From the category archives:

Everyday

Q: I noticed that a close friend of mine always responds to ‘excuse me’ with ‘certainly.’  I asked her about it and she said that her mother taught her that it was the proper response.  I have never heard anyone else say that.  Now she and I are both wondering if this is simply an […]

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Q: I work near someone who chews his gum so loudly I find I can’t focus on anything but the noise.  It is very irritating.  What can I do?  Is there a way that I can tactfully bring the issue to this person’s attention?   A: You need to be confidential and direct.  Tell him […]

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Q: Is it rude to continue eating when someone comes into one’s home who is not staying for a meal?  Recently someone came to buy a piece of furniture we were selling.  During the discussion, my son walking in eating a bowl of ice cream.  I thought it was rude, but my wife said it […]

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Q: My friend and I are in a heated debate about whether or not it is proper etiquette to put the toilet seat back down after use.  Could you put our query to rest?   A: In a unisex bathroom, the toilet seat should be put down as a courtesy to a woman who may […]

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Q: I have a serious girlfriend that likely a few years from now I will become engaged to and marry.  She’s curious about my finances, and I don’t feel that it’s appropriate to be asking about my finances already.  I’m a lawyer, so my financial future is not bleak.  Is it appropriate for one to […]

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Q: I am giving a presentation over formal dinners in a training class next week.  I have an old copy of the Emily Post book from 1960 and according to a page of pictures the progression of a meal is soup, fish, meat, salad, and finally dessert.  I have never encountered a meal that had […]

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Q: I know of many people who blow their noses while dining with others.  No one seems to be bothered by this.  Does that mean that this is correct?   A: Nose-blowing at the table should be limited to small puffs.  If what is required is big, noisy nose-blowing, this should be conducted away from […]

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Q: A man picks up a female friend and gives her a ride to a destination (they are both going to the same place).  She sits in the front as the car’s only other passenger.  Next he picks up his girlfriend. Where does his girlfriend sit and what is the rule of etiquette to guide […]

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Q: What are the rules for eating in public? My older friend said she was taught not to eat or drink while shopping.  I have gone walking down the hall at work while eating a banana and I am now wondering if this is improper?   A: Yes, it is not appropriate to eat or […]

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Q: I loaned out my chocolate fountain on New Year’s Eve to a family member.  What is the etiquette of loaning items?   A: When anyone, whether it be a family member, a friend, or a neighbor, borrows an item, they should return the item as soon as possible.In your case, your relative should have […]

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