options that it's really up to you at this point, unless we find some good rules toe latch onto and start dispersing more widely used aesthetic and practicality to guide you for this one. And most of all, have fun setting a beautiful table. 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 a voicemail or text at 802858 kind. That's 8028585463 Or you can reach us on social media on Twitter. We're at Emily Post inst That's I N S t on instagram were at Emily Post Institute on Facebook. We are awesome etiquette. Just use the hashtag awesome etiquette with your Social Media post so that we know you want your question on the way.
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Speaker 1: It's time for our feedback segment where we hear from you about the questions we answer in the topics we cover. And today we're hearing from Sandy on our last episode, where we talked about using someone's name based on their name tag.
Speaker 1: Dear Lizzie and Dan. I wanted to add one point to your conversation and episode number 3 19 about addressing someone by name after just seeing their name on a name tag as a member of the older generation. The reason I find it awkward to use someone's first name before they've introduced themselves is that it feels like taking a liberty to use someone's first name before they've said Hi, I'm Mary. I can still remember a time when you had to be invited to use someone's first name, so it feels presumptuous to do so before you've been given permission, so to speak. That said, like Lizzie, I, too might use their name for the first time at the end of an interaction in order to personalize my thanks, for example, Thank you so much, Mary. That was really helpful. I completely agree with the advice you gave, but just wanted to point out another reason why the situation might feel awkward for some of us. Sandy
Speaker 1: Sandy, you are reminding me of a story from my non post side of the family that's infamous, and it it does follow the tradition or the stories about the tradition where you you would never call someone who is presumably older than you by their first name until you've been invited to do so. And I think typically that would be anyone who is a of adult status. And this obviously was kind of more of a thing for my mother's generation and her mother's generation. My grandmother's generation and it was really interesting. She we've my mom had this friend growing up when they would go spend the summers on Martha's Vineyard. And it wasn't until the friend was like in her forties that my grandmother finally said, Oh, my gosh, please call me Patsy And it was like they really they fought like the friend was just of that etiquette mind that she was not going to break this rule. And it was like long into when all the other mothers had invited her to call them by their first name like, yeah, Did she start calling her Patsy? Because I imagine at that point it might have felt like a leap. No, she did, But I think she will always infamously be, you know, both. You know, Mrs Coward and Mrs Colby then. But Patsy man, it took It took a long time for that permission to be outwardly given in that very formal way. Andi, I don't I don't remember in the story whether or not my grandmother than like whether she realized, like, oops, I should have done this a long time ago or whether she was really finally ready. Eso um you know, I love your grandmother. I wish I reached a place with her where I was invited to call her Patsy. I honestly can't even imagine. Sandy, Thank you for adding this point to the conversations is exactly why we love feedback So much is that it could expand our answers. But I do. I think you're right. There are times where this could feel really, really awkward. Eso, you know, Think awareness, right? Awareness of the situation. Sandy, thank you so much for your feedback and thank you for sending us your thoughts and updates. Please do keep them coming. You can send your next be back update or question awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com. You can also leave us a voicemail or text at 802858 kind. That's 8028585463
Speaker 1: It's time for a postscript segment where we dive deeper into a topic of etiquette. And this week Dan got really excited. E should have just let you surprise me with that. You wanted to surprise me with it. I was like, No, no, Tell me what it is like. It would be good to plan it out, and And you you ended up telling me what it was. It's a great topic for this time of year. We've started doing some interviews on this topic because tis the season for holiday cards. Dan. Oh, cousin Lizzie, I am so happy. Thea. Other day I was thinking about someone who had been a very important person in my life, a mentor when I was studying in the arts, and there's someone who I haven't seen a number of years, and
Speaker 1: I was I was thinking about them, as you sometimes do when you're reminiscing, and
Speaker 1: I was realizing that this person probably hadn't heard from me since I had gotten married and had kids, and that it would be really nice to share that with them, that I wanted this person to know how I was doing and what had happened in my life and that they still were someone I thought about that they mattered to me. So from a very personal place, I found myself saying what would be a good way to reach out this particular person? I was like, You know, what I need to do is get his address so I can send him a holiday card with a picture of our family. And that thought led me into an etiquette project that kind of crept up on me and Putin. I do, ah, holiday card from a service. I think it might be Vista print. I don't remember exactly which one, and we uploaded our wedding guest list to it. So it's actually a pretty robust little contact management system for our family correspondence. But there are a number of people that weren't at our wedding who sort of fall into this category people I'd like to stay in touch with. So I've started this project in advance of the time where we actually want to send these cards out of reaching out to people and trying to add their addresses to my contact list. It's been really easy because one of the things that's happened during Cove it is I have found myself reaching out to a lot of people are a lot of people reaching out to me who I hadn't been in as close contact with. So I've actually got these little threads to pull on all around me, and it started to feel not like a like a social distancing etiquette project. But I found myself really leaning into a traditional etiquette to ST connected to people at a time that is oftentimes difficult, where we feel separated and disconnected and well. But you're also using, like a digital means to make that connection staying present. You know what I mean is true. And I guess where the excitement for the podcast came is I was also thinking to myself, I really want to share how this is going with the podcast audience. This is one of those moments where I find myself engaged in the work. I want to be a little bit better, and for reasons that feel really good and it's working, it's like I'm getting these addresses. I'm adding them. I'm talking to Pooja about it. We're thinking about what exactly we're going to share, and we're doing it with enough time in front of us that I think we're gonna be able to execute well on this project. I think thinking about what you're going to choose to share is such a good idea. There's been a Cem trends over the years in holiday cards, and sometimes they can end up not quite hitting the mark on the right sentiment. You know what I mean? Like, it's funny. There it Zsofia Unnie. You'll see, like one person, do it and then you see a lot of people do it, and then you're kind of like over the joke, you know what I mean? But I remember I think it was like last year and the year before. There were a lot of new cards that just joked at the idea that our families only ever looked like this for 3.5 seconds. Smile. You know what I mean? Like that kind of stuff. And they are cute and funny, especially like sometimes when you've, you know, babysat the kids and you know that they're usually bouncing off the walls or something like that. There is a humor to it, for sure, but I think sometimes when it's like it's too many of the jokes, you start to lose the sentiment of sending these, as I think, what Dan's aiming for this year, which is kind of that more connective element that really shares about you and is frankly proud to put that out there and not in a brag e way, but just in a You know, I'm I'm happy. I'm glad that we're safe and healthy this year. I'm you know, our family is doing well, and we hope you are, too. That kind of a sentiment, I think is is really worth preserving Sometimes I also don't want to dismiss the fact that some people are just really funny and they confined ways. Thio be really humorous with these, uh, holiday cards. Yeah. No, e. But I do think some people are able to really strike that note of both humor and good wishes. Goodwill, you know, and I think you just wanna be delicate with it and how you send your messages out. You also don't want to go those superb raggy roots, right? I mean, the other real pitfall for the what used to often be almost like a newsletter. Many families would send out an annual or seasonal almost update on the family, and your mother in particular had, I think, a really excellent set of tips about ways to present information that, um is more likely to come across as a sort of proud sharing than prideful boasting, right? Like as opposed toe either Listing all the colleges that your kid got into You say we're so you can't wait for, you know, Sid, to choose to start college chapter, you know, or yeah, we're really proud of him. Or, you know, there is kind of a light touch and practice with using your sample script. See how it sounds. Say it out loud to someone you know. Think if you got this, how would you read it before you send it? It's always a good idea. E. I think that your caution about humor is wise not just generally, but also particularly in this moment that I think staying aware that this is a difficult time for many people is and in some ways for everyone is something that should absolutely be part of the decision making process. When you're thinking if and how, when you're thinking about whether or not or even how to use humor. No, Dan, you're right about that. In fact, some of the questions we've been getting from reporters this holiday season have been about whether or not you mentioned the current pandemic, whether or not you mentioned sad things that have happened to your family. One of the questions was even whether or not you make a joke about it and that was the one that got a straight no as an answer for me. Anyway, um, I think that it's just too serious of an issue with too many deaths for people to think about making light of the situation. And I think that that can sometimes be a temptation when you're living under a lot of stress and and the situation has been so communal, you know, and there have been ways that people have made us laugh during this time. But I think that probably the holiday card is not the place I would at least advise. And Dan, I won't. I won't totally speak out for everybody, but I'm guessing you're gonna be on the same page with me on this. It's not the place where I would advise doing that on this subject. We almost never say never. But this is definitely one of those places where I think a strong caution is well advised. Ah, lot of people do you ask the question about how to handle just including tougher news in in a newsletter. And we often say Thio, keep it light or in the in the vein of remembrance. If it's about somebody who's passed, you know, we'll certainly be thinking this holiday season about Granddad and how much we wish she was here. I think those are the kinds of things that make those kind of light remembrance touches that I think are really nice. As always when we think about sending out these letters. Dan has in years past remind us of kind of tears of conversation and sometimes medical and personal family news is stuff that we wouldn't put in something like this necessarily. But it does depend on your family and what you're going through and what you're experiencing and how you all kind of you and your family and friends relate to each other in this medium. And certainly many people do. The post sending version of annual card that is a vista print postcards, Got a great picture and maybe a line or two on it. So, you know, Vista Print did not sponsor this post script. There are lots of other services out there. Very good ones. Very, very good. Holiday cards from the Emily Post Garden Collection by Esa Salazar Just saying they're beautiful. Like Sorry s. There is a lot to say about holiday cards. And I am excited that we're doing this post script a little earlier than usual and maybe take it as, ah reminder or hopefully this is my inspiration as a little bit of inspiration. Thio. Move forward and maybe try reaching out to a few people that you haven't touched in a few years. This season, I'll keep you posted. I'll let you know how it goes and definitely let us know how it's going in her feedback. That
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Speaker 1: We like to end our show on a high note. So we turn to you to hear about the good etiquette you're seeing and experiencing out in the world, and that can come in so many forms. Today we have a voicemail from Lucinda
Speaker 2: High losing, Gone I just finished listening. Thio Episode 3 10 And in a rare moment, times like I will call right now rather than just having the thoughts and keeping them to myself. Virtually everything you mentioned that Lizzie was diving too deep on and deking out about where thoughts have had multiple times. I'm so glad you mentioned the salad cross hatching because I make large dinner salad for myself
Speaker 2: all the time, and I have thought to myself as life, cut it up carefully about about exactly what you were talking about with the meat and for knowing the salad is accepting is fabulous. Um, I also have a salute that I would love to make Thio someone I hope, is so our current mail carrier and not our former mail carrier name is Perry, and she is just fabulous. Just in addition to being thorough and kind and always putting packages in a safe place and writing a note on the mail that goes through the slot there, if the number of packages there are at the door,
Speaker 2: she is just such a genuine and caring person. And I haven't seen her for the past week and a half and I'm telling myself she is on vacation or maybe just changed to a different route. That which would be bad enough. Um, but hope she's okay. And I hope I get to see her again. And if not that, maybe through some passage, this Brighton today, although I think she knows how much I like her. Thank you,
Speaker 1: Lucinda. I love love hearing everything in your voice mail. But it's one of my favorite moments between listeners and Dan and myself on the show, or even things we know that you all would connect to, like our relatives over our moments like that, where you're like, Oh man, I've thought about that Well, I'm cutting the last or while I'm doing that This or those very relatable My my brain had that same course of thought moment. They're delightful. I love that moment to the other thing that just jumped out at me here. Is that the confidence that I'm? I think this woman knows how highly I think of her, and I was appreciating everyone who makes the effort toe. Tell other people how they feel because you never know when someone might not be there, and it's really nice to know that you've expressed that You've told someone that they matter. Absolutely. I sympathize, Thio. I'm a big fan of my mail carrier. We have nice little conversations all summer long before it turns winter. And I would be sad if all of a sudden they were just gone. You know what I mean? Absolutely well, Lucinda, thank you so much for sending in this feedback and salute. And we hope that you do get to see your mail carrier soon 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 your podcast. You can send us your question feedback or salute by email. Toe awesome etiquette at Emily post dot com By phone, you can leave us a message or text at 802858 k i n d. That's 8028585463 on Twitter. We're at Emily Post. Insta on Instagram were at Emily Post Institute and on Facebook were both awesome Etiquette and the Emily Post Institute. Please do consider becoming a sustaining member. You can find out more about this by visiting us at patryan dot com slash awesome etiquette. You can also subscribe to the ads version of our show on Spotify or your favorite podcast app on. Please consider leaving us a review. It helps with our show ranking, which helps other people find awesome. Etiquette Show is edited by Chris Albertine, an assistant produced by Brigitte Dowd, thanks to Bridget.