Monday, August 9, 2010

Until we meet again

Well hi there, my amazing readers and listeners.

Today is the last Etiquette Bitch blog post. I have grappled with this for weeks, tried to think of a story to tell (via podcast), tried to think of something funny and touching to say, and the mind just drew a blank.

It's time for me to mosey on. I've loved writing this blog, and even more, I've loved creating the podcasts. I appreciate the feedback and nice words I've recevied from all of you, whether in person at PAB, in the comments, in your emails to me or via your follows -- thank you. Seriously, it has made my day and warmed my heart to know you were listening and/or reading.

I've run out of steam and love for this Etiquette stuff. Like my twitter buddy shoutabyss said, "Based on what I see in the world around me I feel etiquette is a lost cause and a lost art. Sad."

Unfortunately, I had to agree. No matter how many blog posts and podcasts I do, there will still be that cell-phone-talking soccer mom who cuts you off in the parking lot; idiots will still yell at Tony Bennett as he performs; the tween before you at the movies will still talk on her cell phone and hold up the line.

There is something next up for me; it will involve a podcast, for sure. Please stay tuned. Please check back and I'll let you know where I end up. Etiquette Bitch will, indeed, create something new.

And before I end this blog, I just want to say, again, a hearty Thank You to you who read and/or listen. You've made the last three years worthwhile.

Now go enjoy the rest of summer.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Etiquette for public transportation

If you take public transportation (ever!) this is for you. This is just awesome.
Artist Jay Shells got tired of loud-music-blasters, disgusting food eaters, nail-clippers, and proselytizers on the he did something.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Click here: 5 Dos and Don'ts When Someone Dies

Ah, so many questions after someone passes away.

Is it okay to give money at a wake or funeral? Do I send flowers? Can I just mingle at a wake? Am I supposed to? What should I say to the grieving relatives? Is it okay to ask how someone died? I can wear my ratty gymshoes to the wake, right?

Click the title to find out. It'll cost you 10 m. of your time, about 13 if you listen to the music, too.

Song: Burial, Miike Snow

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Click here: Wedding Etiquette -- Those damn bachelorette parties!

Hey folks: It's wedding season, and this is the perfect post for you bachelorettes out there. Today I'm turning the blog over to reader CS 'cause I couldn'ta said it better myself.

My take? Click the title above to hear my thoughts on the bachelorette-parties-at-gay-bars issue. Running time:
6 m 17 s

As a gay man who has had to endure countless bachelorette parties at my local watering hole, I would like to add some advice:

It is incredibly insensitive to celebrate your marriage with a few hundred men who are not allowed to get married. So, in short: don't do it.

If you must, here are some bachelorette-party-at-gay-bar rules:

  1. Don't insist that gay men dance with you and then get upset when we refuse. If we wanted to dance with drunk women, we would go to a straight bar.

  2. Don't insist that gay men kiss you and then get upset when we refuse. If we wanted to kiss drunk women, we would go to a straight bar.

  3. Don't order time-consuming (and confusing) drinks and then leave a crappy tip. That is just rude! Similarly, don't order said drink and then stand in the service area and enjoy it. It is bad enough there's a long line behind you; you're now preventing the rest of us from ordering our beer.

  4. Don't assume that because we're gay we find your penis hat/necklace/jewelry/whatever "cute" and want to put our lips on it.

  5. If there are strippers or go-go dancers at the gay bar, don't try to dance with them and keep others away from the "goods."


Thanks, CS. Ladies, stay away from the gay bars. Trust me, it ain't your scene. (Yes, I realize you're keeping hubby secure by partying in a roomful of gay men all night. But it's still rude. Take a cue from The Hip Hop Hippie, and go watch some men dance for your pleasure instead. I'm married, and I'm hitting up Hollywood Men on my next LA trip. So you and your drunk friends can do similarly.)

Monday, July 5, 2010

Click here: Sometimes, we don't need to "Smile!"

You know those annoying people who tell you, "C'mon, it's not that bad, SMILE!" when you're having a crap day? Yeah, this is about them.

You never know what's going on with someone. Yes, in a perfect world, we'd all have positive, upbeat attitudes, no one would ever get cranky, and we'd all get along, hold hands, and sing "Kumbaya." But that's not reality.

So rather than telling someone how to look, how about you smile, and leave the other person alone?

Click the title to listen. Running time: 6 m 20 s.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Click here: The crappiest podcast ever

Well, at least I only waste 4.30 m. of your time.

EB isn't sure if she should carry on...but she had an amazing time at PAB2010. She'll be back for 2011.

Amazing people mentioned in this podcast: Tod Maffin (although he'll be dismayed that she didn't take his advice too well.)

Click the title to listen. 4 m 15 s.

I don't need to smell you

Sigh. If only this sign were posted everywhere, not just at The National Arts Centre in Ottawa.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Etiquette Podcast: What do you say to the double-sipper?

Hey Etiquette Bitch:

This has happened three times this week, so I need to know how to react.

At three different food establishments where they have a self-serve soda machine I have had the person next to me slightly fill their cup, take a drink, then fill it with more soda, take a sip again, fill it again, sip- you get the picture.

I don't care about tasting the soda. What I do care about is they're mouth touches the rim of the cup, then touches the soda release lever.

Is it rude to point this out to them? Should I say nothing to them but tell management they need to disinfect the soda dispenser? Maybe hand them a straw? I bit my tongue three times, but I think I reached my limit. Also, I'm not a sanitizer-obsessed freak. This is just really unhygienic.

--Icked Out Alley

If this were a Seinfeld episode, the perpetrator you describe would be called a "double sipper." What should you say or do? Click the title to find out.

Verbiage Warning: Swearing, yes. C-word? Yes.
Running time: 9 m 45 s

I'm thinking, boycott establishments with soda fountain #2.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A simple "thanks" for holding the door

Hey Etiquette Bitch,

I always make a point of holding the door for the person behind me on
entering or leaving a building, as long as they are close behind. If they are too far behind, then holding the door for them may cause them to walk faster, which defeats the purpose of the good mannered behaviour. Almost everyone says "Thank you," and I reply very (maybe too) quietly, "you're welcome."

This happened today at the bank, but the gentleman behind me gave a loud and clear, "Thank you very much sir"- more than the sufficient "thank you" or just, "thanks." He did it again for the second set of doors, only 4 feet behind. I felt a little uncomfortable- his overly polite
thank-you made me feel I had to give him back more than my quiet 'welcome', but I didn't want to overdo it to the degree he had, although I was appreciative of his good manners.

I think we all should be considerate of the person behind, and I get very annoyed if the person in front never even looks and just lets the door close in my face. Is there some sort of rule here, or guideline, on doors and thank yous?


Hey SD:


  1. It's nice to hold the door for the person behind you.
  2. But you don't need to if they are too far behind.
  3. When someone does this for you, say "thanks."

In general, if someone is rightbehindyou and you refuse to hold the door open (or at least give it a good shove for them), this is rude.

As for your bank buddy, he was either: 1) shocked by such graciousness, 2) a little bit touched, 3) genuinely effusive, or, 4) a tad sarcastic. Either way, you did the nice, polite thing, and I'd take his reaction as more of a reflection on him, not you.

And good for you for not raising your voice, either. One never knows how the other party will react in these situations.

Kudos on your good manners.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

I call fake on Miss Manners

So, some modern etiquette questions abound around the possibility of receiving a penis cake.

I call fake. See what you think:


DEAR MISS MANNERS: My husband is putting on a birthday party for me. I will be turning 57.

His sister has taken up the art of hand-sculpting huge birthday cakes. She has been mastering the art of making huge, 3-foot penises. She recently presented one to her mother-in-law for her birthday. Continue reading....