Life Advice



Tell Potential Partner Company About Website Errors

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am to meet with representatives of a company to discuss our hiring them for a project. While reviewing their website, I discovered three typos.

I honestly believe they would want to know of these errors, and frankly, as when you notice food in someone's teeth, I have a strong urge to tell them. But I fear that mentioning it...Read more

Rude Email: Better To Respond Or Ignore?

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I live in a condominium association of 241 homes that is governed by a board of owners. I am running for election to the board, having served previously as an officer.

When I sent a campaign email to the owners, I received a reply from a former board member. (He ran for reelection and lost, and is not a candidate now.) He ...Read more

Friend Puts Foot In Mouth During Video Call

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: My husband and I are both recovering from the coronavirus. At the beginning of a video call with another couple over the weekend, I asked them, How are you keeping?

And the answer came back, We are keeping a lot better than you, by the sound of it.

It certainly felt like a put-down. I let it pass because it probably would ...Read more

Dodging Questions About Acquaintance's Book

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: A gentleman I know only because he's married to an old high school classmate has written and self-published a rather long novel on a topic I know and care nothing about. In a recent online get-together with his wife and some of our other high school chums, he asked if he could pitch his book to us, then proceeded to describe ...Read more

What Counts As A 'formal Dinner'?

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: In connection with a question about butter pats, a letter writer stated, I know that dinner rolls and butter are not traditionally part of a formal dinner service. You didn't comment about that, but let it stand.

Is that true?

Please define a formal dinner for us. Is it when diners dress in cocktail dresses and evening gowns...Read more

Embarrassing Moment Just Got More Embarrassing

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I attended a meeting at work where a co-worker had a very embarrassing moment. I thought her recovery was remarkable, so I wrote an email about the incident to a friend:

Melissa farted during the presentation to the exec committee. Yikes! And of course this would happen in front of the whole team in the first-floor conference...Read more

Must I Resume Hectic In-Law Visits?

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am thankful for this past year's reprieve from family travel expectations. As an introvert, I dread those expectations coming back -- especially when my husband's mother is such a force of nature.

How is one to deal with a host who rushes her visitors from place to place, exhausting them? I wish for home immediately!

I ...Read more

When Possible, Ask For Help When Dealing With Bullies

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am a slightly built young woman, and I often become terrified when confronted by (what appear to me to be) aggressive and rude older men.

Such men have confronted me twice about supposed infractions like jumping a line, which I've never done. In the first instance, the man's daughter jumped to my defense. However, in the ...Read more

If She Won't Back Up, Just Let Her Go First

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: When I was in line at the post office, a woman stood directly behind me instead of on the plainly marked circle 6 feet away. I asked her politely to move back to the marker -- not once, but twice.

I was furious when she did not move back. She was less than 12 inches away from me. What else could I have done without causing a ...Read more

Practice The Life Skill Of 'pretending Not To Notice'

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: My classical guitar society meets online now, which is nice because we now have people involved who live around the world.

It's not so nice, however, when one of our participants performs from his bedroom, where we get to see his unmade bed, the dresser drawers partially open, and this week, a pair of used underwear.

I know ...Read more

Pandemic's Smaller, Warmer Weddings Could Be Here To Stay

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

GENTLE READERS: What will the post-pandemic wedding be like?

For couples who postponed getting married because of restrictions on crowds, it will presumably be that same pre-pandemic extravaganza:

Three days of parties, invitations to everyone in their personal and business contact files, four-figure (as in money) dresses, bevies of attendants...Read more

Toddler Dominates Family Video Chats

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: My sister and I are very close, and we chat about every other week. About a year ago, she moved across the country, so now (and especially with COVID) we don't have the chance to see each other in person.

She is married and is her daughter's primary caregiver, so she has her hands full. When I initiate a phone call, it ...Read more

Celebrity Comparison Rankles

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: On a frequent basis, I'm told I look like a former television personality who got caught up on the wrong side of the #MeToo movement. This person is considered attractive by many, so I should be flattered. However, this person is several years older than I am, so it doesn't necessarily make me feel great.

I realize people are...Read more

Friend Might Be Lying, But You Were Definitely Rude

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am a flight attendant with a major airline. However, one of my lifelong dreams is to finish school and become a registered nurse. When the pandemic began, I had the opportunity to take a leave of absence, and I applied to a nursing program to get my degree.

For about the past four years, I've been friends with a co-worker ...Read more

Can I Ask About My Hairstylist's Vaccine Status?

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: During the pandemic, there are a lot of services that I've forgone out of an abundance of caution. Now that the vaccine is rolling out, I'm looking forward to resuming a lot of these activities -- like getting my hair cut, returning to my personal trainer and visiting my therapist in person.

I'm in the last category that will...Read more

Time To De-Escalate This Non-Fight

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: My wife and I were watching the news when our adult daughter called on the landline. My wife answered, and I muted the TV as she returned to her chair for what ended up being a 15-minute conversation.

When she ended the call, she saw that I was a little annoyed. She asked why, and I said that I thought she was being rude by ...Read more

Keep Camera On -- But Only If You Can Look Interested

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: During normal times, we refrained from turning our backs on people speaking to us, or from looking elsewhere the entire time. Now, online, I attend speaker events in which the audience is primarily comprised of black boxes with or without their names listed. For the speaker, the lack of facial responses must be difficult, as ...Read more

Should Daughter Invite Distant Father To Wedding?

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: My daughter is getting married. Her biological dad and I divorced when she was about 2, and I've been with her stepfather since she was 4. Her biological father was in her life very (VERY) sporadically the first few years, and then he wasn't at all.

He tried to reconnect when she was in her early 20s, but it was awkward for ...Read more

Formal Lessons Preferable To 'helpful' Interruptions

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: How can I help my girlfriend learn to use the correct words during our conversations in English without constantly correcting her?

When I interrupt her to suggest the correct words, it appears to be more frustrating than helpful for her.

GENTLE READER: Much like with autocorrect, alternate suggestions while one is trying to ...Read more

Run Your B&B Like The Business It Is

Life Advice / Miss Manners /

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I have owned a very lovely bed and breakfast in a boutique community for 15 years now. In the last year, I have noticed an upswing in guests being wantonly destructive.

For example, we had a woman dye her hair bright red in her bathroom sink and then wipe her hands on the vintage wallpaper, leaving unfixable stains. This ...Read more



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