Mar 022010

I’m not done!

I received an email a few weeks ago from a reader who wanted to vent and thought this blog would be a good place to express his frustration. I was happy to receive his email and upon reading his email, I could not agree more with his annoyance.

He was frustrated that when he goes out to dinner his plate is cleared while other people at the table are still eating. That in fact it is quite rude to clear a plate while others are still eating.  It makes for an awkward eating environment, forcing people to think they either ate to fast, or ate too slow, and should be rushed. My other personnel frustration is when a plate is taken away from you and you haven’t finished eating!  I thought, I would write about it more for food for thought and then look at how to let people know you are in fact finished. Also different cultures have different ways of letting you know when they are done.  Please let me know of any other specific cultural tradition and if you have a frustration like this to vent. I would love to hear.

I know there are many times, I take a break while I am eating. Please see the illustration below showing how your fork and knife should be place to indicate that you are not done yet. Knife and fork are criss-crossed at 8 and 4 if your plate is a clock face.



Okay now I am done. Knife should be placed turned inward and the fork is resting next to it. Using the analogy of the plate being the face of a clock, knife and fork are resting at 5 in the direction of 11. In British culture the fork is face up.



Most importantly plates should not be cleared until everyone has finished.

Asian Cultures

When eating food served in bowl with a lid, replace the lid on the bowl when you have finished.

When you have finished your meal, place your chopsticks on the chopstick rest when provided as they were when you started. If there is no rest make one with the chopstick wrapper.

Illustration Credit: Ask and about Clothes

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