Put an end to the etiquette argument

Since Adam and Eve first realized they should slap on a fig leaf if they wanted to appear in children’s picture books, humanity has realized the importance of proper manners.

I feel strongly about all things etiquette, which is why I have written the following advice Q&A — a feat never attempted before by a columnist at my skill level.

Q: Should letter writers call you Mr. Manners or Ed Etiquette or what?
- Larry Letterwriter

A: Dear Larry: The works of Emily Post tell us that the proper way to begin a letter to a newspaper columnist include, “Your Excellency,” “You sexy thing” and “You may have already won $10 million!”

Q: We have new friends we like and we want to let them know we really appreciate their friendship. If I invite them over, how do I make them feel privileged to be there?
- Chipper & Perky Smith

A: Dear Chipper and Perky: As you have new friends, I consider the question outside my expertise. I therefore asked a guy on the sidewalk, who said, “Verbal re-enforcement is key.” Constantly telling your guests, “You’re privileged to be here, you know,” in a forceful tone will make a lasting impression.

Q: Where should I put the spoon after dessert? If it’s served on a plate with a low rim, do I leave it inside the plate or on the side?
- Cornelius Hiram Flowerbottom III, Esq.

A: Dear Mr. Flowerbottom III, Esq.: I have an excellent suggestion of where you should stick your spoon. Judging from your question, however, I have reason to believe you followed that advice many years ago.

Q: I’m dating one of those ultra-cooks who demands you cut cabbage at the proper angle, constantly serves the internal organs of some creature or other and cuts radish rosettes with a speed and efficiency that makes you wonder how she obtained said internal organs. Recently, we’ve been arguing because she thinks I’m a slob and I think she’s right but don’t care. She’s been getting picky about things like the proper utensil (I think she made up the “salad spoon”). Anyway, things aren’t going well and I still haven’t made any headway with her younger sister, so what do I do to clear things up?
- Between a rock and a hot plate

A: Dear Between: The important thing to remember here is that the steak knife — placed just to the right of the napkin — is the sharpest knife. Do what you will.

Q: What’s the proper way to say goodbye to people you’ve strung along under the pretense of giving advice when you were really only filling space in a newspaper column for money?

A: So long, suckers.

Follow John Mazerolle on Twitter



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

New statue of Penn State's Paterno set for…

By David DeKokHARRISBURG, Pennsylvania (Reuters) - Fundraising for a new statue depicting Joe Paterno "as the man he was and not Joe the football coach"…

National

On newly released tape, 'Squeaky' Fromme says was…

Manson Family member Squeaky Fromme told a mental health examiner in newly released interview the "X" she carved in her forehead was meant to separate her from "the system."

Local

New York-based Century 21 store coming to The…

The former Strawbridge & Clothier building will once again host a department store. City officials on Thursday announced New York-based Century 21 Department Stores will…

National

Electric Zoo tickets on sale Tuesday as festival…

Electric Zoo tickets go on sale Tuesday. The festival announced plans to amp up security after two attendees died last year from apparent drug overdoses.

Movies

Tribeca: 'Goodbye to All That' star Paul Schneider…

Paul Schneider talks about his new film "Goodbye to All That," not acting too much and how he'd rather indulge in simple pleasures than play the scene.

The Word

Taylor Swift battles paparazzi daily at Tribeca penthouse

We're entranced by these photos of poor Taylor Swift leaving her Tribeca apartment.

Movies

Tribeca: Nikki Reed on going funny for a…

"Intramural" star Nikki Reed talks about being the straight person in a broad comedy, spending time in Austin and how "Thirteen" was a "miracle."

Movies

Interview: 'The Quiet Ones' star Sam Claflin on…

"Hunger Games" co-star Sam Claflin talks about his new horror film "The Quiet Ones," plus how technology connects him with fans.

MLB

The return of Cole Hamels brings optimism

Cole Hamels’ quality start Wednesday was a nice change of pace from his recent season debuts.

MLB

Tony Gwynn Jr. a nice surprise for Phillies

Tony Gwynn Jr. has been a plus in every way for the Phillies.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24…

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24 version

MLB

5 infamous pitcher ejections for cheating

Never fear Yankees fans, Michael Pineda is far from the first MLB pitcher to be thrown out of a game for cheating.

Food

Hai Street Kitchen opening in Rittenhouse May 22

Japanese cuisine will get a Chipotle-style twist at Hai Street Kitchen & Co., a new casual, quick-food restaurant opening near Rittenhouse Square on May 22.…

Parenting

New study: Inside the wage gap between boys…

According to a new study, there's a wage gap between boys and girls, with boys earning more allowance for less chores.

Tech

From Apple TV to Fire TV, big changes…

Apple is set to launch a new generation of it's Apple TV, which grossed over $1 billion in 2013. But competition from Amazon and Google looms.

Style

Katy Perry releases a new Claire’s collection

Katy Perry expands her empire by releasing an accessories collection at Claire's.