Hello-hello, all. The Consort strolling casually mikeside to share a moment while The (lovely and talented) Princess recovers from a migraine. I hope I’m not being rude and you’ll excuse my interrupting your day. And that’s my point today: Manners.
While browsing the Wall Street Journal today I noticed an obit for Elizabeth Post. Does the name ring a bell? Perhaps her husband’s grandmother might be more familiar. Emily Post wrote “Etiquette: The Blue Book of Social Usage”, the 1922 book that has never been out of print.
Elizabeth Post updated the classic book and was a gentle guide through the turbulent 1960s, 1970s and until she retired in 1995. Her advice was grounded in the reality of the times in which we lived. But now I wonder what has become of our manners?
Many of you readers are parents. Do you pass on to your children the same etiquette lessons you learned? I had an interesting experience the other day while having a conversation with a teenager. While we were talking her cellphone rang. She stopped our talk, turned sideways to me and began a phone conversation. Perhaps I’m being overly sensitive but I couldn’t help but feel a bit put off. I was also amused by the situation of being put on “live hold” in a face-to-face convo (as the kids nowadays like to say).
One of the things we enjoy most about sending out packages from The Preppy Princess is including a handwritten note in each box. The Princess is much better at this because she is the more gifted writer in our family. Isn’t sending a note a polite thing to do? The power of the handwritten note cannot be ignored. I know I get a special feeling when I open up a note from someone who took the time to take out a notecard, pick up a pen, write down their thoughts and mail the card to me. Personalized notecards do not have to be budget-busters. We found some wonderful personalized cards that are great for fiscally responsible men or women.
I remember when I was just a Young Consort I was looking forward to my first “big” dinner-dance. It was to be a semi-formal event and I was escorting a delightful young woman. A week before the big night my parents took me to the restaurant where I would be taking my date for dinner. They wanted to make sure I was prepared to deal with ordering from a menu and how I conducted myself with our server. They reminded me to be polite, use names and not “Hey, you” and how to figure a generous tip. When I reflect on that night I realize how important that “test flight” was for me.
But enough of me. What are some of the etiquette lessons you’ve learned? Do they still apply today? Let’s share with the group.
Look at the time! I have to go check on my lovely bride so I will leave you with my usual advice: Take care of your waitperson tonight because they’re working hard for you. I’ll leave you with three gentlemen who know their way around a fretboard or two. Good night, everyone!