Re: [gardeners] Re: tools (
Thu, 10 Dec 1998 10:10:05 +0000

Penny wrote of her. husband's " one male cousin, however, who was to 
> manner born, and who would certainly utilize an ice cream fork 
> if it were put at his dinner place. I saw him discretely walking 
> around all three tables at Thanksgiving before the dinner was 
> served, and reversing the direction of each and every knife so 
> the cutting edge would face the plate"...... 

My dear Penny, at the risk of being pedagogical, may I draw your 
attention to your phrase, "manner born." The correct phrase, my dear, 
is "to the manor born" implying that the person was not born in a 
hovel but was born in a Manor house and thus cognizant of the 
customs of polite society.

Also, do you know why one always faces the cutting edge of the knife 
into the plate instead of toward the diner to one's right? Please 
consider:  were the dangerous edge of the knife faced outward one 
would run of risk of causing a fellow diner grevious harm. This 
custom of courtesy to one's companions is of many centuries duration.

Your husband's cousin's discreet correction of another's gaffe is 
commendable. As for the notion that there is something queer in the 
use of specialized tableware, let us never forget is 
generally the strong and the confidently masculine person who most 
often displays a cultured manner. But never, of course, to the pain 
or chagrin of another. As I said, the cousin of your husband is a 
true gentleman from whom we all could learn much.