DEAR MISS MANNERS: When my sister was married, one of her friends attended the wedding but did not bring a gift. In the days that followed the wedding, the guest told my sister "I can't believe your parents didn't come around to each table."
My sister was amazed that this friend would make such a comment, especially since she had not followed etiquette to bring a gift for the bride and groom. I find her comment about our parents rude and almost unbelieveable, considering she is "calling the kettle black"!
I am now planning a baby shower for my sister, and she's asked that I invite this same woman. Since they work together, I think my sister feels obligated to invite her to "keep the peace," based on others who will be invited.
If this woman arrives to the baby shower without a gift, how should I handle the situation?
GENTLE READER: Do all of you believe that etiquette is a battering ram for you to use as a weapon against one another?
It is customary for wedding guests to give presents and for wedding hosts to greet their guests. However, the rudeness of omitting these courtesies is nothing compared to the rudeness of confronting one another with failure to do so. You deplored it's being done to your family, and yet you seem to expect Miss Manners to sanction your doing this in return.
How you handle the situation of guests' arriving, with or without presents, is with a smile and a greeting.
DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am a recent college grad and have been applying for jobs online. Most of these jobs require that applicants send a resume to an email address, and there is no number to call or an address (to apply in person).
I have received very few responses or even replies that they received my resume, which is the problem. I don't know if it wound up in a spam folder or was deleted.
If that is the case, I would like to send it again. But if they received it and just didn't want to hire me, I wouldn't want to send it again and seem like a pest.
If you apply for a job online, shouldn't they at least let you know they received your resume, even if they don't hire you, so at least you would know it didn't disappear in cyberworld? What do you think?
GENTLE READER: Yes, they should. But nowadays, businesses plead understaffing -- compounded by the great number of people looking for work -- to excuse the lack of feedback they give to job applicants. As if they had never heard of using form replies, which is easier than ever with e-mail -- and as if they hadn't been just as unresponsive when times were flush.
Beleaguered as they are, they are not likely to be noticeably worse off if you resend your message, mentioning that you had not heard back. Miss Manners has heard that some employers consider persistence to be a virtue.