I came across this article on the interwebs the other day listing 20 new etiquette rules of dining.
It seems that our grandmother’s strictures of ‘don’t speak with your mouth full’ and ‘sit up and don’t slump’ are no longer enough to make us polite and welcome at dinners with instructions about our use of electronic equipment, our dietary fads and finicks, even what we should wear when we go out, all coming in for criticism and new rules.
Actually, I’m all in favour of this. I have a fabulous bookclub, filled with interesting women but catering for them is a nightmare with 1 paleo, 4 Banting, 2 gluten-free, 1 vegetarian and 1 no-tomatoes amongst us - thank goodness we can all drink wine is all I can say!
We also used to laugh at people coming out to our restaurant and spending all their time on their phones– I swear, some of those people were tweeting each other across the table rather than actually talking to each other!
And how about photographing food? Is it totally unacceptable or just what happens in modern-day dining life?
I have to confess that I am not the greatest at leaving my phone in my bag when I dine – and my husband gets very annoyed about it too. But then again – he doesn’t eat onions, and if I had known what a disaster that is, I would never have gone out with him in the first place so I guess we are about even!
Our goal now, is to try and restrain ourselves from passing on our bad habits to our son and make sure that he is fit to eat out anywhere, both now (see my guide to kids eating in fine dine restaurants– and check the comments!) and in the future.
So with that in mind, I’m making a big effort to eat more family meals this month.
My heart has been totally warmed by dishes such as Creamy Chicken Livers, Mozzarella and Mushroom Omelette and my all-time favourite Carrot Cake and I am totally inspired to sit with my family and enjoy an evening in their company.
Without cellphones, without Phineas & Ferb in the background, with lots of conversation and a possibly a large pile of fried onions on the side – if I’m making an effort, my husband bloody well can too!