Letters to Homer: Dining Etiquette
It seems that somehow my letters to you have been getting intercepted. I have gotten a few emails from people that suggested I write to you about great dining spots here in Argentina.
At first I thought that would make for a good topic, but then I remembered that your idea of a “…great dining spot…” is somewhere that they only change the grease in the fryer every other month or so.
If you and the Missus come to visit Ale and me in Buenos Aires, we want to take you out to dinner somewhere. But I´ve got to warn you. Your idea of burping loud and long is NOT the way you show your appreciation for a good meal here.
So Homer, here are just a few things to keep in mind while you´re in town.
I know you´re left handed, but if you´re ever asked to pour the wine, don´t use your left hand. If you do this, you are telling the person that you don´t like them.
I know that you think Budwesier is the national drink of America, but here in Argentina it´s a tea called mate. Served in a gourd with an elegant silver straw, you take a sip and pass the gourd to your neighbor. Don´t drink it all down like you tried to do that can of Red Bull Energy drink at the county fair.
Homer, you know I love you like a brother, but sometimes your table manners need some work. Please practice on these things before you head this way.
First, don’t start eating until the host says, “Buen provecho!”
Second, don’t switch your knife and fork in your hand. Keep the knife in your right hand and the fork in your left. When you cut your meat, hold the meat with your fork in your left hand, and cut the meat with the knife in your right hand. When you’re done eating, cross your knife and fork across the plate.
I know your Mom always told you to keep your elbows off the table and that you should eat with one hand and put the other hand in your lap. Here rest your wrists on the edge of the table always making sure to keep your hands in plain sight. If you rest one hand in your lap, then people can’t see what you’re doing and they think you’re trying to be sneaky.
Make sure you always pass the food to your left. Never to your right.
When you’re eating the salad Homer, NEVER cut the lettuce. Fold it with your knife and fork into a little bundle that you can pick up with your fork.
Buddy, I know that your manners are great – for eating out in Bent Fork at Lillie’s Tavern, but here in Argentina you might need some help.
I love you buddy and Ale and I are looking forward to seeing you and the Missus.
Lost somewhere in the barrios, I remain your amigo,
~ by Jerry Nelson on February 14, 2013.
Posted in Argentina, journeyamerica, Letters to Homer
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