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How to word a party invitation without sounding tacky?

My husband mentioned to me some years ago that he'd never had an actual, cake-and-candles, friends from the neighborhood invited, hats and horns birthday party in his entire life. I'd like to give him a small surprise birthday party for his upcoming birthday in late March, but I have questions about how to actually word the invitations. [more inside]
posted by Oriole Adams on Feb 26, 2013 - 14 answers

 

My dream wedding is a courthouse ceremony

We've decided to get married. Yay! I am the female half of a straight couple, if that matters. In the near future, we want to go to our local (US) courthouse and have a civil ceremony with just a judge and our immediate families present: his parents, my parents, his sibling+partner, my sibling+partner+child. Later this year, we'll throw an informal party and invite our extended circles to that as a larger celebration/reception. Our immediate families are supportive of this plan and just want us to be happy, but I have already gotten some pushback from friends and it gave me pause. So I guess I have questions about the practicality and etiquette of our plan and... whatever else we haven't thought about. Neither of us has been married before. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Feb 26, 2013 - 53 answers

Human male social etiquette question.

I've asked a couple questions about building a richer social life on AskMeta, and a few times I've gotten the suggestion that I should be spending more one-on-one time with friends and acquaintances. My observations suggest that women socialize this way more often than men do. Tell me I'm wrong, then share tips. [more inside]
posted by Nomyte on Feb 21, 2013 - 16 answers

Hostess gift for a lunch tomorrow?

A coworker who I don't know all that well has invited me to lunch at her house. There are only going to be the two of us. She is not a drinker to the best of my knowledge so I think my standby bottle of wine is out (is it?) She is in her early - mid 60s and fairly formal and reserved. Failing wine, what else should I bring? Flowers? A plant? Would cookies be okay? She has been having a rough time lately healthwise and is I think rather lonely and down. I asked her what I could bring and she said "Oh nothing! Just yourself!" but let's ignore that.
posted by mygothlaundry on Feb 19, 2013 - 22 answers

It's yo' cat / It's yo' problem!

CatLivingFilter: One of my roommate's two cats has become very attached to me, probably because my roommate (by his own admission) inherited the cat from an ex relationship and never really liked it that much. That's cool--I like cats, and cats like me. What I don't like is that the cat has become so attached that it will yell inconsolably outside my door, scratch at my door, and sometimes even bash into my door in despair of not being in my room. This has become a major sleep disrupting problem for me. What can I reasonably expect my roommate to do to respond to this situation? [more inside]
posted by The Sock Puppet Sentience Movement on Feb 14, 2013 - 35 answers

Help me be gracious about my art

I have some talent at drawing, but I'm awful at accepting compliments about it, and paranoid about coming off as arrogant (...I could barely type the word 'talent' just then). Help me be less awkward and accept compliments with more dignity! [more inside]
posted by cucumber patch on Feb 13, 2013 - 24 answers

blogs about contra dancing?

Could the hive mind recommend blogs or other writing about contra dance? I'm especially interested in discussions of technique, etiquette/custom/tradition, and calling. I've previously enjoyed Jeff Kaufman's blog and The Contra Syncretist.
posted by d. z. wang on Jan 21, 2013 - 4 answers

How to politely ask for a letter of recommendation?

How should I approach asking for a letter of recommendation when the letter writer doesn't write well in English? [more inside]
posted by tomtheblackbear on Jan 20, 2013 - 7 answers

Call before dropping by, is this a regional thing?

My fiance and I have different opinions about visiting and whether or not we should call first. I'm not saying either of us are right or wrong, but I'm wondering if it's a regional thing. [more inside]
posted by patheral on Jan 15, 2013 - 74 answers

Coffee 101: sociology and technology

I don't drink coffee and most of my friends don't either, but I'd like to be able to offer a nice cup to occasional visitors who do drink coffee. What type of small-scale coffee maker would be a good choice: some kind of drip and filter method? French press? Should I buy a small amount of decent quality ground coffee and hope that it keeps well between coffee drinkers? (And what would be a safe, crowd-pleasing choice?) Or should I just forget offering potentially mediocre coffee and offer everyone tea and tisanes?
posted by The True Wheel on Jan 13, 2013 - 41 answers

Keeping a beard respectable

My friend is growing a beautiful bushy beard and moustache. After several months it's wonderfully luxuriant. But, it's got to the stage where he can't eat without spillage. As for soup, forget about it - he can hardly have a mouthful before he has to wield a napkin and wipe spoonfuls away. My friend is very elegant and finds this sloppiness excruciating, especially in public. [more inside]
posted by glasseyes on Jan 11, 2013 - 21 answers

How to tell a reviewer they are wrong?

I am an academic, and I need advice on how to word my response to a review for a journal article. [more inside]
posted by pamplemousse of love on Jan 10, 2013 - 22 answers

Outgoing phone call protocol - how does it work?

When you make a call to a service or business, say, you're calling because you have a problem or require a service -- what do /you/ say? [more inside]
posted by Feel the beat of the rhythm of the night on Jan 8, 2013 - 32 answers

What's the etiquette on having friends visit when you're coughing?

Social-Awkwardness filter: I'm a formerly shy person who's recently been getting out there and making friends. I've been sick for the past week. A few people have asked to come over/hang out despite this. I want to know what the etiquette is when you have a persistent cough that borders on retching. Do the people who try to hang out anyway really not care or are they just being polite? Am I going to alienate people by rejecting their multiple attempts to see me? I don't understand why they wouldn't just end up being disgusted by me constantly coughing and sneezing and blowing my nose and being a sick person. [more inside]
posted by Pericardium on Jan 7, 2013 - 27 answers

I like you, but I hate the gifts..

Is there a polite way to tell your significant other that you absolutely hate the gifts you've received from them for holiday? But wait!! I'm not being snooty for the reasons you'd think I would! More inside.. [more inside]
posted by baconandvodka on Dec 29, 2012 - 68 answers

What do *I* do at a pedicure?

Manicure/pedicure etiquette: What exactly do you do during the process? [more inside]
posted by aaanastasia on Dec 22, 2012 - 18 answers

lunchtime etiquette

Is it kinda assholey to ask someone to leave their desk when they're eating lunch? [more inside]
posted by phoenix_rising on Dec 21, 2012 - 63 answers

I'm not Mrs Him!

I am not Mrs Myhusband'sfirstinitial Myhusband'slastname. I keep getting Christmas cards that suggest I am. Is there any way of nicely asking people not to do this that isn't rude or churlish? [more inside]
posted by raspberry-ripple on Dec 20, 2012 - 129 answers

How to put other night-time pedestrians at ease?

I walk to and from work down residential streets. It's dark, especially in Winter. Evidently I walk faster than most other pedestrians as I'm often passing them, not vice-versa. Is there a way to reassure these other pedestrians that I am not hurrying up behind them to rob/murder/kidnap them? [more inside]
posted by TangoCharlie on Dec 6, 2012 - 54 answers

I do have some pretty stationery...

Do I need to write a thank you for the interview note under these unique circumstances? [more inside]
posted by Jess the Mess on Dec 3, 2012 - 7 answers

Can I go to a sing-along concert of the Messiah and not sing along?

Can I go to a sing-along concert of Handel's Messiah and not sing along? [more inside]
posted by colfax on Nov 23, 2012 - 14 answers

Facebook Etiquette with in-laws in mind

I am British. I have recently acquired American in-laws. They are a traditionally Republican family. I, like many Europeans, consider the current iteration of the Republican Party has passed so far beyond the pale as to no longer be a rational organisation. So I saw a post-election graphic on Facebook I would normally have shared, but...I'm wondering how this new branch of family will perceive that. [more inside]
posted by glasseyes on Nov 16, 2012 - 46 answers

To send condolences or not?

My ex-boyfriend's dad just passed away. What, if anything, should I do? [more inside]
posted by csox on Nov 16, 2012 - 24 answers

Business etiquette landmines to avoid when making a sales pitch to Japanese business owners.

Business etiquette landmines to avoid when making a sales pitch to Japanese business owners. [more inside]
posted by 256 on Nov 14, 2012 - 7 answers

Share house shower etiquette? (In Japan)

I am a guy living in a co-ed sharehouse in Japan. I may have committed a faux pas, and would like to know proper sharehouse shower etiquette. Details inside. [more inside]
posted by Kamelot123 on Nov 14, 2012 - 18 answers

Writing a thank-you, with a side of hurricane sympathy?

I've got a thank-you note to write to a friend of my parents'-- already quite late, since the gift was given early last month. Difficulty: since then, the recipient's house was damaged fairly badly by Hurricane Sandy, and she's been struggling with the aftermath. I feel like her current rough situation warrants some sort of extra gesture or comment beyond the usual thank-you boilerplate, but what might that be? [more inside]
posted by Bardolph on Nov 9, 2012 - 8 answers

Call me maybe

You: a professor. I: student/applicant for your program. How do you feel about phone contact? Details inside. [more inside]
posted by kettleoffish on Nov 6, 2012 - 16 answers

Letitia Baldrige died for my sins

We are very, very late with our wedding thank-yous. Over a year. We know we are horrible people, okay? Now what? [more inside]
posted by Madamina on Nov 6, 2012 - 32 answers

Bad manners to go to a dinner with casual aquaintances when you have a cold?

It's 3pm now. Going to an event, a dinner, that starts at 6pm hopefully, but I have a cold. Might it turn out that I am unwelcome at the event if I go? Thing is, I know exactly who gave me the cold and don't really thank them for it. Is it bad etiquette to go to something like this if you have a cold? They are not friends or anything that I would otherwise be exposed to. [more inside]
posted by Nish ton on Nov 3, 2012 - 24 answers

Should I pick up other dogs' poop while walking my dogs?

Should I pick up other dogs' poop while walking my dogs? I pick up my own dogs' poop but I don't pick up other poops when I am on walks. Am I being clueless when I step over another dog's poop without picking it up? [more inside]
posted by dottiechang on Nov 1, 2012 - 35 answers

Is maintaining one's boundaries beyond the bounds of etiquette?

How does the etiquette concept that "The only thing ruder than rudeness is pointing out said rudeness" not imply letting oneself get walked all over? Help me understand this, if you would? [more inside]
posted by Someone Else's Story on Oct 27, 2012 - 21 answers

"I wouldn't miss it" won't work either...

Introvert needs help with social niceties at a funeral. [more inside]
posted by miaou on Oct 24, 2012 - 16 answers

Take the money and drive?

I've been asked to speak at a student group at my old college, which is about 100 miles away. They've offered to pay for my gas; should I accept, or would it be more charitable to decline?
posted by adverb on Oct 23, 2012 - 14 answers

hostess gift in a hurry

What's an appropriate hostess gift in this situation? [more inside]
posted by homodachi on Oct 21, 2012 - 10 answers

Another one rides the bus

What's the correct way to ride the bus and get off at a certain stop? [more inside]
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis on Oct 9, 2012 - 28 answers

Secretary job interview secrets?

I would like some help preparing for job interview. Are there any secretaries here that can please help me out? [more inside]
posted by Groundhog Week on Oct 1, 2012 - 10 answers

We'd like that gift NOW, please

Several months ago, for my partner's birthday, my MIL decided to gift us with an electric kettle. We were happy, because we had been planning to get one, and said as much to her. But then she couldn't find the "right one" (she's quite particular about aesthetics) and now the whole idea seems to have slipped off her radar. But the winter is approaching, we're making a lot of tea, and we would really really like to have that kettle. Do we remind her, buy it ourselves, or what? [more inside]
posted by gakiko on Sep 28, 2012 - 28 answers

my business ain't nobody's business

Help me write a funny, effective, non-shaming sign asking people to please not talk on their cellphones in the office restroom. [more inside]
posted by elizeh on Sep 27, 2012 - 27 answers

I'm not trying to buy your affection but here's some cash

I am visiting my boyfriend's family for Christmas. His parents and two of his younger brothers (still in school) will be there, and I've met each of them very briefly. They celebrate Christmas with gift exchanges, but I was thinking about giving them cash, partly because I feel I don't know them well, partly because I don't want to travel with lots of boxes, and partly because cash is a perfectly acceptable gift in my culture (for New Year's Day). I've asked my boyfriend and he seemed lukewarm, but not entirely against it. Is this an absolutely horrible idea? If it's not, what is a good amount that says I'm not stingy, but also also not trying to bribe them?
posted by ethidda on Sep 26, 2012 - 39 answers

How should I address wedding invitations to significant others of my friends?

How should I address wedding invitations to significant others of friends? [more inside]
posted by mai on Sep 25, 2012 - 14 answers

How do I thank a recruiter who didn't end up placing me?

I have been using a professional recruiter. If I end up taking a position that I didn't find through them, what the best way to thank/compensate them for their effort? [more inside]
posted by i am a sock puppeteer on Sep 25, 2012 - 9 answers

Help Me Cope With a Noisy Eater

I have about three weeks to come up with a game plan on how I'm going to deal with a noisy coworker's return to our shared desk space. What would you do? [more inside]
posted by These Birds of a Feather on Sep 25, 2012 - 18 answers

Wow, I've finally found something that was easier to do with the twins when they were toddlers.

Help me navigate the etiquette of my twin boys' upcoming birthday party. [more inside]
posted by terrierhead on Sep 24, 2012 - 19 answers

Mailman Etiquette

I order many things online and get lots of packages. I really like my mailman. Is there something nice I can do for him? [more inside]
posted by insectosaurus on Sep 20, 2012 - 13 answers

I eat fast, maybe too fast.

I eat very quickly. I enjoy my food well enough, but I seem to enjoy it at a rapid pace, which can be a bit awkward in company. Is there an easy mental realignment to eat slower? [more inside]
posted by jackbishop on Sep 19, 2012 - 23 answers

What does the couple who has everything register for?

We live in a tiny Manhattan apartment and have everything we need. What do we register for? [more inside]
posted by alicetiara on Sep 19, 2012 - 37 answers

Dear Ms. Wilson and Messrs. Smith, Willians, Jones, and Davis,

I need to address a formal letter to five recipients of different rank and gender at once. How? [more inside]
posted by Nameless on Sep 14, 2012 - 22 answers

I hear the espresso's really cheap in this joint

Paying for first dates: who should do it? [more inside]
posted by Miss T.Horn on Sep 13, 2012 - 86 answers

Southern U.S. use of "Miss [FirstName]" -- racial or class connotations?

Southern Naming Conventions: Is there a race or class component to the Southern U.S. use of "Miss [FirstName]" (when used by adults to refer to other adults)? Which groups use this, when, and what does it connote when employed between/among races or social classes? [more inside]
posted by jjjjjjjijjjjjjj on Sep 11, 2012 - 50 answers

Wedding Filter: How do you seat divorced parents at a wedding?

Wedding Filter: How do you seat divorced parents at a wedding? [more inside]
posted by wcmf on Sep 10, 2012 - 31 answers

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