Finger Lickin’ Good: Can I lick my fingers at a restaurant where finger food is the norm?

Q: My husband licks all 10 of his fingers with a smack after each one awhile eating chicken in public.  He says that if he uses a paper napkin, it sticks to his fingers.  After bringing this to his attention several times over three years I am tired of reminding him like he is a child.  I have finally refused to go out to eat with him.  What can I do about this?


A: You are correct.  It is never polite to lick one’s fingers.  He can ask for a wet cloth, or a wetnapkin, which most restaurants have when eating with hands is the norm in the restaurant.  If neither of these can be provided, then he should excuse himself from the table and go to the men’s room to wash his hands.  It is a shame to curtail going out once in awhile because of something that is so easily resolved.

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