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post #81 of 200
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by journeymom View Post

Velochic, what does all of your talk about napkins, soup and vice presidents have to do with the example family you described? The parents and their sauce-flinging 8 y.o.?  I do believe everyone here knows the difference between etiquette and manners.  Honestly it seems like you are the one mixing the two together.

I was asking if these things are taught to kids anymore.  I come from very humble roots - rural farming family, working my way through college, parents who were small children during the Great Depression, and I was still taught impeccable manners and dining etiquette even though at the time I was taught it seemed like I'd never use it.  Then, out of the blue, as poor working student, I am asked to a lunch where these minutia of dining etiquette become important... hell yeah, I'm glad my parents taught me what they did.  I wasn't bragging about having lunch with a dignitary, I was pointing out that even if you think your kids will never use them, learning the rules of etiquette can be valuable and I'm bragging on my parents for having that forethought.  All I'm saying is that, IMO, it doesn't hurt to teach your kids these things, it can only come in handy and make your kids more polite no matter where they are.  If that makes me a snob to know the rules, then hell yeah, I'm a snob.  And I'm teaching my daughter to be a snob, too, then.  Neither I nor anyone else I have ever seen have ever commented to someone or to each other if they missed a fine etiquette point.  I've never even seen someone say something about a rude child that is making the meal miserable for everyone around them.  (Show me where I said that I watch other people and comment or judge if they choose the wrong utensil.)   If you'll re-read my OP, I said that this incident got me to thinking about what is being taught to kids these days.  I know what we do in our family, but obviously some parents are not even teaching their kids manners.  I was wondering why.  And yes, I'm mixing the two together because I think even if parents aren't teaching finer points, then at least teach them basic manners so they don't disturb others around them.
 

 


Edited by velochic - 8/25/11 at 3:53am
post #82 of 200
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGirls View Post




Perhaps not, but this thread has everything to do with your wealth.  And that's pretty poor manners.

 



Except that I don't have wealth. eyesroll.gif  We do fine, but I have never in my life been labeled "wealthy".  This thread is about kids and restaurants and what they are being taught (or not taught).

post #83 of 200
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by insidevoice View Post

I was brought up to be able to comfortably attend very formal events.  I was coached in how to both attend and serve at something along the lines of a State dinner.  It  wasn't ever something that was made into a big deal, it simply was the expectation. When you are raised internationally and within certain circles, it's unavoidable, I suppose. I suppose, however, the greatest focus of my early exposure to those situations was that it is always of paramount importance to make the people you are with feel comfortable and at ease.  It was emphasized that if I noted a mistake someone made, I should never make mention of it, and simply pretend it hadn't happened.  

 

In my current life?  Hand me the finger food and a nice picnic with friends outside where kids can play over a formal dinner any day.  I like low-key, and more than that, I like being able to focus more on the interactions of the people I share a meal with than whether or not they know to use the correct fork. 

 

As for my children, well the little ones wouldn't be taken to anything more than a casual family restaurant.  At two and three, they are simply NOT  there yet. My oldest, while having exceptional manners, is soon to be exposed to new settings where she can practice those skills.  I purposefully waited long enough that she won't be so concrete and outspoken if she did notice someone not following "the rules".  I want her to be comfortable in a variety of settings, but mostly, I want her to learn to be an open and accepting person who will be able to help other people be at ease. 

 

 


This was the kind of info I was after.  Thanks InsideVoice.  And I totally agree with all you've stated.

 

post #84 of 200

You can have wealth without being labeled as wealthy, FWIW.


In a thread in response to an incident in what sounds like a normal chain restaurant, you spend most of your posts discussing extremely fancy restaurants where you regularly spend over a hundred dollars on a meal, talk about even more extremely pricey places like The French Laundry, and imply that the only reason you don't go there and drop a couple grand on a meal is because they are not local to you.  You've repeatedly discussed how much meals cost, how much you spend on going out to eat, and have made snide comments about restaurants that are reasonably priced.  None of which is relevant in the slightest to an 8yo being really rude in a chain restaurant.  I especially loved how you made sure to clarify that you would not normally eat in such an ordinary establishment, it was only because of special circumstances.

 

Regardless of how much wealth you have, all of that is pretty gauche according to my very middle-class manners.

 

My working-class parents never taught me the minutae of forks and bread-eating and whatnot.  I have ended up eating at fancy places in a couple of odd circumstances, and it's not that hard, because people in those places usually have enough class to judge people by something other than the direction in which they spoon their soup.  My unclassy manners of be nice, listen to what others have to say, be polite to the waitress, take care to not insult anyone, chew with your mouth closed etc seem to have worked out fine.  At least a couple of those fancy events were job interviews and I did get the job.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by velochic View Post





Except that I don't have wealth. eyesroll.gif  We do fine, but I have never in my life been labeled "wealthy".  This thread is about kids and restaurants and what they are being taught (or not taught).



 

post #85 of 200

I havent read the entire thread because all this blather is making my IBS act up, but I have a point of view.

 

I have seen children being raised by people who live in big cities surrounded culture, money, and refinement act like complete monsters in public.  I have also seen children being raied in "humble roots" as you called them, act with complete respect, refinement, and ettiquete. 

 

I have seen the former eat nothing but chicken nuggets and peanut butter and jelly, and the latter fully enjoy homemade tripe and escargot. 

 

So really, what was the point of this?  Money, social class, geographic location, NONE of this has anything to do with how people decide to raise their children.  Atleast not IMO. 

post #86 of 200

Anyone else totally flashing back to Jack dressed up in a tuxedo on the Titanic, and NO ONEknew he was a street rat until he told them so?  I LOVED the message in that movie.  LOVED IT!

post #87 of 200
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGirls View Post

You can have wealth without being labeled as wealthy, FWIW.


In a thread in response to an incident in what sounds like a normal chain restaurant, you spend most of your posts discussing extremely fancy restaurants where you regularly spend over a hundred dollars on a meal, talk about even more extremely pricey places like The French Laundry, and imply that the only reason you don't go there and drop a couple grand on a meal is because they are not local to you.  You've repeatedly discussed how much meals cost, how much you spend on going out to eat, and have made snide comments about restaurants that are reasonably priced.  None of which is relevant in the slightest to an 8yo being really rude in a chain restaurant.  I especially loved how you made sure to clarify that you would not normally eat in such an ordinary establishment, it was only because of special circumstances.

 

Regardless of how much wealth you have, all of that is pretty gauche according to my very middle-class manners.

 

My working-class parents never taught me the minutae of forks and bread-eating and whatnot.  I have ended up eating at fancy places in a couple of odd circumstances, and it's not that hard, because people in those places usually have enough class to judge people by something other than the direction in which they spoon their soup.  My unclassy manners of be nice, listen to what others have to say, be polite to the waitress, take care to not insult anyone, chew with your mouth closed etc seem to have worked out fine.  At least a couple of those fancy events were job interviews and I did get the job.

 



 


I agree that one can have wealth without being wealthy.  There are many people whose net worth is greater than their lifestyle would indicate.

 

In one post I mentioned different types of restaurants and where we dine as a point of reference. Not "repeatedly".  You are exaggerating.  But it doesn't really matter one way or another.  Most people determine how "fancy" a restaurant is based on what you're paying.  Most people think that there are different rules that apply to these different places, especially where kids are concerned.  I certainly didn't imply that we'd be eating at TFL every day if we lived in a place that had such restaurants, I simply said that we don't go to such places because we don't have them and we'd only been to fine dining on the East coast (where, um... we don't live).  You are making the implication.  Not me.  I did not "repeatedly" talk about prices.  They were mentioned as examples in one post.  And no, we don't eat in places like Applebee's because their food is processed and we don't eat processed food.  We choose to use our dining dollars to eat places where we like the food, and that happens to be non-family, non-chain, non-processed, non-"freeze-and-fry" places.  If people didn't enjoy these types of places, then they wouldn't exist.  Who cares whom eats there or not.  You seem to take offense that people make different choices than you.  You put yourself down as "unclassy" and "working-class", but I happen to think that working-class doesn't mean that a person has to be ignorant of social norms in different situations. That's your problem, not mine.  I don't really care if you think me "gauche".  Like assholes, everyone has their opinion and you have a right to yours. 

 

post #88 of 200


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGirls View Post

You can have wealth without being labeled as wealthy, FWIW.


In a thread in response to an incident in what sounds like a normal chain restaurant, you spend most of your posts discussing extremely fancy restaurants where you regularly spend over a hundred dollars on a meal, talk about even more extremely pricey places like The French Laundry, and imply that the only reason you don't go there and drop a couple grand on a meal is because they are not local to you.  You've repeatedly discussed how much meals cost, how much you spend on going out to eat, and have made snide comments about restaurants that are reasonably priced.  None of which is relevant in the slightest to an 8yo being really rude in a chain restaurant.  I especially loved how you made sure to clarify that you would not normally eat in such an ordinary establishment, it was only because of special circumstances.

 

Regardless of how much wealth you have, all of that is pretty gauche according to my very middle-class manners.

 

My working-class parents never taught me the minutae of forks and bread-eating and whatnot.  I have ended up eating at fancy places in a couple of odd circumstances, and it's not that hard, because people in those places usually have enough class to judge people by something other than the direction in which they spoon their soup.  My unclassy manners of be nice, listen to what others have to say, be polite to the waitress, take care to not insult anyone, chew with your mouth closed etc seem to have worked out fine.  At least a couple of those fancy events were job interviews and I did get the job.

 



 



 



Quote:
Originally Posted by velochic View Post





Except that I don't have wealth. eyesroll.gif  We do fine, but I have never in my life been labeled "wealthy".  This thread is about kids and restaurants and what they are being taught (or not taught).


 

Ok, so this is where I'm confused then.  Because, frankly, from your posts I thought you were in a very high income bracket.  Not middle class or even upper middle class.

 

You spoke in a derogatory manner about restaurants in the $100-150 price range and really seemed to believe that only once you hit that magic $250 a plate price did you step into the world of fine dining.  And you take your child there.

 

I know for us we are probably in an upper bracket yet those meals are events for us and I'm certainly not paying those prices for my son to eat when he's just as happy with a $5 cheeseburger or staying at home and cooking together.


We have eaten at the type of restaurants you are speaking - yes, even The French Laundry a couple of times - but those were rare, planned events.  We go about once a year.  In a good year maybe 3 times.  Once in a while we really splurge - but those splurges have been exactly twice for big celebrations.

 

If you are truly not wealthy (in the common definition of the term) then I'm not sure how or why you are routinely spending that much at a restaurant.  Because, really, the $250 per plate charge is just the beginning.  You never get out for under about $700 but it is usually a four figure check.  For two people.  I can't imagine doing that on a regular basis.

 

And if your child is already eating at those types of places - well what is there to look forward to?  I still remember the first time I went to that type of restaurant.  It was exciting and fun and just a teeny bit intimidating but overall just really truly cool to be there.  If I had been doing it since being a kid?  Eh, I think the trill might have been gone by now.  We're going to Next in two weeks and I am so excited and so looking forward to it and I can't figure out what to wear.  I can't help but think some experiences should not be repeated so often as to become common.

 

post #89 of 200

velochic, for what it's worth, i read the whole thread before and after posting and i never got any kind of impression of bragging. 

there was one poster who seemed to be talking about some super fancy restaurants i never even heard of, but, whatever. 

i never had that perception from your posts, and i frankly don't know what the other folks are talking about.  weren't you describing the behavior of a kid somewhere like a sonny's?  wha?  and then described "upscale" restaurants like RL or outback?  so, no.  i did get some "we go to fancy restaurants" kind of feeling from some other folks' posts, but some people spend money on stuff like that, which isn't an option for our family even if that was monetarily feasable. 

don't let them make you feel bad for asking a question.  jeez.

and... attacking people on mdc for being wealthy?  please.  nobody saw the TAO thread where lots of people on here say they're in the 100,000 bracket? 

i personally don't-give-a-crap if you're wealthy or no, but if someone fails to understand the privilege that carries, that is a whole other story.  that i did get from a comment or two about the server's job to be cleaning up after messy toddlers and whatnot (not from the OP).  THAT is not cool.  being wealthy isn't a big deal, it's how you impress that upon the world.

post #90 of 200
I am wealthy and only very rarely spend that much on a dinner out.

Also, I've eaten with people worth literally billions of dollars and from "old money", and those who are American eat American style, not continental style. I disagree that eating American style is bad etiquette. It's a cultural difference based on where you live.

But eating soup by moving the spoon away from you, napkins, etc., is all pretty standard etiquette. I think eating soup by moving the spoon away from you makes you drip less. I don't think people are likely to splash themselves with soup no matter how they use their spoon, but they'll drip a lot more scooping it toward them.
post #91 of 200
Thread Starter 

You need to re-read my posts.  This is simply not true.

 

THIS is what I said:

 

"We (including dd, 9yo) have enjoyed, as a family, what I would call "nice" dining since dd was about 5yo, and we eat out about once a week.  This may or may not involve white tablecloth, but isn't what I'd call "fine" dining (the bill may be $100 - $150, but rarely more).  We really don't have fine dining of the caliber of The French Laundry or Gramercy Tavern where we live, so[spending] any more [on a meal] would be rare.  Still, it's occasionally upscale enough that dd needs to use nuances"

 

ETA:  I do think that TFL is fine dining... and last I knew, the tasting menu was $250 or so.  My niece eats a ton of fast food with her kids and spends about the same we do on eating out.  Nobody is saying she's wealthy because she can afford fast food 4 or 5 times a week.  I can't imagine anyone saying that spending $400 - $500/month on eating out would put you in the "wealthy" bracket.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChristyMarie View Post

Ok, so this is where I'm confused then.  Because, frankly, from your posts I thought you were in a very high income bracket.  Not middle class or even upper middle class.

 

You spoke in a derogatory manner about restaurants in the $100-150 price range and really seemed to believe that only once you hit that magic $250 a plate price did you step into the world of fine dining.  And you take your child there.


Edited by velochic - 8/25/11 at 6:00am
post #92 of 200
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post

I am wealthy and only very rarely spend that much on a dinner out.

Also, I've eaten with people worth literally billions of dollars and from "old money", and those who are American eat American style, not continental style. I disagree that eating American style is bad etiquette. It's a cultural difference based on where you live.

But eating soup by moving the spoon away from you, napkins, etc., is all pretty standard etiquette. I think eating soup by moving the spoon away from you makes you drip less. I don't think people are likely to splash themselves with soup no matter how they use their spoon, but they'll drip a lot more scooping it toward them.


Bingo! Or learning a way that works for multiple cultures.  Same goes for chopsticks, eating with your hands properly (especially in Muslim countries), etc.

 

post #93 of 200
Quote:
Originally Posted by hildare View Post

velochic, for what it's worth, i read the whole thread before and after posting and i never got any kind of impression of bragging. 

 

don't let them make you feel bad for asking a question.  jeez.

and... attacking people on mdc for being wealthy?  please.  nobody saw the TAO thread where lots of people on here say they're in the 100,000 bracket? 

 


This.

 

As far as I can tell everyone agrees kids should have manners in a restaurant (and in life!)

 

As far as I can tell Velochic wants to talk about restaurant etiquette - which is not my cup of tea, but absolutley fine.  

 

Etiquette may be useful for some kids in some situations or it may just be fun interest for the parents and child.  Knowing to spoon soup away from you does not make you a snob - glaring or tsking at someone who does not know that - does.  I have not seen evidence of that on this thread.  

 

I call a little reverse elitism on some of the above posts.  Calling someone out for saying she goes to expensive restaurants and wants to discuss etiquette?  Really?

 

 

post #94 of 200
Quote:
Originally Posted by velochic View Post




I agree.   As I said, in casual places, there are just as many adult cell phone users and loud talkers that disrupt.   These people, though, are often raising kids, so what example are they giving?



I've seen a lot of cell phone comments in this thread and I just want to address this issue. You assume that everyone who is at a restaurant is there for their family meal. I go out to eat with my husband about 3 times a month for the specific purpose of having a business meeting. We are usually in the city, about 60 miles away from home, because he just takes a few hours away from work to meet me. My 16 month old is always present. We seldomly talk on the phone at restaurants, but we spend plenty of time using the phone for a calculator, texting clients back, ect. We also pull out the laptop *gasp* when I need to use quickbooks. We often choose restaurants with free wifi specifically for this purpose. And, if you looked at us, you'd see a dirty landscaper and a mom with a baby. Basically, you would assume that we are texting and "not even talking to each other". You probably think we are horrible examples of parents. You know, working for ourselves, restructuring our lives to be able to spend more time with DD, building a business that may one day be hers.


You have no idea why people are on their cell phones and why they are at the restaurant in the first place. I hate to think that people like you are judging me when Im trying to do my job with my family present.


By the way, etiquette regarding things like silverware, how to eat your soup, ect is a sign of wealth. I cant afford salad forks and soup spoons, nor can I really afford to dine in the places that set their tables with them.


Also, after working in local, casual restaurants for several years, I can agree with Hildare that the worst sin you can make is not cleaning up after your child.
post #95 of 200

My kids are taught ettiquette and manners. Good manners requires consideration for others, which applies as much to complaining adult patrons as to younger children in unchild friendly places. 

post #96 of 200
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adaline'sMama View Post



Also, after working in local, casual restaurants for several years, I can agree with Hildare that the worst sin you can make is not cleaning up after your child.


I don't doubt this is true - for the server.

 

As a fellow diner I could care less about another tables mess unless it is really extreme.

 

I don't think we should make extra mess for a server but babies and toddlers are messy.  

 

 


Edited by purslaine - 8/25/11 at 8:57am
post #97 of 200
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adaline'sMama View Post

I've seen a lot of cell phone comments in this thread and I just want to address this issue. 

i think this is more about 'disruptive' cell phone usage. not just any cell phone usage. 

 

woah woah woah - this thread has really gone places hasnt it?

 

a $100 meal for a family of 4 i dont call wealthy.

 

i will also say even in the American culture - there is a big difference in the etiquette culture between the east coast and west coast that i have noticed. 

 

also i think manners is not related to wealth, but definitely etiquette is. for a family whose high dining experience is fast food - you can immediately spot in a communal dining experience. generational poverty usually means lack of etiquette in my experience.

 

 

post #98 of 200
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adaline'sMama View Post

You have no idea why people are on their cell phones and why they are at the restaurant in the first place. I hate to think that people like you are judging me when Im trying to do my job with my family present.


By the way, etiquette regarding things like silverware, how to eat your soup, ect is a sign of wealth. I cant afford salad forks and soup spoons, nor can I really afford to dine in the places that set their tables with them.


Also, after working in local, casual restaurants for several years, I can agree with Hildare that the worst sin you can make is not cleaning up after your child.

 

Unfortunately, unless you put up a sign, I would guess that people, in general, don't know why you're on your cell phone at the dinner table and would be more inclined to think that you can't get off of your smart phones rather than jumping to the conclusion that you are having your monthly business meeting with child in tow.  People do judge... just like they do when they see a kid strapped into a car seat in a running car while the parent is inside.  Nobody knows the whole story.  I know that *I* would not make the odd assumption that you're having a business meeting with your husband.  Most people who dine out as a family are usually trying to get away from that.  It's just not a natural conclusion to come to, IYKWIM.  Nobody is going to think, "A couple, with a young toddler going out to eat.  They must be having a business meeting."

 

And I still concur that etiquette is not a sign of wealth, necessarily.  This thread makes me wonder if it's a sign of the times, so to speak.  That is, my parents may have been rural farming and civil servant folk, but they knew quite well how to entertain and the proper rules to teach their kids - it had nothing to do with income.  Like I said, though, my parents are probably older than many MDC momma's grandparents and I KNOW I am one of the older moms here.  Perhaps it's generational.

 

As for cleaning up after a child... table, yes.  Crawling on the floor?  Are you kidding me?  They have sweepers and you can tip appropriately.

post #99 of 200
Quote:
Originally Posted by velochic View Post

And I still concur that etiquette is not a sign of wealth, necessarily.  

agreed. this thread reminds me of the movie - My Fair Lady. 

post #100 of 200
Quote:
Originally Posted by velochic View Post





Except that I don't have wealth. eyesroll.gif  We do fine, but I have never in my life been labeled "wealthy".  This thread is about kids and restaurants and what they are being taught (or not taught).




To be honest, I don't know what your intention was with this thread. But because of the way you've gone about it, I don't at ALL get that your main point is about the importance of kids knowing basic manners. The info I've walked away from this thread with is: You spend a lot of money on fancy dinners; you have extremely high expectations of childrens' table etiquette (some of which you even admit is too "esoteric" to be practical, but yet you've spent so much time and detail talking about it...why?) I've also learned that The French Laundry is a SUPER fancy restaurant; that the Outback and Red Lobster are just wannabe nice restaurants, and that velochic and family DO. NOT. EAT at places like Denny's.

 

 

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