Author Topic: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby  (Read 7261 times)

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siamesecat2965

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Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« on: September 30, 2013, 12:26:32 PM »
Third letter - http://www.uexpress.com/dearabby/?uc_full_date=20130929'

LW hosts a dinner party, for eight, and served an "expensive meat" veggie, salad and great dessert, and was shocked that some (?), all (?) guests asked for leftovers!  She said she felt if they were nervy enough to ask, they deserved them, but DA disgagreed.

She said she would never ask, as it was rude, alhtough she did point out some hosts do offer. She also told the LW if she wanted to keep them for herself, she should have said no, politely, of course. I think the LW's guests were rude in asking. IF she had offered, fine, but she didnt. I think she also should have polished her spine, although  Ican see how she might have felt put on the spot.

I totally agree with this. I would never ask someone who hosted a dinner party for leftovers. When I host, if I have a lot, I will offer, but if not, I don't, and no one has ever asked me for any either. But my dinnes are usually less formal, and consist of something like lasagne, where there is potential for a lot of leftovers.  I also host friends for Thanksgiving, and since its just 3 of us, I always offer, but only one takes me up on it!!!

But if I had made invididual steak, or something where there wasn't a lot left, I wouldn't offer as it would be another meal for me.

Peregrine

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2013, 12:36:12 PM »
The only way I would ever dream of asking for a leftover would be if I the host/ess offered dessert, but I knew I was too full to eat it at the time.  I might (and it would highly depend on the situation and my relationship to the host) if I might ask to have a dessert to go.

However, my answer is given through the lens of how people in my social group host.  My group tends to host family dinners, rather than dinner parties.  These are usually much more casual, have very casual food, and often as not an offer is made to bring something (dessert, wine, a salad, some fresh garden produce to round out the meal etc.) and is normally accepted.  So asking for a dessert to go would not be out of place.  At a formal dinner party with people that was completely hosted would involve me bringing a bottle of wine for the hosts and asking for no leftovers!

Dragonflymom

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2013, 12:56:57 PM »
I've had someone ask for leftovers once, but it was a small gathering, her husband found out he couldn't make it at the last minute, and I'd made something he particularly liked.  Under those circumstances I didn't think it was rude, but I think it would be in almost any other circumstances.
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siamesecat2965

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2013, 12:59:00 PM »
I've had someone ask for leftovers once, but it was a small gathering, her husband found out he couldn't make it at the last minute, and I'd made something he particularly liked.  Under those circumstances I didn't think it was rude, but I think it would be in almost any other circumstances.

I'd be totally fine with this! In fact, if I knew someone's DH couldn't make it at the last mintue, I'd put together a doggie bag for him!


menley

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2013, 01:00:35 PM »
It's funny - I would never dream of asking for leftovers myself. Yet I wouldn't have a problem with it if my friends did.

I don't generally cook what I would term "expensive" meals for friends - yes, it certainly costs more than it would to just cook for my family, but I'm not serving caviar and Dom. I think I'd actually be flattered - if they want to take some home, then they liked it!

whiskeytangofoxtrot

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2013, 01:05:05 PM »
I've had someone ask for leftovers once, but it was a small gathering, her husband found out he couldn't make it at the last minute, and I'd made something he particularly liked.  Under those circumstances I didn't think it was rude, but I think it would be in almost any other circumstances.

I'd be totally fine with this! In fact, if I knew someone's DH couldn't make it at the last mintue, I'd put together a doggie bag for him!

Absolutely- in fact, I'd reserve his portion before dinner was served.

We don't formally entertain much, but I've never had anyone ask for doggie bags when we do. Informal gatherings with friends and family holiday dinners are more the case for us, and it's usually the opposite- there's always an abundance, and everybody tries to get everybody else to take leftovers :D

anniehawks

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2013, 08:00:26 PM »
In our circle of friends we used to have a couple that hardly ever socialized together.  The husband preferred to stay home, while the wife was always ready to be out and about.  That was fine, except at the end of the evening, the wife would always ask for a paper plate and fill it up to take home to her antisocial husband.  She never asked if it was okay.  She would just fill up the plate and go. 

katycoo

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2013, 08:41:02 PM »
I think I'd be a little put out if a guest asked for leftovers but it really depends on context of each individual circumstance.  I'd probably offer.

Outdoor Girl

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2013, 10:12:37 PM »
I would be very unhappy if guests asked for leftovers.  I make up my own frozen dinners and I would likely have cooked extra just so I could do that.  If there are things I don't want to keep (like fresh bread and dessert, 'cause I'd eat it all in short order), I'd offer them.  But otherwise?  The leftovers are all mine.

Edited to fix a word
« Last Edit: October 01, 2013, 10:06:48 AM by Outdoor Girl »
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MissNomer

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2013, 10:35:38 PM »
This actually came up for me - I had made Passover dinner for myself and my friends, who are not Jewish but were interested in learning about the holiday. There were only three of us but I cooked a whole bunch, as I was keeping kosher for Passover and was planning on having the leftovers for the next few days.

One of the attendees after dinner asked how much of the leftovers he could take home.  ??? It was kind of awkward explaining I had plans for the leftovers. He wasn't offended ("Hey, no harm in asking!") but I admit I was a bit out out.

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hannahmollysmom

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2013, 02:57:52 AM »
My kids always ask for leftovers, and that is a given, but I think I would be taken aback if a guest had asked without me offering.

I think I would just say "I'm sorry, but I have plans for the leftovers." and leave it at that. I would probably add a thank you for the compliment of them wanting to take some home.

Pen^2

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2013, 06:35:00 AM »
If I'm having several people over and I end up with too much food, I'll sometimes offer leftovers to people if they want, especially if the leftovers are of the desserty-kind and the people have children. They're often very happy to help me reduce the amount of food I'll have remaining.

But that doesn't happen often.

I personally wouldn't ask a host for leftovers. It's not a restaurant where you pay for a certain amount of food that is then yours to take home if you desire. You have a host who is kindly offering you food they have prepared (either by cooking, buying, or by others bringing on their behalf). You have no entitlement to that food. If you don't eat much for some reason, then you have no right to some set amount of food (like at a restaurant where you have paid for X amount of food) and can't just take what you didn't eat home.

I can see that in some cases, like Dragonflymom said, it's fine. But I don't think the guests have any entitlement to the food beyond what they eat from what the host offers them. I'm not sure if it's rude to just ask, but it's certainly rude to expect to be able to take the host's leftover food, like the odd lady in anniehawks' story.

I'm not sure how I'd deal with all my guests asking to take extra food home. That would be awkward. "Um, no, actually, it's my food that we were planning on, you know, eating..."

Zilla

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2013, 08:21:10 AM »
Family, close family, I can see this happening if the offer hadn't been made first.  But in the scenario described?  Oh my heavens no.  Never.

lowspark

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2013, 09:04:48 AM »
I think it's terribly rude for the guests to ask. I'm in the habit of offering when I want to. For example, I hosted a baby shower a couple of weeks ago and offered leftovers to the last lingering guests. Mainly I wanted to divest myself of the desserts but I also offered the other tidbits. But I cannot imagine that any one of my friends would have actually asked me had I not initially made the offer.

Even when my kids come over for dinner, they really don't ask. Again, I usually offer (not always though).

In the case of someone asking me, it would totally depend on
1. who was doing the asking
2. what the particular leftover was, with the following in mind:
    a. how much was left
    b. what previoius plans I'd had in mind for the leftovers

But yes, I think it's ok to say no.

Outdoor Girl

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Re: Doggie bags at dinner parties - today's Dear Abby
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2013, 10:08:11 AM »
If someone asked for a true doggy bag, though, for food still on their plate that they couldn't finish, I'd be OK with that.  If it was on someone's plate, I'd be pitching it anyway.
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