“I Have to Say”

Never begin a speech or sentence with, “I have to say”. You do not have to say anything.

Pay heed to the words in the self portrait of 17th century Italian Baroque painter, Salvatore Rosa, “Aut tace aut loquere meliora silento”. When translated means, “Be quiet, unless your speech be better than silence”.

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Why Do We Pull Out A Lady’s Chair?

Have you ever wondered why we pull out a lady’s chair as she is being seated at the dinner table?

This act of social etiquette stemmed from the days when the attire of high society women was so elaborate and restrictive, they needed assistance being seated at the table.

I think of comedic scene in the musical, “My Fair Lady”, when Eliza arrives at the Ascot Gavotte in a very form fitting gown and has to slide into her chair sideways because her gown did not allow her to sit down in a manner she was familiar with.

Most social attire worn today is not as restrictive as it was in days past unless it is a costume, but we still continue with the tradition of helping a lady with her chair as a demonstration of respect.


Eliza at the Ascot


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Wedding Receiving Lines are Not Optional for Guests

If you are attending a wedding you are expected to go through the receiving line.  This is a wonderful opportunity to wish the newlyweds well and share in their joyous celebration.

I frequently hear excuses such as, “I don’t want to wait in that long line” or “I’ve been invited by my date and don’t know anyone”.

You accepted the invitation to attend the wedding.  Please accept the responsibility of helping the wedding couple, their families, and attendants share their joy with you.  If you don’t know everyone in the line, take this opportunity to introduce yourself.

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Don’t Touch This – Car Etiquette

If you are a passenger in a vehicle, do not touch the stereo. Do not change the station, the volume, or the source.

You may only touch the stereo if the driver says, “Would you like to select the music?”, or any phrase similar.

Old Radio Tuning

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Leprechaun Etiquette for St. Patrick’s Day

In the event you come across a leprechaun on St. Patrick’s Day, it’s imperative you follow proper leprechaun protocol while interacting with the leprechaun.  Not doing so, could mean many years of unwanted bad luck.

When meeting  a leprechaun:

  1. Always look a leprechaun in the eye, it is polite and it forces him to tell you the truth about where his gold is.
  2. Never take your eyes off of him: leprechauns are extremely fast and if you look away for one second, he will escape.
  3. Don’t be too greedy: if you catch a leprechaun, you can ask for a pot of gold, but just the one.

    playing violin

“May your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow, And may trouble avoid you, wherever you go.” -Irish Blessing

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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Common Sense Etiquette – PJ’s Are For Bedtime

Pajamas should be worn in bed and while lounging at home.

CommoImage result for free photo of pajamasn Sense Etiquette: DO NOT wear PJ’s to the store, restaurant, gas station, school, or any other public place.  Do not wear them in the car either.  If you have car problems, you may have to get out of the car and step into public view.

Always show respect for yourself.  Dress appropriately.

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Thank You to All Who Have Served Our Country

To all the men, women, and families who have served, thank you for your sacrifices; for protecting our families and freedom.

Today and everyday, we honor your service.

Happy Veterans Day!

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Crying Babies Etiquette

Children are not born with proper manners.  They must be taught these skills as they grow and become ready to practice them in social situations.  Until children are able to execute proper manners on their own, their parents must oversee their behavior so they are not rude, disrespectful, or disruptive to others.

One of the first behaviors parents must pay attention to and monitor is crying.  Crying is the only way  babies can communicate their needs.  They are trying to tell the people around them they are uncomfortable and need something.  Parents should not ignore this communication for the well being of the baby.  They also need to be aware of how the crying is effecting the people around them and not have a self entitlement attitude. This is especially important when the crying takes place in public such as a restaurant, theater, church, store, funeral, wedding, or any presentation – such as the one Donald Trump was giving yesterday for his campaign.

A respectful, mindful, adult would not sit in an audience and start screaming gibberish while someone is speaking or performing.  This would be distracting to the speaker and other audience members.  Why then, do people think it is acceptable for a baby?  At the point when a baby cannot be consoled to stop crying, an adult needs to display manners and take the responsibility to remove the baby from the area where it is being disruptive to others.  Yes, it is a sacrifice to the parent.  They may miss part of the wedding, church service, play, dinner, or, in yesterday’s case, Donald Trump’s speech.  But taking a crying baby out of the room, without being asked, is one of the responsible sacrifices of being a parent.


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Two Groom Wedding – Can You Wear White?

More states are now recognizing same-sex marriages.  We now find ourselves navigating through unfamiliar and new social rules.  The question of wearing white to a wedding with two grooms is not new in regard to traditional rules.  Even though there is not an actual bride wearing a white gown in the wedding party, it is not appropriate to wear white to any wedding unless you are the bride. thKeep the focus of the day on the grooms and select a color other than the traditional bride’s white for the event.  You do not want to appear as though you’re playing the role of a bride.

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Debate Etiquette

A debate is an opportunity to formally discuss opposing opinions on a partithcular topic in public or legislative assemblies.   Debaters should handle themselves with dignity and show respect for their opponents at all times.

I am disappointed to report dignity and respect have been absent in the most recent highly viewed presidential debates.  The behavior of some of the candidates has been appalling and embarrassing. Our leaders, and potential leaders, at all levels of government should always display the highest level of conduct when speaking in public.  The world is watching.  America is watching.  Young people, who are tomorrow’s leaders, are watching.

We cannot continue to accept low standards for the presidential candidate debates.  This is not regularly televised entertainment.  This is the future of  THE United States of America.

Here are a few basic etiquette tips to follow in any debate setting: (If we’re lucky, a presidential candidate will stumble upon them and implement them in their next debate opportunity so we are not subjected to poor behavior again.)

  1. Never publicly disagree or argue with the mediator.
  2. Never offend, disrespect, or insult another debater or mediator.
  3. Do not speak out of turn or interrupt another debater or mediator.
  4. Present facts truthfully.  Do not falsify or distort the facts.
  5. Stay focused on the topic or question up for debate.
  6. Do not become emotional in your appeals.
  7. Control your tone of voice.
  8. Avoid quarreling and bickering. Do not point fingers at anyone.
  9. Focus on the topic, not another debater or mediator.
  10. Avoid personal attacks.
  11. Do not discuss physical attributes or limitations.

There are complete books written on the art of debate.  The above tips only brush the surface of the topic.  Always use the Golden Rule.  Treat the other person in the same manner you wish to be treated.  Act dignified and show respect.



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