We are now moving on to social spills and recoveries from Kate Spade's book Manners. I thought these were pretty funny and interesting.
It's one thing to get mail with your last name misspelled and quite another when an acquaintance continually does the same thing (and mispronounces your name as well). What can you do? How can you be gracious without embarrassing your friend?
~ Squirting your seatmate when you crack open a lobster. Offer your bib, if you have one, another napkin, and maybe even a piece of your lobster if it was from the claw.
~ Arriving a week early for a party
Humor is really the only way out of this one. Explain that you're on a campaign to improve your tardiness and that you seem to have gone slightly overboard in the direction.
~ Inquiring after someone's spouse and learning that they're no longer married
It's apparent that this is more of an acquaintance than a close friend, so offer a brief but sincere apology. Don't, however, take license and ask why the marriage ended.
~ Wearing the same dress as the hostess of an event
This is a case of the Frozen Smile Solution. Doubtless, neither of you is amused by the coincidence, but outwardly make light of it and let it pass.
~Spilling a Sea Breeze down the front of your white summer dress/ Someone else spilling a Sea Breeze down the front of your white summer dress.
Both spills were accidental, and thus it doesn't matter how the cocktail got on your dress. Excuse yourself, find some club soda, and do what you can in the short term to minimize the problem.
~ And the most predictable of bathroom boo-boos: a stubborn toilet
Who said life's fair?
And last but certainly not least....
The Name Game:
Social faux pas are often committed in the misspelling or mispronunciation of a name. Contrary to the belief that you should grin and bear it, it's actually a kindness to correct the person right then, rather than wait until a later time. Sometimes a delay adds to someone's embarrassment rather than mitigates it. When you do inform someone of your correct name, do so in a friendly and casual manner.
I hate doing that but you want to make sure that they know how to say your name. I have to correct people all the time. I hope you enjoyed this list just as much as I do. It was most helpful.
(text by Kate Spade, photos via Pinterest)