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Thread: Etiquette tips

  1. #1
    Senior Member DA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    beaumont tx usa

    Etiquette tips

    how do a quad hold utensil properly?
    how do a vent quad be fed properly?

    Table manners

    o You'll get in more trouble for doing something "gross" than minor mistakes

    o Eat quietly

    § Sound effects are undesirable

    · Don't slurp or belch

    · This is not an organ recital -- try to avoid bodily noises

    § It's polite to say something nice about the food

    o Once you put food in your mouth, people don't want to see it again

    § Chew with your mouth closed (no noise)

    · Take small enough bites so that this is possible

    § Don't talk with food in your mouth

    · If someone asks you a question, it's OK to wait until you've swallowed your food to respond

    o If you're not sure what to do, watch the people around you

    o Say "excuse me" if you need to leave the table (like to go to the bathroom)

    o Don't grab food

    o Don't put stuff (like purse, keys, papers) on the table

    o Keep all the legs of your chair on the ground

    o Sit reasonably still (not squirming or fidgeting)

    o If you can't eat some of the food that's served, it depends on the setting

    § At a restaurant, it's OK to just not eat it without saying anything.

    § If a friend has cooked something, it might be good to politely explain why you aren't eating it (medical, etc).

    § Sharing saliva is considered unsanitary.

    · With dip/sauce, put a little on your plate, if possible.

    · It's very bad to bite into something and then dip it into a shared food source.

    o It's considered impolite to use a toothpick at the table. Trying to extract something with your fingers is worse.

    o Blowing your nose at the table is undesirable.

    o In casual settings, people are sometimes pickier about what they'll talk about at the table than in other situations.

    o Formal setting

    § Getting seated

    · Plate is in center

    · Knives and spoons on right

    · Fork(s) left

    · Drinks right (DRink = "Drink Right")

    · Solids (like bread plate) left

    · Expect food to be served from the right and cleared from the left

    · The waiter may pull your chair out for you if you are female

    · Napkin in lap, never on shirt

    · If you're male, don't put your tie over your shoulder

    § Bread

    · Take only one slice at a time

    · It's OK to use hands if you do it neatly

    · To butter bread, take a small amount from the dish and put it on your plate.

    · Butter one piece at a time?

    § Utensils

    · A good rule is "work your way in from the outside."

    · Be logical -- you wouldn't eat soup with a knife

    · If you aren't sure, look at the people around you

    · Americans often switch fork between hands, but not required

    o When cutting, knife - RH, fork LH

    o When eating, fork - RH

    · Don't let a utensil you've used touch the table

    · Don't put the entire soup spoon into your mouth

    · When you're resting, put utensils on the plate in an "X" pattern

    o Fork bottom on left

    o Knife bottom on right

    o Napkin still in lap

    · When you're done, put utensils on the plate in "eleven o'clock position"

    o Utensils parallel

    o Bottom right - top left

    o Points facing away from you

    o Wait until everyone is finished to put napkin next to your plate

    § Loosely, not twisted, crumpled, or refolded

    § Not on chair

    § General

    · Sit up straight

    · Passing food

    o If someone asks for something to be passed, only reach for it if you are the closest to it

    o Pass to your neighbor

    o (Avoid reaching across someone because of the personal space thing).

    o If you decide you want some too, you have to pass it first and then ask that it be passed back to you

    o Never throw anything

    o If someone asks for salt or pepper, pass both

    o Only add condiments to food on your own plate, not shared food

    o Don't add salt or pepper before tasting food

    · Spills

    o Try to do "damage control" (preventing stuff from spilling on other people)

    o If you spill something on someone else

    § DON'T touch them (personal space again) -- let them clean it up

    § Apologize

    § Offer to pay for dry cleaning

    · Fingers

    o Watch others' lead

    o If in doubt, be conservative and use a utensil

    · Try to eat at the same pace as people around you

    · Wait until everyone else has their food before you start eating

    · Avoid alcohol

    · Don't order the most expensive item or dessert unless your host encourages it

    · Don't ask for doggy bags in a formal setting

    · If you drop your silverware, pick it up if possible, and ask server for replacement. DON'T reuse it (gross)

    o Choice of food

    · Not difficult or messy

    · Easy to digest

    o Alcohol

    · Safety

    o Assault risk

    o DUI

    · Increased risk of social blunders

    o Less awareness of situation

    o You only think you're being more personable

    o Caffeine

    · Limit at interviews

    · May increase nervousness

    · Body Language

    o Eyes

    · Should make some eye contact

    o Between 1/3 and 2/3 of the time

    · Staring violates space

    · If you aren't talking with a person, it is best not to look at them.

    · Generally look at person when they are speaking to you

    · The face is the most polite place to look

    o If you have trouble hearing, watching the lips sometimes helps

    o Avoid looking at a man's groin or a woman's chest

    o Personal Space

    · Variable, not closer than arm's length with someone you don't know well

    · Generally, people stand somewhat closer for long conversations so they can talk quietly

    · Too close

    o Other person backs away, seems uncomfortable

    · Too far

    o Trouble hearing each other, need to raise voice

    · Be careful about coming up behind people

    o This can make them nervous if they didn't realize you were there

    o If you're running, "On your right/left" can be good

    · Touch

    o Risky with people you don't know

    o If you have to get someone's attention, tapping the shoulder is the safest place.

    o The shoulder, outer arm (away from the body), upper back are relatively safe

    o Shaking hands

    · Firm but not tight grip. Considered normal greeting in U.S. If you aren't familiar with it, practice with someone who is.

    · Consideration

    § Don't block passages, doorways, roads, etc.

    § "Excuse me" is a way of acknowledging someone else's space

    § Don't leave lipstick smears on anything

    § Not everyone will like your perfume or cologne. Don't apply it with a garden hose.

    § To get rid of gum, wrap in wrapper and throw it in trash.

    § Don't assault people's senses.

    · If you're in a shared room, check with others before changing the thermostat

    · Keep your voice down if people around you need to concentrate

    · Play music quietly, especially at night and early in the morning.

    · Many people don't like to breathe cigarette smoke.

    o Never smoke in a "No Smoking" area.

    o Ask permission before lighting up at someone's house.

    · Musical instruments can be very hard to ignore - be considerate.

    § Be aware of people around you; don't step right in front of someone.

    § Keep to the right when you're walking or using the road

    § Let other people get off a bus or elevator before you get on

    · Gestures

    § Avoid

    · Offensive

    o Extended middle finger (means "fuck you")

    o Forearm jerk (= "up yours?")

    o Tongue extended from mouth

    o Anything related to sex or race

    · Not impressive

    o Nervous or "weird"

    § Hands in mouth

    § Nailbiting

    § Fidgeting

    § Wringing hands

    § Pulling at hair, eyelashes, or eyebrows

    § Rocking

    § "Thousand-yard stare"

    o Gross

    § Nose picking

    § Scratching underarms

    § Hands touching groin area

    § Picking teeth

    § Excessive head scratching (may suggest lice)

    § Messing with scabs, blemishes, scars

    · Conflict Resolution

    o Use "I" language.

    o Dealing with rude people

    · Don't take the bait

    · Their problem, not yours

    · Rude remarks

    o Just stare at them

    o Say, "Could you please repeat that?"

    o Avoid fighting words and categorical comments

    o Allow people to "save face."

    · Conversation

    o Starting

    o Showing interest

    · Don't interrupt

    · Match others

    o Choice of Topics

    · Good

    o Current events

    o Neutral topics

    · Risky

    o Varies with group, sometimes hard to gage.

    § Be careful with this if you have social problems

    § Playing it safe is better

    § Don't be the first person to "cross a line"

    o Offensive

    § Racial slurs

    § Categorical comments

    § Derogatory remarks, especially if you're not sure who's listening or whether they'll be repeated

    o Overly personal

    § Sex life

    § Medical issues

    § Some bodily functions

    · Associated with bathroom

    · Specific to one gender

    § Family/relationship problems

    § Consider whether what you say might be repeated

    o Disturbing

    § People think, "I don't want to hear this."

    § Graphic

    § Violence/abuse <![endif]>

    § Unhealthy behavior

    § Depressing

    o Strong feelings

    § Religion

    · More sensitive with very religious people

    § Abortion

    · No easy answers

    § Capital punishment

    o Awkward

    § Money

    o Appropriate Questions

    · Intrusive is bad

    o Weight/size

    o Sexual behavior

    o Marriage/family

    o "Interrogation"/lots of questions

    o Inappropriate interest in person

    § Makes person wonder why you'd want to know that

    o Money

    § Even if salary is a matter of public record, don't discuss

    § Often bad to ask how much something cost

    · Loaded is also bad

    o Only one "right" answer

    o Manipulative and irritating

    · Good idea to take lead from other person

    o Ask questions about what they're talking about

    o Questions should reflect actually listening

    · Generally OK

    o "How's it going?"

    o "What happened at the game last night?"

    o Be careful not to repeat "safe" questions too often - this will also sound strange

    o Include everyone

    · Use a language that everyone can understand

    o If you don't, others may assume you can't speak their language

    o Avoid jargon or slang that may be unfamiliar to some

    · Topic should be generally interesting

    o Don't bore or exclude people

    o Explain things so that people with different backgrounds can understand.

    o Limit talking about yourself

    o Humor

    · Ethnic

    o People sometimes make jokes about their own ethnic group

    o Joking about someone else's ethnic group may make them mad

    · Off-color jokes

    · Do people know you're joking?

    · Religion is sometimes sensitive, if people are very observant

    o Volume of voice

    · Too quiet = hard to hear

    o You're asked to repeat yourself a lot

    · Too loud is annoying, especially when people are trying to concentrate

    o People turn around and look at you

    o Language

    · Obscenities or poor grammar makes negative statement about you

    · Avoid racial slurs and stereotypes

    · "You people" is generally not good

    · Honesty

    o Lying takes effort

    o People with social difficulties already have to work hard to behave appropriately

    · Appearance

    o Hygiene

    · Clean clothes

    · Bathing

    · Teeth

    · Deodorant

    · Shave

    o Dress

    · Appropriate for situation

    · Observe others / seek advice

    · Avoid

    o Poor repair

    § Torn

    § Stained

    § Holes

    § Excessively worn

    o Revealing

    § Sheer

    § Tight

    § Low neck

    § High hemline

    o Making "statement" with clothes

    § Might not be the one you intend

    o Ill-fitting

    · Colors

    o Neutrals are safest and easiest to match

    o Find colors that look good on you

    · Shoes

    o Comfortable

    o If you're prone to falling, probably not high heels

    o Good condition

    § Polished, if necessary

    § Not worn around heels

    · Knowing What's Going On

    o Watch others

    · Listen first

    · Be aware of "red flags"

    o The person will probably talk about you the same way they talk about others

    o Doesn't accept responsibility for own behavior

    § "It's her fault that I did this, since she made me angry."

    § "If people let me get away with it, then it's their problem."

    o Many more...

    · Choose role models carefully

    · TV/Media may be misleading

    o What's funny on TV might be unacceptable in real life

    § Would it really be a good idea to say "Eat my shorts" to a professor?

    o Talk shows rarely features "normal" Americans

    § They succeed because they make viewers feel superior. ("At least I'm not as messed up as these people.")

    § Being willing to discuss extremely personal things on national TV is not typical.

    o Violence is not a quick way to solve problems

    § U.S. has less gun control than some other countries, but there are still rules. Law enforcement people get very unfriendly if you break them.

    § In real life, when people slug it out like they do in the movies, they often get arrested.

    o Despite what you see in magazines like Cosmopolitan, most people don't approve of adultery.

    o Pay attention to reactions

    o Seek feedback from people you trust

    · Getting around

    o Showing up on time

    § Job Interviews

    · Try to walk in about 5 minutes early

    § Social

    · With parties, varies by region

    o In the Midwest, it means, "Don't show up before this time."

    · When meeting someone, try to make it on time so they don't have to wait.

    o Realistic planning

    § Allow plenty of time

    § Look at maps in advance

    § Know who to call if there's a problem

    o When to leave

    § Watch for cues

    · Person stands up

    · Says less, tone of voice changes

    · Says something about having things to do

    · Asks if there's anything else

    § Watch others

    · Leave party when other people do

    · Being the last person to leave may be bad

    · Leave when the party is scheduled to end, even if other people are still there

    · Communications

    · Phone

    o 11 AM - 9 PM is usually the safest time

    o Calling people at home can be intrusive

    § With professors, coworkers, etc. going to office hours or e-mail are better

    § Limit length of conversation

    · Email

    o Be considerate about length, volume, and content of e-mail

    o Confrontation is better in person than by e-mail

    § Potential for misunderstanding

    § A nasty e-mail seems cowardly

    o Don't forward or post without author's permission

    o Be aware that what you write can be forwarded (hostile/offensive)

    · Websites

    o Nothing offensive

    § What impression might it make on a prospective employer?

    o Consider your audience and their interests

    · Visiting

    o Generally, don't go to someone's house unless they invite you.

    o For a personal visit, try to show up on time but not early.

    o Call if you will be delayed or can't make it so they don't worry.

    · People With Disabilities

    · Never park in a handicapped space unless you really are disabled and have the tags for your car.

    · Talk to the person with the disability, not just others with them

    · Don't patronize the person

    · Make sure that questions about the disability are polite and respectful. Don't ask inappropriate personal questions.

    · Look at them like you'd look at anyone else

    § Not staring

    § Don't avoid looking at them

    · If you have a child, let them talk to the person

    · If it looks like they might need help, offer. If they decline, respect that.

    · If they can't shake hands, nodding or smiling is fine,

    · Be genuine.

    · People first, disabled second

    · If you don't know what to do, ask.

    · People with disabilities are interested in the same topics of conversation as non-disabled people

    · Respect space

    o Don't pat them on the head.

    · Move something (like furniture) if it is blocking them

    · Get on eye level with person

    · Speak in normal voice. Don't raise voice unless they ask you to.

    · Shaking hands with the left hand is OK.

    · Use first name only if you're addressing everyone else that way.

    · Offer to hold or carry packages

    · Don't use "normal" to describe people who don't have disabilities.

    o It is better to say "people without disabilities" or "typical," if necessary to make comparisons.

    · People in wheelchairs

    o Terms to avoid

    § Cripple, victim, defect, invalid, sick, diseased, wheelchair bound, handicapped, able-bodied, victim, suffers from, a patient

    o Good terms

    § "Uses a wheelchair"

    · Don't touch their wheelchair without their permission. This is their space.

    · Visually impaired

    o Allow a person with a visual impairment to take your arm (around the elbow) so you will guide instead of propel them

    o When greeting someone with a visual impairment, identify yourself and people around you

    o With more than one person, give verbal cues to indicate who you are speaking to.

    o Also, indicate when you are moving from one place to another and when the conversation has ended

    o Don't pet or distract a guide dog. The dog is responsible for its owner's safety and is always working. It is not a pet.

    · Speech impairment

    o Listen attentively

    o Encourage, don't correct

    o Don't interrupt or try to speak for the person

    o Don't pretend to understand if you don't. Try repeating what you think the person said and asking if that's correct

    o If necessary, ask questions that can be answered with one word or a shake or nod of the head

    · Hearing-impaired

    o If the person has an interpreter, speak to and look at the person, not the interpreter

    o To get the attention of someone who is hearing-impaired, tap them on the shoulder or wave your hand.

    o Don't assume that everyone who is hearing-impaired can lip read.

    o If they can, place yourself in good light, and keep hands, cigarettes, etc. away from mouth.

    o Shouting won't help; written notes may.

    o Don't stand with bright light directly behind you

    · Mental/learning/other

    o Keep your communication simple. Rephrase comments or questions for better clarity.

    o Stay focused on the person as he or she responds to you.

    o Allow the person time to tell or show you what he or she wants.

    o Terms to avoid

    § the mentally retarded / mentally deficient

    § a retardate / a retard (never)

    § a feeble-minded person

    § Slow

    § the mentally ill

    § crazy, psycho, mental case (never)

    § the Down's person / Mongoloid (never)

  2. #2

    Too many rules....

    Where did this come from???? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.....

  3. #3
    Who is this supposed to be for?

  4. #4
    Senior Member nate007's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Winnipeg, manitoba, canada
    What was the point of that?

  5. #5
    Senior Member Jeff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Argao, Cebu, Philippines
    I think DA is lamenting the difficulties we quads have with table manners. Maybe he included the rest of the manners material as a point of reference...

    I've attended meals over a two week period where maners were taught and expected. It was difficult for me to comply. I'd rather eat at a table of hicks without manners. Well, maybe not that either.

    ~See you at the SCIWire-used-to-be-paralyzed Reunion ~

  6. #6
    Senior Member DA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    beaumont tx usa
    it is for me not to be shame when you back of the woods trailer
    park no shoes broke car on the lawn hill billies are on the post
    cure cruise.

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