Author Topic: Meeting the Illustrious  (Read 2949 times)

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Jocelyn

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Meeting the Illustrious
« on: February 02, 2013, 12:35:40 PM »
Or, S/o Justin Bieber's overallls (see etiquette of the rich and famous)

Short context: Mr. Bieber was criticized for meeting with the PM wearing less than formal clothing

This reminded me of a very, very old etiquette book,  which commented on a lady who had an unexpected visitor (in the days before telephones). She was at work in the kitchen, so she was wearing old clothing, had her hair tied up in a cloth, and was in the middle of a messy task. Instead of asking the guest to wait while she went upstairs, changed her clothes and fixed her hair, she immediately came into the reception hall, having only taken time to wipe her hands clean on the way.
The question was raised: was she disrespectful of her illustrious guest, to greet him in her shabby workclothes, or was she showing great respect that her eagerness to greet him overshadowed her natural desire not to be seen in disarray?
Thoughts?

Perfect Circle

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2013, 12:41:23 PM »
I think if you turn up unannounced you must take the people as you find them.
In all this talk of time
Talk is fine
But I don't want to stay around
Why can't we pantomime, just close our eyes
And sleep sweet dreams
Me and you with wings on our feet

Bijou

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2013, 01:12:03 PM »
Or, S/o Justin Bieber's overallls (see etiquette of the rich and famous)

Short context: Mr. Bieber was criticized for meeting with the PM wearing less than formal clothing

This reminded me of a very, very old etiquette book,  which commented on a lady who had an unexpected visitor (in the days before telephones). She was at work in the kitchen, so she was wearing old clothing, had her hair tied up in a cloth, and was in the middle of a messy task. Instead of asking the guest to wait while she went upstairs, changed her clothes and fixed her hair, she immediately came into the reception hall, having only taken time to wipe her hands clean on the way.
The question was raised: was she disrespectful of her illustrious guest, to greet him in her shabby workclothes, or was she showing great respect that her eagerness to greet him overshadowed her natural desire not to be seen in disarray?
Thoughts?
He probably went to visit her because she is the kind of person who doesn't think she must rush and dress up to greet an unexpected visitor.  On the other hand, it lets him know that she is busy and maybe he should call first.  Shame on him!
I've never knitted anything I could recognize when it was finished.  Actually, I've never finished anything, much to my family's relief.

Amava

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2013, 01:44:57 PM »
If I'm at home I just don't open the door if I'm not expecting anyone / ready to see someone.
I don't think I would be disrespectful to open the door if I choose to, in my work clothes, though. 

If I'm not at home but somewhere in public, where I cannot "hide and pretend I'm not there", or if I'm working in the front yard when someone drops by, I also don't think it's disrespectful to wear what I'm wearing.
If I was expecting someone for a formal visit, I would probably dress up. Now if I was doing a work, in public, that /required/ informal clothes (dirty work or a show that requires certain costumes etc) then I wouldn't dress differently even if I knew someone special was coming to my workplace that day.



cicero

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2013, 01:54:08 PM »
I can't remember the last time a visitor (illustrious or not) showed up at my door unexpectedly, other than a neighbor asking to borrow something.

but if a guest did show up unexepecteldy - i would rather let them in the house and offer them something to drink/restroom, then run and change.

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Twik

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2013, 02:31:47 PM »
I must admit, I've never established a plan on what to do if a celebrity showed up on my doorstep. Now, I'm going to have to.
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AtraBecca

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2013, 11:34:23 PM »
If people show up unannounced at my place, they get me in my PJ's  >:D Ratty, slightly holey PJ's. So I guess you know where I stand.  ;D

Iris

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2013, 12:07:43 AM »
Within reason I think people have to take you as they find you. OTOH friends stopped by unannounced the other day. It was stinking hot and I was just wearing a tank top. A skin tight tank top on my chubby body, with no bra. I opened the door a crack said "Hi guys, you'll have to wait a moment" and then raced into my room to throw on a baggy tshirt. There is no-one on earth that I do not have an immediate relationship with that I was going to let see me in that shirt. Doctor Who could have been at the door saying "I only have twenty minutes to save the world and need your computer!" and he still would have had to wait.
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Penguin_ar

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2013, 07:03:59 AM »
but if a guest did show up unexepecteldy - i would rather let them in the house and offer them something to drink/restroom, then run and change.

POD.
People that come here unexpectedly are either good friends (in which case, they can see me at my worst), or people coming due to an emergency. IN either case, they get greeted, settled, then I change.

Thipu1

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2013, 11:34:29 AM »
Many years ago, I met one of the most formal people in the world in the least formal situation possible.

  Some acquaintances and I were in the habit of taking a run in Central Park after work.

 The Pope was visiting NYC at the time and, one evening, there were police at the Reservoir.  The Pope was going to visit a school in Harlem and the East Drive in the park would be his route.  As a result, the drive would be closed for the next hour or so. 

Well, it was a nice evening so several of us decided to stay.  We'd done a warm-up lap and it seemed an interesting thing to see the Pope's car drive by. We were dressed in running shorts, stone-crusher sneakers and singlets.  We thought it would be a closed car completely surrounded by police and
driving at speed.

It wasn't that at all. The motorcade was slow.  The Pope was standing in the rear of his car and we were asked if we wanted to run alongside the car for a block or two. 

Why not?  We did it.  The Pope, who was interested in fitness and sport, blessed us and applauded us
 along the way.  The car even stopped long enough for one or two of us  to approach him and kiss his ring.  It was a wonderful experience.

When I got home that night, I called my mother to tell her the news.

She was appalled. 

'What?!!! You dared to kiss the Pope's ring while you were sweaty and half-naked?!!! 

Well, yes.  The Pope didn't seem to mind at all.  I certainly didn't. 





« Last Edit: February 03, 2013, 11:38:17 AM by Thipu1 »

cicero

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2013, 12:03:50 PM »
Many years ago, I met one of the most formal people in the world in the least formal situation possible.

  Some acquaintances and I were in the habit of taking a run in Central Park after work.

 The Pope was visiting NYC at the time and, one evening, there were police at the Reservoir.  The Pope was going to visit a school in Harlem and the East Drive in the park would be his route.  As a result, the drive would be closed for the next hour or so. 

Well, it was a nice evening so several of us decided to stay.  We'd done a warm-up lap and it seemed an interesting thing to see the Pope's car drive by. We were dressed in running shorts, stone-crusher sneakers and singlets.  We thought it would be a closed car completely surrounded by police and
driving at speed.

It wasn't that at all. The motorcade was slow.  The Pope was standing in the rear of his car and we were asked if we wanted to run alongside the car for a block or two. 

Why not?  We did it.  The Pope, who was interested in fitness and sport, blessed us and applauded us
 along the way.  The car even stopped long enough for one or two of us  to approach him and kiss his ring.  It was a wonderful experience.

When I got home that night, I called my mother to tell her the news.

She was appalled. 

'What?!!! You dared to kiss the Pope's ring while you were sweaty and half-naked?!!! 

Well, yes.  The Pope didn't seem to mind at all.  I certainly didn't.
oh wow! that is way cool!

(and my grandmother probably would've reacted the same as your mom!)

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Winterlight

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2013, 03:46:24 PM »
Or, S/o Justin Bieber's overallls (see etiquette of the rich and famous)

Short context: Mr. Bieber was criticized for meeting with the PM wearing less than formal clothing

This reminded me of a very, very old etiquette book,  which commented on a lady who had an unexpected visitor (in the days before telephones). She was at work in the kitchen, so she was wearing old clothing, had her hair tied up in a cloth, and was in the middle of a messy task. Instead of asking the guest to wait while she went upstairs, changed her clothes and fixed her hair, she immediately came into the reception hall, having only taken time to wipe her hands clean on the way.
The question was raised: was she disrespectful of her illustrious guest, to greet him in her shabby workclothes, or was she showing great respect that her eagerness to greet him overshadowed her natural desire not to be seen in disarray?
Thoughts?

If there was no way for someone else who was cleaned up to let him in, then I think she was perfectly correct.
If wisdom’s ways you wisely seek,
Five things observe with care,
To whom you speak,
Of whom you speak,
And how, and when, and where.
Caroline Lake Ingalls

Kendo_Bunny

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2013, 06:43:30 PM »
In one of the Betsy~Tacy books (Betsy in Spite of Herself), she mentions two such visits.

In one case, it is pre-telephone, and the minister's wife happens to come to call on the afternoon her mother had chosen to do some heavy housecleaning. Mrs. Ray sent her daughter to open the door while she washed her hands, took off her dusty apron, and took the towel off her hair, and greeted the minister's wife with perfect courtesy, then set everything at ease by talking about housework. The minister's wife was equally gracious, and the two ladies ended up having a nice, comfortable afternoon together.

Years later, Betsy is surprised dyeing Easter eggs (a rather sweaty, messy business before microwaves and instant dyes) with her little sister by her kind of snobby beau and his much snobbier sister. She excuses herself to wash her hands and take her towel/apron off, then tries to continue being gracious by having her little sister show off the eggs and make light of what messy work it can be. However, the snobby beau and sister are not particularly gracious about it, and make it clear she has made a bad impression by not being in perfect order when they showed up, unannounced (and both parties did have telephones, so no excuse there either).

Being taken unawares isn't rude in and of itself, especially in pre-telephone days. Making the most of it is the most gracious thing to do, and a properly mannered guest will work with you.

Thipu1

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2013, 10:48:29 AM »
A properly mannered guest would not drop in without prior warning unless it was an emergency situation.  If that was the case, the visitor would also probably not be her or his best. 

scotcat60

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Re: Meeting the Illustrious
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2013, 10:59:57 AM »
Being taken unawares isn't rude in and of itself, especially in pre-telephone days. Making the most of it is the most gracious thing to do, and a properly mannered guest will work with you.

Very true. The Betsy=Tacy situation sounds like the Anne of Green Gables books.

In Anne of Avolea, a famous author is unable to come for lunch when expected, but does so later when Anne is in the middle of changing the ticking on the feather bed. She has also put lotion on her freckles which turns out to be a dye, so her nose is red, plus there is nothing in the house for lunc. Luckily friend Diana helps out by providing some chicken, and Anne is able to change, and wash her nose.

In Anne of the Island, Anne's beau Roy Gardner tells her that his mother and sisters will call, but they come a day early, and Anne and her housemates are caught out in an untidy room, causing Priscilla to hide a chocoalte cake under a cushion in the inglenook seat, which gets squashed whne Mrs Gardener sits on it.