Advertisement

Thanksgiving Day dinner etiquette

November 20, 2000

Thanksgiving Day dinner etiquette



By JOE ARCH


Thanksgiving may be the first time you have dinner with your significant other's family. With this big step, questions begin to surface. What should you wear? How should you act? What should you eat? What if you don't like the food? What if they don't like you?

continued

To ease your fears and give you some guidance, we talked to Denna Smith of Inwood Performing Arts Center; Karen Yeager Rupprecht, the author of "Miss Prudence Pennypack's Perfectly Proper" and "A Month of Manners"; and Mac Dawson, a guidance counselor at Hancock Middle/Senior High School.

Here are their suggestions:

1. Make a good impression. Even if you've already met the family, dress appropriately. A dress shirt and pair of khakis will do. Don't make an appearance in a T-shirt and blue jeans.

2. Wait to be introduced. After the introduction, be polite. "Thank you for having me," is a nice ice breaker. You don't have to come bearing gifts, but if you want to, here are some ideas: chocolates, flowers, a candle or even a jar of jelly. Don't go all out. Just show you appreciate being there.

Advertisement

3. When dinner begins, remember that you are the guest at their table. Wait until the hostess sits first. Do not reach or grab for food; wait until it is passed to you. Wait to be offered seconds. Don't just take them.

4. Holding a conversation is important - both at the table and afterward. When asked a question, try to answer it in a complete thought. Responses such as "no" and "yes" or nods of the head are not adequate. Remember, you're trying to make an impression to show you are good enough for their son or daughter.

5. At the end of the meal, don't just leave. The dine and dash is not acceptable. If the family asks you to sit and relax for a while, accept the invitation. They've taken the time to prepare for you. Show some gratitude by staying and talking with them.

6. When the night finally comes to an end, once again thank your hosts and be on your way.

Joe Arch is a student at Hagerstown Community College.

The Herald-Mail Articles
|
|
|