Graduates Lack Gratitude
DEAR MISS MANNERS: Over the past several years, I've received graduation announcements from perhaps half a dozen high school seniors whose parents I know. I've sent them my congratulations as well as a modest cash gift. Not one of them has acknowledged or thanked me.
Is it wrong to give up on the future graduates of my acquaintances and decide not to acknowledge any new announcements? Is it wrong to punish them for the rudeness of their predecessors?
GENTLE READER: Yes, but it is so tempting. No doubt they found your modest donation unworthy of their thanks, if they even recognized the need for it.
But Miss Manners assures you that you do not need to test that theory by increasing the amount. Perhaps instead, you can send any future graduates your heartfelt congratulations only -- and leave them shaking out the letter in vain.
DEAR MISS MANNERS: Is it OK to ask, on a first date, "What kind of car do you drive?"
GENTLE READER: Only if it is in order to identify it when they pick you up for a second one.
DEAR MISS MANNERS: How do I convince a dinner guest to please sit down and NOT insist on cleaning my kitchen after a meal?
It happened again last night. I worked a full day, came home, worked with my spouse to create a nice meal, enjoyed some entertaining dinner company, and then was ready to do some rudimentary cleaning and leave the rest until the next day.
But one of the guests insisted, despite my entreaties, on taking over my sink and cleaning every last dish (very slowly!). I had to stand in the kitchen, attempting to "help" -- hard to do when someone else has taken over the sink -- while listening to my other guests' gales of laughter in the living room.
Really, I can clean the kitchen anytime, but the reason I have guests over is to enjoy their company. I don't feel I can abandon one of my guests to scrub away in the kitchen while I go sit with the others and enjoy the reason I invited them over in the first place.
Last night my feet were hurting from a full day of work, and by the time I was finally able to go sit with my other guests, they were getting ready to leave. And that's to say nothing of the fact that my guest had cleaned things "wrong," according to my way of doing things (putting good knives in the dishwasher, etc.).
How does one convince a dinner guest that one would REALLY, REALLY rather that they leave the dishes and come join the party?
GENTLE READER: "No, no, you are so kind, but I forbid it. Please go enjoy the other guests, as I plan to do. I promise you that if there are still dishes left in the sink tomorrow, you can come back and clean them then."
And then Miss Manners suggests you close the kitchen door, throw yourself in front of it or put up the doggy-proof gate for added emphasis.
(Please send your questions to Miss Manners at her website, www.missmanners.com; to her email, firstname.lastname@example.org; or through postal mail to Miss Manners, Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.)
Copyright 2022 Judith MartinCOPYRIGHT 2022 JUDITH MARTIN