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How can I politely rebut "Everything happens for a reason"?

People always say, “Things happen for a reason,” or, “It was meant to be,” or, “God has a plan.” But I don’t believe any of those things, and I don’t know how to respond politely when people say them. [more inside]
posted by tatiana wishbone on Feb 8, 2011 - 89 answers

 

Dude, you're totally harshing my network connection.

I feel like a dick asking this, but is there any way to tell if my neighbors are throttling our shared internet connection with downloads? And if they are, is there any way to partition the connection so my connection's not affected? [more inside]
posted by schroedinger on Feb 3, 2011 - 24 answers

Maybe I should say no thanks in song?

Unwanted gift etiquette - What do I do with this thing now? [more inside]
posted by Popular Ethics on Jan 30, 2011 - 22 answers

Will Beethoven roll over in his grave at the sight of jeans?

Going to see an NSO performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC tonight. Does it matter what I wear? [more inside]
posted by the foreground on Jan 29, 2011 - 13 answers

Why do restaurants expect people to reuse their dirty utensils?

At many restaurants, after the starter course is finished, the waiter will remove my dirty knife and fork from the plate, and leave them for me to use with my main course. I dislike this, and usually will ask for a clean knife and fork for the next course. My question is: what is the thinking behind this? The added cost I would think is trivial, and it just seems really weird to expect people to eat a new course with food from the last course on the utensils. Is there some financial aspect to putting more utensils through the dishwasher that I'm missing?
posted by kevinsp8 on Jan 28, 2011 - 46 answers

Slightly late or slightly early?

When you're meeting up with people, should you err on the side of "slightly early" or on the side of "slightly late"? [more inside]
posted by forza on Jan 24, 2011 - 75 answers

How to Hold Open a Door

What is the proper way to hold a door for someone you are walking with? [more inside]
posted by jefficator on Jan 19, 2011 - 25 answers

What are the best follow-up techniques to use when you lose a creative pitch or proposal?

What are the best follow-up techniques to use when you lose a creative pitch or proposal? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jan 12, 2011 - 1 answer

Would you mind taking your shoes off?

If I asked you to take your shoes off when you came into our (North American) home, would you be put off? What kind of foot covering can I offer you to make it less annoying? [more inside]
posted by otherwordlyglow on Jan 4, 2011 - 222 answers

I didn't realize your girlfriend was okay with us dating, too.

Why do people go on "dates" to "get to know" other people, but not mention that they already have a significant other? [more inside]
posted by patronuscharms on Dec 28, 2010 - 32 answers

The love of money is the root of all evil.

My father-in-law may have pocketed part of a gift intended for my husband and his brother. But then again, maybe not! How can I navigate this situation with maximum tact and minimal drama? And more concretely, how does one write a thank-you note that gracefully specifies the exact amount of the gift? [more inside]
posted by yersinia on Dec 28, 2010 - 42 answers

when you hear yourself chew, is that noise as loud as it is inside your skull ?

when you hear yourself chew, is that noise as loud as it is inside your skull ? [more inside]
posted by daveg02 on Dec 28, 2010 - 17 answers

Too late to tip?

Tipping: Someone sends a big pizza delivery ($100+) to a vendor for a holiday party, but forgets to add a tip when paying over the phone. The people receiving the pizza don't give a tip. The person who ordered the pizza eventually realizes that they forgot, but not until a couple of days later. Anything to do about it, or just let it go?
posted by epersonae on Dec 23, 2010 - 22 answers

Please help me to tell people I will not always be available to them

Please help me to politely tell people that I am not available 24/7 by phone. [more inside]
posted by triggerfinger on Dec 22, 2010 - 62 answers

Whether to contact an acquaintance re: kids and cancer.

A childhood friend posted some pictures of her children today on Facebook in which it appears that her older child has a common symptom of a type of cancer. Should I contact her about it, or should I stay out of it? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Dec 17, 2010 - 24 answers

Heading to Thailand - Business etiquette or customs and things to do

I am going to be traveling to Thailand to on business for an a while and need advice on business etiquette and also fun things to do and the best places to see. I know there are guidebooks and yet I really enjoy off the beaten track scenes and local color. Should I be worried about safety as an American? This seems silly but bear with me, I just found out today and am trying to digest this....
posted by sfts2 on Dec 17, 2010 - 5 answers

Coworker changes story, should I call bullshit?

Should I call out a discrepancy in a coworker's story? The discrepancy appears designed to gain priority on our queue of work. [more inside]
posted by jacobjacobs on Dec 12, 2010 - 18 answers

Running into former colleagues after a layoff

Awkward public run-ins with coworkers who survived the company layoffs when you didn't - I need strategies for getting through the situation as gracefully as possible. [more inside]
posted by green_flash on Nov 28, 2010 - 14 answers

Knitting Group Relationship Filter

Help me figure out how to convey to the new head of my knitting group that I am really too busy until January to help with events. [more inside]
posted by miss-lapin on Nov 21, 2010 - 17 answers

Burning bridges in tacky, ignorant ways... bravo

An acquaintance asked for my help in getting his application noticed within my small-ish local branch of the company. He's been burning his bridges with me in how he's handling things - do I say something to him? [more inside]
posted by lizbunny on Nov 18, 2010 - 21 answers

how does half a dinner sound?

Wedding gift etiquette question: Should I give a gift certificate to a couple for one person's meal at a restaurant that I know the couple really wants to go to (Komi), or a gift certificate for a meal for two somewhere else, but a place that is not quite as good (Palena)? (DC-specific!) [more inside]
posted by min on Nov 12, 2010 - 26 answers

Multi-office job-hunting etiquette

I have an interview at one location of a small firm, but want to find out if there are openings at their other locations. How can I tactfully do this? [more inside]
posted by yukonho on Nov 11, 2010 - 5 answers

I want to give my prof a gift, is it okay?

Etiquette filter: I'd like to give my Creative Writing professor a gift to celebrate her new baby (due in Dec). Her and her husband are also the advisors for the Creative Writing side of the English Department, of which I'm a grad student. Am I crossing any ethical boundaries? [more inside]
posted by patheral on Nov 10, 2010 - 13 answers

Play the field or play the odds?

Multiple brand new jobs opening at my company. Was planning to apply for all of them, as they're fairly the same. However, was just told there's a particular job coming open, and supervisors want to sponsor me as the applicant of choice. Apply for one job, or apply for all? Specifics inside. [more inside]
posted by Ys on Nov 4, 2010 - 9 answers

Excessive Distribution List Use

Email Distribution Lists: we set up a bunch of distribution lists at work and guess what? They started off real useful, and now they've spiraled out of control and their effectiveness has been eclipsed by users receiving excessive amounts of email traffic. How do we get out of this? Shut them down? Police them? Re-train? [more inside]
posted by forallmankind on Nov 1, 2010 - 4 answers

Hey! That's My Creative Title!

Internet-etiquette-filter: So I have an anonymous blog that has been around for 3 years now with a very distinctive name. I just got a Google alert on the name that someone has started a new blog on Blogger (where I have the name already since I used to host with Blogger) with the exact name of my blog. Do I be a bitch about this and tell her to find a new name or do I just chill and let us peacefully coexist? [more inside]
posted by Leezie on Oct 27, 2010 - 14 answers

Check please?

I went out with a girl twice and she just sent me a Facebook message telling me that she's seeing someone else now and that she wants to take me out to dinner to pay me back for the previous dates. [more inside]
posted by Groovytimes on Oct 26, 2010 - 51 answers

What to give a mentor as a thank-you gift?

Is it appropriate to give a thank you gift to a mentor, and what can I give someone who doesn't drink, doesn't eat junk food, and doesn't like flowers? [more inside]
posted by lollusc on Oct 25, 2010 - 27 answers

Advice on visiting a Catholic Church

Dear MeFi Catholics... help...? (possibly UK specific) [more inside]
posted by sodium lights the horizon on Oct 19, 2010 - 21 answers

Is turnaround fair play when it comes to weddings?

Despite my profile name, my wife and I recently celebrated our two year anniversary. Yay! We recently received an engagement party and wedding invitation from a couple that didn't give us a gift for our wedding. Now, we're not sure how to handle the gift situation. Do we get them a gift as we would any other wedding, do we scale down the size of the gift, or do we not give a gift at all? [more inside]
posted by love is a murderer on Oct 19, 2010 - 65 answers

Thank you gift for flying 3000 miles for my dumb birthday party?

My friends flew 3000 miles to Seattle as a surprise for my 40th birthday party, and I just don't know how to thank them for what it meant to me! Friends: married couple, and the wife's sister (who I've known since she was like 10 and is now 35). They are super-cool and very not-poor and live in Brooklyn and don't need for anything, and I have no clue what I could do/give to express my thanks. [more inside]
posted by tristeza on Oct 18, 2010 - 16 answers

Quiting by Email

I need to resign my job sometime on monday - I'm taking a position at another company. Through contracts and sub-contracts, I have at least 3 different "bosses" who work at three locations - I only sit at the same location as one boss (one of the others is fairly accessible). Is submitting a resignation by email to the off-site bosses acceptable to mainstream north american business etiquette? [more inside]
posted by Deep Dish on Oct 17, 2010 - 11 answers

The unwritten code of rock concerts.

Rock concert etiquette: What are the unwritten rules of general admission, unseated shows. re: your spot. [more inside]
posted by windbox on Oct 16, 2010 - 32 answers

Help me get my wreck of a body into some kind of shape, please

I just started working out at my university's gym, but I have some difficulties and some questions... [more inside]
posted by patheral on Oct 13, 2010 - 31 answers

Broken eyeglass etiquette - who should pay?

Who is at fault and who should pay for the expensive broken eyeglasses to be fixed? [more inside]
posted by stealabove on Oct 12, 2010 - 57 answers

The fine line between 'gentleman' and 'creep'...

How do I offer to escorting my date home without sounding like I'm sleazily trying to invite myself back to her place? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Oct 7, 2010 - 38 answers

Where do I go from here with this close encounter of the non-consensual kind?

I have a problem with one of the students I tutor, but I'm not sure if he realized he crossed the line. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Oct 5, 2010 - 35 answers

So... your husband. Not a child molester, by any chance?

There is a very small, but still nonzero, chance that my brother-in-law might be a pedophile. I have a toddler daughter who is very close to her aunt. How can I tactfully gather more information about this, and how should I handle it with my family? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Oct 5, 2010 - 59 answers

How do I not stab my roommate in the face?

How do I not stab my roommate in the face? My roommate is mind numbingly annoying and I'm starting to hate her. How do I not do that? [more inside]
posted by katybird on Oct 4, 2010 - 39 answers

Returning or keeping engagement ring

Drama Alert: Question about returning an engagement ring after the engagement is called off. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Sep 29, 2010 - 42 answers

Etiquette in a Modern Age

What's the etiquette for contacting a cousin I haven't spoken to in eight years on facebook? How exactly to do it? Is it a bad idea? Unique circumstances inside. [more inside]
posted by slide on Sep 29, 2010 - 16 answers

Dear [first name / last name]

I'm applying to a job where I recently worked for 2 years. In my cover letter and statement of interest, should I refer to my former co-workers (who are much older than me) by first, last, or full name? [more inside]
posted by jejune on Sep 29, 2010 - 5 answers

Should I pay to replace a rude guest's shawl?

Does etiquette require me to replace the shawl of a dinner party guest that she ruined while out walking our property? [more inside]
posted by Nickel Pickle on Sep 27, 2010 - 171 answers

iPhone broken by a 2.5 year old

What's the etiquette consensus on paying for things broken by a relative's child? Last night my wife was at her brother's house. Their 2.5 year old boy snatched her iPhone from her hand while she was using it and smashed it against a wall, breaking the screen. [more inside]
posted by thewalrus on Sep 15, 2010 - 63 answers

Not-obvious things you shouldn't say to women

What are some not-obvious things you can't/shouldn't say to women? [more inside]
posted by pauldonato on Sep 15, 2010 - 172 answers

Cabin Feaver

How do I invite 12 people to a cabin that fits seven? [more inside]
posted by Diablevert on Sep 14, 2010 - 21 answers

Wedding fashion woes

Late September - 2pm wedding in a Catholic church (although I'm not 100% certain it's a true Catholic ceremony), with reception at 4:30pm. Is this outfit okay to wear? [more inside]
posted by shoppingforsanity on Sep 13, 2010 - 73 answers

What to do about a partially acknowledged wedding gift?

YetAnotherWeddingGiftQuestion: A month ago my husband and I attended a friend's wedding. We took our gifts to the reception (a cookbook and a set of pots and pans, wrapped in the same distinctive wrapping paper). Today we received a thank-you note - for the cookbook. Do I ask the bride and groom about the cookware? My motivation isn't "we got you this nice gift, and we want you to acknowledge it." When we got married, we received one set of china that we couldn't ever attribute to anyone, and it bugs me to this day that we couldn't properly thank the gift-giver. So, do I ask? Or just let it go? These folks are friends, but not close ones.
posted by killy willy on Sep 8, 2010 - 20 answers

Couchsurfing etiquette

Calling all CouchSurfers! As a, sort of, follow up to this question. I have a question about Couchsurfing etiquette/expectations from people who have already hosted/surfed. [more inside]
posted by prufrock on Sep 8, 2010 - 6 answers

Tipping the Driver, the Baker, the Cake Decorator?

Should I tip the person who baked, decorated, and is going to deliver the birthday cake I ordered for my boyfriend? [more inside]
posted by rhiannonstone on Sep 2, 2010 - 31 answers

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