So, what ever happened to common courtesy? Politeness? Etiquette?
It seems like people are just rude and self-centered nowadays. There is a great article in the new issue of ELLE magazine about people and their food hangups. You can't have a good old-fashioned dinner party anymore without worrying who's a vegetarian, who is on Atkins, who isn't eating sugar, who is only eating white foods this month. You practically have to get a list of people's food issues before you have a party and then try to figure out what the heck to serve.
The only food issues I really have are that I don't eat veal or lamb and I try to avoid red meat for personal reasons. I really can't eat veal or lamb. It makes me sick. But if I'm served red meat, I'll eat it because I don't want to offend my host. I would never want to embarrass someone over food they are serving me when I am the guest.
I have also experienced the following:
1) When you make plans with someone and then cancel for a better offer....that's rude.
2) When you show up to a dinner party or special event and bring someone who wasn't invited without asking...that's rude.
3) When someone brings you a host/hostess gift and then you make a big show about how you don't like it...that's rude.
4) When you show up late or make people wait on you when you are a guest...that's rude.
5) When you complain about what you are being served when you are a guest...that's rude.
What is so hard about just being polite? If you don't like something on your plate, just push it aside. Don't eat it. And don't make a big deal about it. When you RSVP in the affirmative for an event, you should go unless you are sick or something major comes up. People plan events according to RSVPs and it's rude to cancel for no good reason at the last minute. Also, if you have RSVP'd in the negative, don't show up at the last minute after all.
What is so hard about all of this? I'm not perfect but I'm making an effort to be more polite. I'm even reading classics of etiquette like Leticia Baldridge and Emily Post. Because common courtesy goes a long way in keeping people from getting offended and having their feelings hurt.