Author Topic: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?  (Read 23810 times)

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nayberry

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #135 on: February 22, 2013, 05:40:30 PM »
Nope, it is not "OK" for a mother to take her child's food away without asking permission first. This isn't a matter of parental authority - it is general politeness.

Let's say you were eating with a married couple. The wife orders an appetizer, and when it arrives, as she starts to take a mouthful, her husband grabs the plate and asks, "Does anyone want some of my wife's appetizers?" Would you not think, at a minimum, he is being rude to her, in not at least asking, "Hey, can we share those?"

If the family tradition is to share appetizers, it does not spare the mother from the minimal common courtesy to her child to ask, "Hey, can we have some?" Basic politeness requires you to ask such a question, even if the expected answer is "yes, of course".

We have an "appetizers are to be shared family", so your scenario above would be fine with me. No, more than fine; it would be expected. My kids are always welcome to order an appetizer if they want one, but they know it's for the whole table. There would not need to be a discussion because that's the way we've always done it.

I don't think that we can know, without knowing if child in question comes from an "apps are to be shared" family, if the mom was rude or not. Nor do I think we should try to read anything into her facial expression.

In that situation I would expect the wife to pick up her plate and ask if anyone wants some of her appetizer. If her husband did it I would be making some uncharitable assumptions about him.

Same.

+1

in the UK we had a funny (but not e-hell approved i am sure) advert for quorn (i think)  where one of the family tries to take food from another members plate and the line "touch my food, feel my fork" (with fork poised..) is used, 

if i am out with friends/family we normally discuss what is being ordered, ie garlic bread, normally order enough to share,  and sometimes i am out with a group and we have one or two veggies with us and we check if they want to order just for themselves (tapas for instance) or share, pizza...  but i'd never assume that something was for everyone to dig in


and i think the mum was rude



DottyG - if i order dessert my friends know better than to presume i'm sharing ;)  i might offer a taste but normally only to my hubby, sometimes not even he gets to have any (no giggling!)

Sharnita

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #136 on: February 22, 2013, 05:42:16 PM »
In general, desserts aren't usually served remotely the same way as apps.  They don't come in pieces/sticks/sections so sharing can be a bit harder. I frequently do offer to share dessert but the presentation of appas almost always lend themselves to sharing, dessert (salad and soup) not so much.

DottyG

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #137 on: February 22, 2013, 05:44:12 PM »
Quote
They don't come in pieces/sticks/sections

That would depend on what it was.  There are certainly desserts that have distinct pieces/sticks/sections.  Let's assume it's one of those kinds for my question if that's pertinent.


Judah

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #138 on: February 22, 2013, 05:45:43 PM »
So, those of you "appetizers are always to share" posters, what about desserts?  A couple of us have touched on it, but what do you think?

Do desserts have the same rules?  Are you required to share them as well?

(And, to all posters, what do you do if you don't want to share, but the waiter brings forks for everyone making you feel like you have to anyway?)

No, desserts aren't to share, unless we've agreed to it before ordering.  DH and I almost always share a dessert if we have one at all.  Appetizers are in a class by themselves in this regard.

I've never had a waiter bring a fork for everyone to share one dessert. I suppose I would say something like, "oh, I wasn't intending to share. You all should go ahead and order if you want dessert."  :) But I'm not one to give in to this type of social pressure.
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Aeris

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #139 on: February 22, 2013, 05:46:07 PM »
In general, desserts aren't usually served remotely the same way as apps.  They don't come in pieces/sticks/sections so sharing can be a bit harder. I frequently do offer to share dessert but the presentation of appas almost always lend themselves to sharing, dessert (salad and soup) not so much.

Cheese sticks are fairly easy to share, but most appetizers I order are not in pieces/sticks/sections at all. This may well depend on the type of restaurant, but whether an appetizer is easily sharable based on configuration seems to be not at all a sure thing.

DottyG

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #140 on: February 22, 2013, 05:46:39 PM »
Judah, why the distinction between the two?  (Asking this seriously)

DottyG

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #141 on: February 22, 2013, 05:48:05 PM »
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I've never had a waiter bring a fork for everyone to share one dessert. I suppose I would say something like, "oh, I wasn't intending to share. You all should go ahead and order if you want dessert."   But I'm not one to give in to this type of social pressure.

What I really hate is when the dessert is for my birthday, and the waiter presumes to bring utensils for all.  I'm sitting there with my plate being passed around the table thinking, "But that was MY birthday treat :( "


Sharnita

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #142 on: February 22, 2013, 05:51:13 PM »
The apps I order always seem to be and the desserts never seem to be.  SInce I am answering for myself reversing for either is impossible for me to answer.  For example cheese sticks, bread sticks, chips, quesadillas - all pieces or sections.  Ice cream, pie, cake - not smaller pieces or sections.

Judah

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #143 on: February 22, 2013, 06:00:33 PM »
Judah, why the distinction between the two?  (Asking this seriously)

Partly because they just are. It's just the way it's always been done, IME. And I suppose that's partly because appetizers are generally a platter full of something easy to share.  You wouldn't share a chicken breast or a salad, but apps are usually individual bite-sized somethings that are easy to share out.  And partly because, to me, apps aren't meant to fill you up but to take the edge off your hunger while you wait for your dinner.

And this is going to make it sound like I have all kinds of crazy rules for dining, but honestly, I'd never given this much thought until this thread, but, to me, an appetizer  is not the same as a starter. A starter is a salad, or bowl of soup, or some other individually sized first course to your meal.  An app is the pre-meal tidbit to tide you over until the meal starts, usually with a starter of some sort. And in my experience, starters and appetizers have their own sections on a menu.
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DottyG

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #144 on: February 22, 2013, 06:05:12 PM »
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Ice cream, pie, cake

Well, no.  Those items are not in sections.  You are right.  But there are desserts that are in sections.  For instance, sopapillas are distinct items that come more than one on a plate.  I was in a restaurant not long ago where they had these little "poof" thingies that were definitely in pieces.

I'm not talking about ice cream, pie or cake.


DottyG

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #145 on: February 22, 2013, 06:07:04 PM »
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an appetizer  is not the same as a starter

That's an interesting distinction.  I'm not sure I've thought about it before.  I guess I've always thought they were the same thing.  Something else to think about!


Sharnita

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #146 on: February 22, 2013, 06:07:36 PM »
Quote
Ice cream, pie, cake

Well, no.  Those items are not in sections.  You are right.  But there are desserts that are in sections.  For instance, sopapillas are distinct items that come more than one on a plate.  I was in a restaurant not long ago where they had these little "poof" thingies that were definitely in pieces.

I'm not talking about ice cream, pie or cake.

You also aren't talking about things I order for dessert so you aren't asking a question I can answer.

Aquamarine

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #147 on: February 22, 2013, 06:09:56 PM »
If I ordered an appetizer for myself and let's say my mother or a spouse decided I didn't need to eat it all and offered it up to the table I would be ticked off and would correct them saying "no I ordered this because I wanted it, I did not order it for the table, you misunderstood".  I would expect most people ordering something for themselves would feel the same way.  The mother offering the food to others was rude and presumptuous and apparently OK with embarrassing her own child.  That being said I would talk to my child later in private and tell them that it would be a nice thing to offer some of the appetizer to others unless it was going to be their dinner portion.  A nice thing to do but not necessarily a required thing to do.

When I order appetizers for the table I make it crystal clear they are for everyone, when this is not made clear I assume the appetizers others order are for themselves.

Some people seem to believe that everything must be shared with everyone, I am not one of those people.
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Hmmmmm

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #148 on: February 22, 2013, 06:12:52 PM »
My group dining expectations is this:
-If you order a group type appetizer (cheese sticks, calamari, fried mushrooms) that comes in pieces then you offer some to your dining companions.
-If you are dining with a group and only one person orders an appetizer but you and other's don't then when you are offered part of the app you decline. If the person who ordered the app stops eating it and it's just sitting there, it is fine to say "you know I think I will try one".  You can also accept if the person who orders it says "No really, take some. I just really wanted some calamari but if I eat all of this I won't be able to eat my main course."
-If you are dining with just one person and you want an appetizer you discuss options with the your dining companion. Actually, I beleive in any group dining instance you should ask your companions if they plan to order an appetizer because if everyone says no, then you should ask if they are ok with you ordering one since your request will delay them getting their main course at most restaurants.
-If you order an appetizer that is obviously meant for one person such as a cup of soup, I see no need to offer to the other tablemates.

I've taught my kids the same rules so would be very suprised if they ordered cheese sticks and didn't offer some to others.  My kids were also swimmers and I know how hungry an after practice teen or tween is, but that didn't give them the right to forget what I consider to be their etiquette rules. I would have done similar to the mom and picked up the cheese basket and offered to the other dining companions because I would have thought my DD's hunger had taken over her ability to be gracious.

On the dessert discussion I've also seen instances where one person orders a dessert while the rest of the table turns it down but still the waiter brings multiple forks or spoons. I always find this preseumtious of the waiter. 


DottyG

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Re: Rude to offer child’s appetizer to others?
« Reply #149 on: February 22, 2013, 06:15:36 PM »
Sharnita, then you're probably not the person that can best respond to the first part of the question, you may be right.

So what about the second part.  Let's say you do have your cake, pie or ice cream....and everyone at the table gets a spoon when your dessert is set on the table in front of you (usually, it's with a comment of "I figured everyone would want to share this, so I brought extras for the table!!!!!!!!" with a huge grin by the waiter ::) )?  What do you do?  Do you have to share?  If you don't want to, what can you say or do?  I'm asking honestly, because I'm not sure what the most polite answer is!  Sometimes I may be the only one to order dessert at the table, but I really don't want to share it around with everyone.  And I kinda resent the fact that the restaurant is putting me in a spot where I feel an obligation to do so.