A Snubbing?

And this came across my emails this week! I wonder how many people have dealt with this type of siutation?

Dear Lady Hooper-Brackett,

I think we’ve been snubbed. We have not heard from a certain couple for about 8 months. Our last contact was us extending an invitation to dinner to which they attended. But we have not heard a peep! Should we reach out to them? 

Appalled and Confused. 

Dear Appalled and Confused, 

By all means yes, make one last attempt. You don’t know if there has been an illness or other occurrence that kept them from communicating. 

If nothing has occurred but you sense coolness from them, so be it. 

But the petering out of your friendship will not have been caused by you. 

Keeping Peace In The Family

I’d like to thank you for all the messages of gladness that I’ve returned! My email is overflowing with questions and this is the one that was at the top of the list this morning. It is not the typical question that I receive, but this might be helpful for other people going through the same thing. 

Dear Lady Hooper-Brackett,

This Christmas was very rough for me and I need some clarity. I am the only one of my family that is of a different spiritual path.As I am the only one of us that lived close to my dad, my father gave me power of attorney in all of his legal matters, including the person he chose to make his arrangements after he passed. He had been ill for a time and wanted no stress for the family. He did not tell me what he wanted as far as a funeral or celebration of life. I chose to have a simple cemetery ceremony when he passed earlier this year with no church service. This has caused a lot of resentment from my siblings, especially my sister. She confronted me at Christmas and let me know just what she thought about what she calls my evil decision.  I now have guilt wondering if I did the right thing? My Dad was not religious nor was he a churchgoer and I have not held to the tenets of the religion I was born to for many years. How do I deal with this as I want harmony again in our family?-B.W.

Dear B.W.,

First, my condolences on the loss of your dad. 

Second, I believe that you did the best you could. With no instruction and knowing what you did of his religious feelings, a simple ceremony seems to be appropriate. I also feel that your siblings could have done a separate ceremony should they wish. If no one offered, move forward knowing that you did nothing wrong.

Last, I will say that your goal of harmony is a good one.  I suggest that on the first anniversary of your dad’s passing you have a church service or Mass said in his honor? This might help to alleviate this tension. I wish you and your family the best and peace always..

A Very Happy New Year!

Hello, dear readers, 

I’m not going to go into a long explanation as to my absence. I was gone. You noticed. I apologize. 

Now that that is out of the way, let’s move forward in 2023! 

Welcome back to our look at manners and the sundry ways people are annoying! Here is our first question for the New Year.

Dear Lady Hooper Brackett,

Once again my coworkers roped me into the office gifting pool, despite my repeated requests not to! I know, I could have better boundaries, but they made me feel bad. I am a thoughtful gift giver, but the absolute garbage they gave me pisses me off. Most of it is ending up in a donation pile to Goodwill. Am I wrong to feel slighted? Should I say something?

-Expert Gift Giver

Dear Expert Gift Giver,

While you have my sympathies, this is, as they say, how the cookie crumbles. Some people are not good at gift giving. Some people are on a budget and that ‘garbage’ might be the only thing they can afford. It is never in good taste to complain about gifts. 

As an aside, I detest forced gift giving and forced office parties. While it may add somewhat to the joy of the season (or as the case usually is…just gives people time away from their desks during a workday) I find this type of thing tiresome. Genuine friends should exchange gifts, but no one should be forced to participate. 

My only advice is to be gracious, don’t complain, donate the items, and refuse to take part next year and use budget concerns as your excuse. Be strong. 

Best New Year Wishes,

The Lady Hooper-Brackett

The Etiquette of Leftovers

With an increased interest in economy and saving money, more people are using all of their leftovers. But this question involves serving them at a social gathering.

Dear Lady Hooper-Brackett, 

For the past six years on the day after Thanksgiving, my sister-in-law has a party at her home. She feels that since we are all not together on the holiday proper, it can be a ‘second-edition’ Thanksgiving for us. She extends invitations to about a dozen of us in the family. My question is this: Is it really  acceptable for her to heat up her Thanksgiving leftovers and serve these items to us as she has been doing? Don’t get me wrong, her cooking is wonderful, but I can’t help but feel that it is a little rude to be served leftover food.  Who is correct here?

I Don’t Like Leftovers

Dear I Don’t Like Leftovers,

I admit that I have never been asked this question before, so some time was needed to come up with a thoughtful answer.

  1. I believe that since she is very upfront about this being a ‘second-edition’ Thanksgiving and is inviting family only, this is perfectly fine. I wonder just what else you would be eating on the day after Thanksgiving if you weren’t eating turkey and all the fixings?
  2. Your sister-in-law is being gracious by providing a venue for you all to be together after not spending the holiday proper together. Her invitation is sent from affection.
  3. What’s wrong with eating food that is wonderfully cooked?
  4. I’m pleased to see that she will not be discarding perfectly good food, but sharing it with you all.

The one caveat to this that I will add: It never seems proper to serve leftovers in any other circumstance than this one: Invite family or extremely close friends only and be upfront.

Try to be gracious yourself, even if you do not like leftovers.

Best Leftover Wishes,

The Lady Hooper-Brackett

Etiquette on Wheels

There are days that I long for the easier days of horse and buggy travel. At least everyone seemed to be going at the same pace. Today when The Hooper-Bracketts venture out, it is an adventure, to say the least. Let us examine good and proper etiquette when driving our mechanical chariots.

Speeding is unmannerly. Speed limits exist for a reason and if you are one of those that enjoys running up to the bumper of the car in front of you and then swerving around, I turn up my nose at your buffoonery.

Driving too slowly is unmannerly, most especially if one is driving slowly in the fast lane…also known as LollyGagging. Move to the slow lane.

Distracted driving….a la texting or using your handheld phone. Stop it, now! There is NOTHING that is more important than arriving safely…no call, text, Facebook post.

Merging bufoonry. I include both drivers who will not allow others to merge and those that see the merge signs five miles back and merge at the last minute in the same boat of rudeness. Be courteous!

The habit of not using the turn signal (blinker where The Hooper-Bracketts are from) is dangerous and rude.

Blowing one’s horn for no reason other than to hear it blare is the height of rudeness. One should only trumpet to avert danger, not to vent frustration.

Driving with the high beams on (horrors!) will earn you a stern look from me if I see you out and about.

Remember: drive courteously!

Best Driving Wishes,

The Lady Hooper-Brackett