DEAR MISS MANNERS: I happen to be very good at remembering names and faces of people to whom I have been introduced before. I have noticed, however, that this is not a universal trait.
If you are introduced to someone or if someone comes up and introduces themselves to you, and you distinctly remember having met them before, what is the proper response? Do you play along and act as though you are indeed meeting them for the first time, or is there a gentle way of letting them know that you have met before without leaving them feeling embarrassed for not remembering you?
GENTLE READER: Have you considered running for public office? Being able to remember people's names is gold for politicians, and if you won, you might not have the problem of people's not remembering yours.
Miss Manners also has a less strenuous and less expensive way for you to help your less fortunate fellow citizens. That is to advance on them announcing your name and where you met, giving them the opportunity to say, "Yes, yes, of course," just as if they had remembered.
DEAR MISS MANNERS: What happened to the "rule" that said family members do not host bridal or baby showers?
GENTLE READER: Nothing happened to the rule; it's still there. It is the sense that it is cheeky to ask for presents for your relatives that something happened to.
DEAR MISS MANNERS: What is the proper etiquette for a mother who is insufferable?
Currently my father is ill and all the talk is what my mother had to suffer -- how much she stayed up late, how far she had to drive -- along with the running commentary, while my father is gravely ill, of how fat all my sisters and I are, what color nail polish we are using, what we are wearing, etc.
Worse than that is her belief that her "thinking" made him well (vs. any efforts by doctors and medications) -- her rudeness and threatening of hospital personnel, her refusal to have any religious personnel present even though my father is a religious man.
This woman abused me as a child constantly and I have no desire to have any relationship with her, particularly not one of further abuse. Anyway, this psycho says she wants me to not have a visit with my father unless I say that her methods are right and no others are necessary.
GENTLE READER: You are asking Miss Manners the wrong question. It should be "What is the proper etiquette toward a father who is gravely ill?"
The answer is to avoid embroiling him in a quarrel with the person who is taking care of him. Insufferable as your mother may be, you point out that you have been suffering her, as it were, for many years. If saying, "Sure, sure, if you say so" a few times more buys you time with your father and relieves him from suffering through a feud, it strikes Miss Manners as the decent thing to do.