Originally created 05/05/02

Birthday parties should be a treat for everyone involved



Dear Carson: For my daughter's 16th birthday, I'd like for her to go out to eat at a casual restaurant with a few of her girlfriends. Would it be all right if I expected them to pay for their own meals, or should I pay for everyone? If it is all right for them to pay for their own meals, how do we tell them? - Dining Dilemma

Dear Reader: It is preferable to invite the number of girls you can afford to treat. Pre-order the meals so that you can keep your costs down.

Alternatively, you could ask them to a "Dutch treat" supper.

Dear Carson: I am an English teacher in South Korea and I am teaching my students how to introduce one person to another. I would like to know if they should introduce the younger person to the older or vice versa. I would also like to know the proper etiquette for introducing persons of position to subordinates. - Director of English School in South Korea

Dear Reader: Younger people should be presented to older people and subordinates to persons of position.

The way to do that is to first address the honored person, i.e., "Mrs. Giles, I would like to introduce your new student, Mary Smith," or "Mr. Sprout, I'd like to present your new assistant, Charles Adams."

Dear Carson: It seems I have developed allergies. When my nose starts to run, am I supposed to dab at each nostril? Is that the only proper thing to do? I am assuming it is improper to sort of put the hanky/tissue in each nostril. - Runny Nose

Dear Reader: Do not stuff your nostrils with tissue or a hankie. A delicate blow is preferable to that and also preferable to a rattling nose blow in a place where people are eating or trying to have a meeting.

You want to go to a pharmacist and ask her to recommend something for allergies that will not make you groggy, but will still stop the runny nose.

Dear Carson: Could you address proper buffet behavior for restaurant patrons? Please include some tips for children, as well, i.e. not using your fingers to grab food on the buffet bar and not getting close enough to breathe on the food. Sneeze guards are only effective for people over 4 feet tall! - The Buffet Police

Dear Reader: You just did and I thank you. Parents out there, I hope you read this.

Write to Ask Carson, The Augusta Chronicle, PO Box 1928, Augusta, GA 30903-1928. Send e-mail to askcarson@comcast.net. Carson Elliott's Web site is at www.theproperthing.com.