I drizzle a bit of dressing and eat a little from each section, working my way around the plate, adding dressing as needed once I reach the lower layers. But what is the preferred method?
When it comes to giant salads fitted in small bowls, one’s life — and dry-cleaning bill — is in one’s own hands. Your method is as good as any.
Miss Manners suggests you approach it like an archaeological dig, skillfully swirling and consolidating the further you approach the bottom. If it is any consolation, at least chopped and Cobb salads have the courtesy of coming in bite-size pieces. Their cruel sibling, the wedge salad, is not so generous.
Dear Miss Manners: For 50 years, I have enjoyed working with yarn. I gave complete baby sets (a sweater set, blanket and toy) to friends when their children came along. These were well received, with many compliments; pictures of them in use were shared with me, and I was frequently told these items would be saved as heirlooms for the baby's own children.
Twelve or 15 years would go by, and the friend would tell me out of the blue, "I had to discard your beautiful baby set. We just don't have room to keep everything from Terrence's childhood. I felt so terrible when I threw it in the dumpster." (This is a mental image I do not enjoy, either!) Then in another 10 or 12 years, they announce their excitement to be welcoming a grandchild, and ask me to make another baby set.
While I understand the need to downsize and that the gift is theirs to do with as they wish, I'm at a loss as to how to answer these requests. It feels as though they're asking me to negate their guilt, while knowing they've discarded a symbol of our friendship.
Items are discarded for various reasons over time, but I would never announce that I discarded someone's gift, no matter the circumstances or amount of time passed!
Can you suggest how I can politely respond to the announcement that my gift has been discarded? In the past I have simply said, "I understand." I now find great satisfaction in donating my creations to charities — and not knowing their fate!
You cannot chastise them, but you can politely express disappointment.
Miss Manners suggests something like: “Oh, that is too bad. If you no longer had use for it, I am sure that someone else might have. Perhaps even Terrence’s children someday, knowing that he enjoyed it so. Well, if you find yourself in the same position again, I would happily keep it for you or donate it, rather than have it go to waste.”
New Miss Manners columns are posted Monday through Saturday on washingtonpost.com/advice. You can send questions to Miss Manners at her website, missmanners.com. You can also follow her @RealMissManners.
2020, by Judith Martin