Me, Myself and Junior: The Proper usage of junior and roman numerals in names

Q: What is the proper way to spell and punctuate ‘Junior’ after a name? We are naming our son after his father and I want to be sure I write ‘Junior’ correctly on his birth certificate. Also, when is someone a ‘Junior’ and when would he be the second?

A: A Junior is named after his father when no one else in the family but his father has that exact same name, first, middle and last.  If a child has a different middle name than his father, he is not a Junior. A child is II when named after a grandfather or uncle who had that exact same name, and is III when his father and he have the same name which is also the name of the father’s father, uncle or great uncle. Junior is preced by a comma. Roman numerals are not preced by a comma. And the abbreviation for Junior is Jr.

Proper Traveler: What to do when meeting Royalty

Q: Do Americans bow or curtsey when meeting European royalty? For example, would an American girl curtsey when presented to the Queen? My husband says ‘ Americans don’t bow or curtsey because we have no sovereign and not subjects of the British Crown.’ I say ‘follow the local customs when in a different country.’ Whose right?

A: You are right. You show respect for the title and position by acknowledging it as others do. Curtseying to the Queen of England doesn’t indicate sovereignty but rather respect.

Who Takes the First bite? Knowing when to start eating in a group setting

Q: When is it appropriate, at a restaurant, to start eating before all parties are served? Is it if there are 6 or more people? 8 or more? Thanks,

A: Ideally, table service is simultaneous where everyone is served at the same time. If this isn’t the case, however, it is up to those who have not been served to insist that those who have begin eating. Otherwise, you wait.

Canceling Conundrum: Acceptable Time frame for canceling and rescheduling meetings

Q: What is an acceptable time frame to cancel or reschedule a business meeting?

A: It depends. If the meeting is local and something intervenes, it is thoughtful to cancel at least a day before. If the meeting requires travel, more time is necessary for people may have non-refundable airplane tickets, etc. so the change is more than an inconvenience, but it is a budgetary matter as well.

The Shoes stop here: How to accept the ‘no shoes’ policy

Q. I was recently in the home of close friends who announced they were going to start the ‘no shoes allowed in the home’ rule soon. I was surprised and commented ‘you aren’t serious, are you?’ They indeed are. I have always considered that rule to be downright rude and believe it communicates to the guest that the homeowners possessions are more important than they. I do not think it is hospitable. It’s their home so I guess they can do what they wish, but is there any way I can communicate my opinion without being rude? Is it rude to choose not to comply?

A. In some cultures it would be rude not to take off your shoes when entering a home.  Your friends may have very good reasons for deciding no more shoes.  It doesn’t necessarily mean that they consider their possessions more important than their friends.  It is their home and they do have the right to make rules concerning it; so next time you visit take along a pair of slipper socks and enjoy yourself.