DEAR MISS MANNERS: Recently, I have had several invitations to different parties that note at the bottom "No gifts please" or other similar phrases.
What exactly does that mean? Some have told me it means cards only; others have said it means no wrapped gifts, but that money is appropriate. Can you clarify this for me?
GENTLE READER: Which is the part that is unclear? Even forking over cash, crude as that is, constitutes a gift.
These are not coy times, when people trouble to put a veneer of decency on their greed. Miss Manners can assure you that those who mean to hit you up for money will say so.