The luring, intimidating, delicious and seductive foods have the ability of captivating your salivary glands and brain by the mere sight. We love food, hence a table full of delicacies is highly appealing and all we wish to do is dive right into them. However, in occasions like professional gatherings and joint family meets, it is required to have your strong foodie emotions under control.
There are certain dos and don’ts, which every individual must follow in a gathering over the table. These are known as table manners. Just like we are taught about common school, public, and professional mannerisms all our lives, these specific table manners should also always be kept at the back of mind. These manners help boost the image of a person instantaneously.
Hence, here is a list of few basic table manners that one must follow to put a long lasting impression –
Thank You and Please.
Saying thank you and please, are the basic manners that are applicable in every aspect of life. They should not be forgotten on the tables as well. Make sure to thank the host and the people around the table for their small help in passing the dishes or any other kind gesture. Also, remember to remain polite and add a little “Please” before asking anyone for favor on the table.
Wait for the Host.
The host is the beautiful person who has taken the effort of preparing the gorgeous dinner for you. Hence, waiting for a little till the host joins the table is a courtesies act. In children, this act must be taught from the early age. Even in regular family dinner, every person on the table should wait for the cook to arrive and then get started with food. It is a way of showing gratitude and thankfulness for the food.
Post and Pre-Meal Practices.
No matter how many times your stomach has growled for food, it is always a bad idea to sit at the table before a call from the host. Hence, wait till the food is ready and served, then hop onto the chair to sit. Plus, to be the perfect gentlemen, escort the ladies to their chair by politely pulling out the chairs for them. As the saying goes, “Ladies first”.
After you are done with your share of food, put the fork and knife together to let others know. It is kind to wait for everyone to finish their meals before leaving the table. However, when in need to leave the table earlier, then make sure to politely excuse yourself from the other.
Since childhood, we have been taught not to talk on the table. The rule still applies. One effect of talking with full mouth is the chance to choke on the food causing threat to life. Believe it or not, merely shoving food can also be fatal, and people have lost life in such incidents. Hence, better be careful of the disaster. Secondly, it is absurd to split from the mouth all over the table.
While on the table, don’t stuff yourself with more food than you can eat. Munching with cheeks exploring with excessive food items puts the other members on the table in an uncomfortable situation. Taking small bites helps to chew the food properly before engulfing and keeping the eating pace slow. Plus, it will surely keep you from away the disgusted glares of the other member in the table.
Proper Body Language.
Some dinners or lunches can be nerve-wracking. The introductory lunch of your girlfriend in front of your parents, or the sophisticated business meet, has the potential of getting you sweaty feet. The best way to do well in these situations is letting the sweats be only in the feet. Avoid the reflection of nervousness by playing with the utensils, or jiggling your knees. Moreover, if you are one of the many practitioners of the trait of keeping the elbows on the table, then get rid of it at the soonest. Elbows are not invited on the surface of the table.
Use the napkin.
Napkins are the common member of every meal table, making it a must-use agent. Before approaching the meals, make sure to spread the napkin nicely on the lap to prevent your attire from getting destructed by the food slipping out of your utensils. While opening the nicely folded napkin, don’t shake vigorously or snap. A nice and soft flick should be enough for it to straighten out. Moreover, with finger foods do not lick them directly off the hand in front of the other guests. Use napkins for rescue in such situations.
While on a social or professional gathering, use the spoons, knives, forks and other appropriate cutlery for the dishes. Do not shove food right into the food from your hand, unless it requires the same. Eating food by hand is rude and also makes the people around the table uncomfortable. If you believe that for some foods cutlery are of no use and will absolutely need to use hands, you are wrong. Even burgers can be eaten with fork and knife! Hence, it is a good idea to learn all the skills beforehand. When in definite need to use a bare hand, make sure to use tissues and napkins.
Moreover, clashes of utensils are not huge setback. You must do your best to eat in silence by preventing the sounds of the clashing utensils.
Don’t fart, burp or use a toothpick.
Except for breathing, any other kind of release of gas on the table is not acceptable. Just the thought of farting and burping on a table full of food is disgusting. Hence, avoid such situations in worst conditions. Moreover, using a toothpick in front of the guests in a table is equally gross. You may excuse yourself to go the washroom if the condition is extremely bad or wait till the dinner is wrapped up to do such private tasks.
Complimenting and Thanking.
This is the most important of all. Easiest to follow, and even easier to forget! So make sure to remind yourself of it at the table.
As mentioned earlier, hosts take in large effort in preparing meals. Hence, remember to thank them for the food that was being served. Also, add few compliments which will surely overwhelm them. Even in restaurants, if the food was extremely delicious, do not shy away from taking the opportunity to thank the chef and the waiters for the food. Small gestures like this speak greatly about a person.
Apart from all these table manners, the biggest task to remember is not to waste food. Take the amount of serving that you can finish. Leaving food on the plate is the worst manner out of all. Hence, have great enjoyable meals with all these table manners in mind.