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Miss Manners by Judith Martin, Nicholas Ivor Martin and Jacobina Martin

It's the Thought That Counts -- but Express It Politely

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I can't wrap my mind around those who find it acceptable to attempt to coerce their friends and family members into footing the bill for some unreasonable and ridiculous event that they have planned for themselves.

For instance, my brother was "invited" (if you can call it that) to his roommate/"friend's" wedding, which he would have had to pay $1,200 to attend -- in Mexico. My brother was to be one of the "best men" in the wedding, to top it off.

Oh, but the weirdest part is yet to come: This "friend" tracks my brother's finances via snooping and eavesdropping, and when my brother declined, citing a lack of funds, Adam said, "Well, what happened to the $( ) you got from selling your car?"

After picking my jaw up off the floor, I told my brother to not-so-politely tell Adam to stick the wedding invitation where the sun doesn't shine, move out as soon as humanly possible and distance himself from this person immediately.

GENTLE READER: How shocking of you. Miss Manners would have found a decent way of expressing that thought.

(Please send your questions to Miss Manners at her website, www.missmanners.com; to her email, dearmissmanners@gmail.com; or through postal mail to Miss Manners, Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.)

Read more in: Etiquette & Ethics | Holidays & Celebrations | Friends & Neighbors