Etiquette, manners, and beyond! In this episode, Nick and Leah tackle eating artichokes, enjoying airport lounges, tucking in chairs, and much more.
Etiquette, manners, and beyond! In this episode, Nick and Leah tackle eating artichokes, enjoying airport lounges, tucking in chairs, and much more. Please follow us! (We'd send you a hand-written thank you note if we could.)
Have a question for us? Call or text (267) CALL-RBW or visit ask.wyrbw.com
THINGS MENTIONED DURING THE SHOW
YOU ARE CORDIALLY INVITED TO...
Hosts: Nick Leighton & Leah Bonnema
Producer & Editor: Nick Leighton
Theme Music: Rob Paravonian
ADVERTISE ON OUR SHOW
Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nick: Do you eat artichokes the wrong way? Do you take your shoes off in airport lounges? Do you not push in your chair? Were you raised by wolves? Let's find out!
Here are things that can make it better
When we have to live together
We can all use a little help
So people don't ask themselves
Were you raised by wolves?
Nick: Hey, everybody. It's Nick Leighton.
Leah: And it's Leah Bonnema.
Nick: And let's just get right down to it with our amuse bouche.
Leah: [singing] Let's get in it.
Nick: So for today's amuse bouche, I want to take you to 1935 New York.
Leah: Oh, wow!
Nick: Can you picture it?
Leah: I can!
Nick: So it was a frigid December morning before dawn, and the police busted into the Bronx terminal market with the mayor, which was Fiorello LaGuardia of airport fame. And LaGuardia stood on the back of a flatbed truck, and he unfurled a large scroll and issued a proclamation about a, quote, "Serious and threatening emergency" happening in New York right then. And the proclamation said that the sale, display and possession of this thing is hereby prohibited. So Leah, what was causing such a serious and threatening emergency in New York that day?
Leah: Oh, wow!
Leah: I feel like I could work this out.
Nick: Okay, well, your clues are—well I mean, I don't know what your clues are. Clues are Bronx terminal market, fruit and vegetable market.
Leah: Vegetable and fruit. Vegetables, 1935.
Nick: 1935. So what was the vibe in New York City then?
Leah: Oh, I really feel like I should know this.
Nick: So what was such a problem was artichokes. And so long story short, there was this huge extortion racket with artichokes, and the federal government and the Secret Service, they were not really paying attention to fruit markets. And so all the local gangsters saw an opportunity to basically extort all of the people trying to bring artichokes into New York City, which were very popular with Italian immigrants at that time. And so there was like a huge market for artichokes. And all the artichokes in the United States came from California.
Nick: So there was like one point of entry for all of the artichokes. And so this one crime family, the Morello crime family, who was led by Ciro Terranova, he was known as "The Artichoke King," because what he did is he basically bought all the artichokes, all of them in New York City. And he prevented any other wholesaler from doing that. And he was a little aggressive in the way he got other wholesalers not to buy artichokes. And so he had all the artichokes, which meant he could sell them for whatever he wanted, which was three times what he paid for them. So, like, huge markup. And this was like a huge monopoly and this was a problem.
Nick: And it was such a problem that gangsters in California were, in the middle of the night with machetes, cutting down artichoke plants to reduce the crop, to increase prices—supply and demand. And so you had, like, the San Mateo Sheriff's Department having to have their own posse of people with, like, sawed-off shotguns going into the fields to try and stop the gangsters from cutting down artichokes. So in the '30s, this was like a huge problem with the artichoke.
Nick: And so Mayor LaGuardia was like, "This ends now." And so he banned artichokes in New York City. And within three days, he rounded up everybody responsible. He broke the extortion racket, and then you could have artichokes again. But, like, isn't that wild?
Leah: That is so wild. That would be a fantastic Godfather movie.
Nick: For sure. So artichokes. So the question today is: how do you eat them? Classic globe artichokes.
Leah: I'm still really enjoying this Italian histoire.
Leah: I—I usually get them already, you know, in a jar.
Nick: Oh, okay. You've never been served, like, here's a artichoke on a plate? We see all the petals?
Leah: With all the petals and the flowers. And then I make it into a lapel flower? No, I haven't.
Nick: Oh. [laughs] Okay. So artichokes, globe artichokes, it is a thing that comes up. It's often an appetizer. And it's served cold, it's served room temperature, it's served hot. Sometimes it's served with butter, sometimes it's served with aioli or, like, some mayonnaise-y thing. And it's often categorized as a "difficult food."
Nick: So it is—it is in that world. So I guess it's a little passive-aggressive, it's a little moody, it's a little hard to get along with. You don't really want them around.
Leah: Which I can appreciate deeply.
Nick: And so the question is: how do you eat them? And so the answer is it is a finger food. It is actually a finger food. And so Miss Manners says quote, "This is the classic case where you must abandon your instincts—if you can even muster any—and admit that etiquette simply has to be learned, not deduced from first principles."
Leah: Abandon instincts?
Nick: Abandon your instincts. Yes. So I think she's saying that, like, your instinct might be to use a fork or a knife on it but, like, no.
Leah: Yeah, she's got that flipped. It's go back to your real instincts.
Nick: [laughs] Right. Miss Manners didn't necessarily have you in mind when she wrote this. That's true.
Leah: [laughs] Or anybody fun.
Nick: But yes, it is technically a finger food to a point. So you start by with your fingers taking off one petal at a time, and then there's gonna be, like, a little pulpy, meaty stuff at the bottom of the leaf, and you scrape that with your teeth silently. Scrape it off with your teeth, and then you set the used leaf off to the side. So that might be on a dedicated plate that is brought for this purpose, or it's just the plate that you have. And you want to sort of do this neatly. So then you're gonna have plucked all the petals off and then you're gonna see the choke, the choke of the artichoke. And this is sort of a hairy, fuzzy thing. And you won't eat that, that's not edible. And so with a knife and a fork, you're gonna cut that off. You're gonna steady it with the fork and you're gonna cut that choke off with your knife, and then you're gonna set the choke off to the side.
Nick: Now Amy Vanderbilt will allow you to use your fingers to steady it as you're using your knife, but what you can't do is try to rip the choke off only with your fingers. That is not allowed. And then below that will be the heart, the artichoke heart. That's the good stuff. And so that is what you're waiting for. And that's the best part. And with a knife and fork, then you will eat that. So you'll, like, cut off manageable bites with that and then you'll eat that with a knife and fork like you eat other foods.
Leah: It's very exciting. I'm gonna give it a try because I'm getting my—my artichokes, you know, oiled up in jars. I want to do the labor on this.
Nick: Do the labor because, A) who doesn't love a finger food?
Leah: I love a finger food.
Nick: And also artichokes are delicious. And also, I think people are intimidated by the artichoke because you're like, "Oh, what do I do with this thing? Do I want to eat it in public with other people?" But I think if you just know how to eat it—which hopefully I've outlined—then, like, you will go forth with confidence.
Leah: You have outlined it beautifully.
Nick: [laughs] Thank you very much. So enjoy your artichokes!
Nick: And we're back. And now it's time to go deep.
Leah: Deep and somewhere I honestly have never been.
Nick: Okay. So for today's question of etiquette, I want to talk about airport lounges.
Leah: I've seen—I've walked by them at the airport.
Nick: You've never been in one?
Nick: Okay. Well, I think I want you to be prepared when we go to an airport lounge.
Leah: Which I may do because it comes with my credit card.
Nick: Yes. I mean, there's a lot of different ways to get into a lounge. And so the first thing on my list is actually: know what lounges you can get into and know the rules. Because I have been at many lounges, and you see the person at the desk yelling at the people who work there about whether or not they can get in and they're being told no. And, like, no—no one wants that. And so just like, know. Do you have the ticket for this? Do you have the credit card for this lounge? Like, just know what the rules are before you go so we can avoid any fights. Because if you're not eligible, you're not gonna—you can't talk your way in. Like, that's not an option.
Leah: And also, let's not yell at people.
Nick: Also, let's not yell at people.
Leah: I assume that those people yelling were not anybody from our Were You Raised By Wolves? family.
Nick: Oh, definitely not. Oh, definitely not.
Nick: I would like to think our listeners won't ever do something that would get them trending on social media.
Nick: Like, I would like to think that none of our listeners will ever be videotaped in public doing something they shouldn't be doing. I think that's the bar that I want to set, and hopefully we will achieve this.
Leah: [laughs] That's the goal of this show.
Nick: That's the goal. Don't become a hashtag.
Leah: That's the goal of the show!
Nick: That's the goal of the show! So the broad theme, once you get into the lounge, is that you should treat it like an open plan office. I think that's kind of the vibe, kind of a professional atmosphere. So, like, if you wouldn't do it at the office, I don't think we want to be doing it in the lounge. So, like, let's not, like, put our feet on the furniture.
Leah: But could we take our shoes off if we kept our feet under our chair because we need to—like the movie Die Hard—make fists with our toes when we're not flying?
Nick: Um, I mean, I personally would rather everybody's shoes stay on in a lounge.
Leah: I'm just asking. I've never been in there.
Nick: Yeah. I mean, I would prefer that. I definitely don't want your feet on the furniture.
Leah: Well, no. I see that.
Nick: I think use context clues, whether or not that feels okay where you are at that moment. I do feel like shoes off? Okay, maybe. Socks need to stay on. I don't think we remove our socks. All right?
Leah: Oh, no.
Nick: We can make that deal?
Leah: And obviously you would have lovely socks on.
Leah: Not socks with holes that ...
Nick: I guess.
Leah: ... you're showing everybody your big toe. You're not—you know, lovely socks.
Nick: I mean, don't even need them to be lovely. I guess I just don't want to see your feet through the socks. How's that?
Nick: Okay. Compromise. I also think, like, the office vibe, I think we want to keep our voices low. I think we want to be mindful of, like, the things that make noise. So, like, you on a phone call or, like, you watching a movie on your laptop. So sort of like, let's keep it down or use headphones.
Leah: Use headphones.
Nick: Yeah. I mean, headphones are sort of mandatory if you're, like, watching a movie.
Leah: I haven't been in one of these places, but let me tell you I'm hoping there's headphones.
Nick: I mean, everybody should have headphones. Yeah, I think that's like a standard thing people should travel with. Like, you should always just have your own headphones.
Leah: I would like to think we could take a little baby nap in one of the chairs.
Nick: Yes. Unlike an office, I think you're allowed to nap. Yeah, that's true.
Leah: I feel like I've walked by and thought, "Ooh, I could get a snack and a nap."
Nick: Yeah, you could definitely get these things. Yeah. Another thing on my list is, like, I think we want to share. So, like, we want to share power outlets if that's required. You know, sometimes there's not enough outlets for everybody. So, like, sharing is caring. And I think we want to clean up after ourselves. Like, let's not be animals. Let's, like, clean up after ourselves.
Leah: What's the snack situation in there?
Nick: Depends on the lounge. Definitely depends on the lounge. Sometimes it's, like, great. Like, you sit down and they're actually gonna bring you food based on a menu.
Nick: Sometimes it's gonna be—yeah. Yeah, this happens. Sometimes it's, like, gonna be some weird sandwiches and you're like, "I don't know if those are safe." And maybe some warm sodas and fluorescent lighting. And so that could be the lounge. Yeah, there's a very wide range of lounge experiences available to you, for sure. Lounges also often have showers. And so if there is a shower, I think you want to just, like, be mindful of how much time you're taking and don't go over the allotment. And then lastly, I don't know if this is etiquette, but don't strut around.
Nick: Because there is a temptation among some people I have seen when you are flying in a certain class or you have access to a lounge where you feel really good about that. And that's great. I don't want to take that away from you, but sometimes your behavior affects other people when you're, like, being a little too pleased with yourself that you're in first class or business class. And so sort of like just, like, know where that line is, and try not to let that affect other people around you.
Nick: Yeah. I think you know it when you see it and you're like, okay. [laughs]
Leah: No peacocking.
Nick: No peacocking. Yeah. And I think we just want to check ourselves. It's like, yes, I'm delighted that I'm gonna be in the front of the plane or I'm delighted that my credit card allows me to have access to these snacks for the next 90 minutes, but that doesn't make you better than everybody else in the lounge or airport. And so let's just kind of keep that in mind.
Leah: I visualize—previous episode we talked about throwing flags down for people.
Leah: This would be a peacocking flag when you see it.
Leah: Maybe this is more of like a thing you hand to somebody. A peacocking.
Nick: Peacocking. Let's just take it down a notch. Related to this, I think if you're an Instagram influencer and you feel like you need to do a photoshoot in the lounge, just do it in a way that doesn't, like, affect other people. I've definitely seen some very elaborate photoshoots happening in, like, the Delta Sky Lounge at Kennedy. And it's sort of like, I don't know what this is, but, like, you're actually blocking the coffee maker.
Nick: So can I just, like—can I just get an Americano real quick and then, like, you can go back to whatever it is you're doing? Like, thank you. [laughs]
Leah: Oh, man!
Nick: Yeah. So I mention it because, like, I've seen it happen and it's sort of like, oh, come on.
Leah: Sometimes don't you just wish the internet would crash?
Nick: Oh, yes.
Nick: Oh, yes. Oh, many times. Yeah. I mean, fingers crossed. So we need to get you in a lounge. I think we need to go somewhere together, Leah.
Leah: Well, I've been pushing for us going somewhere together, and you have been—let's be honest—emotionally dragging your feet and slightly terrorized by the idea.
Nick: [laughs] Yeah, but I think we all need to overcome our fears. And so I'm willing to do so. And so where do we want to go, Leah? Where are we going?
Nick: Okay. I've not actually been to Finland.
Leah: When I walk into the lounge, I'm gonna say to the person working at the front, "This is my first time in a lounge." Just so they know how excited I am. And then I'm gonna take three selfies with you in the back shaking your head upset.
Nick: Great. Can't wait!
Nick: And we're back. And now it's time to take some questions from you all in the wilderness.
Nick: So our first question is quote, "Have you heard of a wedding gift opening party? What is this? Who's invited to it? Who hosts and when is it held?"
Leah: I hadn't, but I have Google.
Nick: So I was not super aware of this, and so I have also Googled it. And so I have thoughts.
Leah: I feel like even Google was like, "You may have not heard of this."
Nick: Yeah, most of Google was like, "This is a thing that only takes place in certain places."
Leah: So the three of us were all on the same page.
Nick: Exactly. So what this is is basically a thing that takes place typically the day after the wedding, so like the Sunday after, where you get together with all of your family and friends and you open all of your wedding gifts together. Sort of like a bridal shower, but it's just like your wedding gifts and the day after the wedding.
Leah: And it seems sort of brunch time-y from my Google results.
Nick: Yes. It feels like instead of, like, the day after brunch, which is fairly common, this is now the brunch plus. Sort of an enhanced brunch. And in terms of, like, who's invited, I guess it's just close family and friends.
Leah: But I wouldn't, like, put it out there so people felt like they weren't getting invited. "Hey, are you going to the after opening party?" "No, I'm not invited."
Nick: No, that's true. I guess what's a little tricky or confusing to me is that very often after the wedding, there's gonna be, like, the day after brunch-y thing, which is often for people coming in from out of town. It's sort of like a send off. And so I like those because they're, like, casual and it's often like a drop in. Like, "Oh, I'm gonna get a cup of coffee and a pastry and say goodbye to everybody and then, like, go back to the airport" kind of idea. And I think if you have this opening party, then that becomes like the whole thing. And now it's a much bigger event and I can't, like, just drop in. Or you're not gonna invite everybody to it, and so then, yeah, you are gonna exclude people from it. And then it's like, oh, I don't love that.
Leah: Yeah, I do like that morning after breakfast.
Nick: And it's very nice because it's, like, cazh, which is, like, nice.
Leah: Casual. You come in, you show up. "Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey. Congratulations again. This was wonderful."
Nick: Yeah, grab a scone and then get in your rental car. And another thing that sort of catches my eye about this is that we are now opening all the wedding presents. Okay. But that means we have saved all the wedding presents we've received until this party. And a lot of times people send gifts way before the wedding. You know, six months before the wedding, three months. And so does that mean that all of these people have not received a thank-you note yet? I think that's what that means.
Leah: Well on top of that ...
Leah: ... a lot of weddings I've been to are not where the people getting married live. I've sent their wedding present to their home so they don't have to carry it back to them from wherever we are.
Nick: Right. I mean, I guess this must take place in places where your home is sort of near where the wedding took place.
Leah: Yeah, I think it's—it's a very specific circumstance. It's like, if you live where you are, it's a smaller group of people who aren't traveling back the next day.
Nick: And I guess it's the same guest list as, like, the rehearsal dinner, I guess maybe that's, like, the same guest list.
Leah: Yeah, that seems right.
Nick: And then who hosts this thing? So it seems like the bride and groom are actually the hosts. It kind of feels like they're the hosts. Or I guess it's a close family member.
Leah: And this doesn't seem like it's so widespread that it's something that's expected of you. I feel like this is something that you really are into.
Nick: Yes. Or perhaps it is expected in certain places. But yeah, this is definitely not, like, the standard in the United States.
Leah: I don't know why I'm worried about all the people who feel like they weren't invited. I would say close friends, people from the rehearsal dinner, but if somebody else was talking about it in front of somebody else, I would say, "Oh, hey, you're obviously welcome to come."
Nick: And then I guess a lot of times you get cash as gifts or checks. And I guess I don't think I want you opening envelopes of cash in front of me at a party, right? Like, I guess I'm okay with KitchenAid mixer, but, like, wad of cash from Uncle Tony? I don't want you to, like, counting the bills.
Leah: I don't know. Have you seen Goodfellas? You say thank you. You put it in a bag.
Nick: Okay. All right. Maybe that's what it is. Yeah.
Leah: Side note: I love that movie, but that's the scene where I stop watching it.
Nick: [laughs] Okay.
Leah: I like to watch up until the wedding, and then I bounce because ...
Nick: And then you don't know what happens.
Leah: I know what happens. And I like to believe that if I stop watching it there, that's where it ends.
Nick: I see. So did we answer the question for the letter-writer?
Leah: I feel like my answer is that it seems like it's appropriate to do what you want to do.
Nick: Yeah. Yeah, I don't think it's bad etiquette to do this party, but it's not required. And so I guess do it if you want to do it or not if you don't want to do it.
Leah: If you want to have a gift-opening party it's—according to the internet web searches—it is the next day. It's sort of at a brunch-y time, and it's the people that would be at the rehearsal dinner.
Nick: Yeah. So there you go. So our next question is quote, "My wife and I recently went to our favorite local restaurant and went to the bar for drinks and dinner. There are eight seats at the bar and one couple was seated at one end, but another couple was seated at the other end with one open seat between them and the end of the bar, leaving an uneven set of three seats in the middle. The bar at this restaurant usually fills up, so I wanted to tell the other couple to move down so we could make space in case another couple came. My wife told me to let it go, and fortunately the one seat beside us was taken by a single person. How should I have handled this situation? Is it standard etiquette when sitting at a bar for dinner to not leave a buffer seat between you and the next person? Or just leave it to chance, and if another couple came, have them rearrange the seating?"
Leah: I think if there is a buffer seat to be taken, take it. But if there's not a buffer seat to be taken, I wouldn't take it upon myself to rearrange the people sitting at the bar.
Nick: Right. And just so we're all on the same page, this is what I'm picturing: we have person, person, seat, seat, seat, person, person, seat. Right?
Nick: So we have a couple, three empty seats, a couple, and then there's an empty seat at the end.
Nick: Okay. So yeah, I mean, I think you can always request someone shifts down when the need arises, but I think the problem here is that we're anticipating something that has not happened yet.
Leah: On the nose. There's only two of you and there's three seats open, and I don't think it would be appropriate to say, "Hey, can you shift down in case two other people come in the future?" Also, we don't know what just happened. There could have been a person sitting there. They just left.
Nick: And not everybody goes to a bar in pairs. Like, some people just want one seat.
Leah: Well, as shown by a single person came and took the seat in between them, there may be another single person who took the seat at the end. We don't know what's gonna happen.
Nick: Yeah. So I think in general it is nice to, like, move down if necessary at a bar to make room, but I don't think we have to anticipate the potentiality of it all.
Leah: And I think if there's a buffer seat to take, we take it. If there isn't, then it doesn't matter. We just—I think people sitting at a bar know that a part of sitting at the bar is that you're gonna be close to people.
Nick: Yeah. I think that's it.
Leah: So I think we—we solved it. We wouldn't tell the person to move down in anticipating other people coming. We would just seat ourselves, and then if something came up later, we would deal with it then.
Nick: And actually, we would probably leave it to the people walking up to the bar needing the seats to have the conversation with the people about shifting around. Be like, "Hey, there's gonna be actually three of us. Do you mind shifting down a seat?" And, like, that's a conversation for them all to have. As just fellow diners at the other end of the bar, I don't think you need to get involved even then.
Leah: Yeah, I wouldn't get involved.
Nick: So do you have questions for us about anything? Let us know! You can let us know through our website, WereYouRaisedByWolves.com, or you can leave us a voicemail or send us a text message: (267) CALL-RBW.
Nick: And we're back. And now it's time to play a game we like to call, Vent or Repent.
Leah: [whispers] Vent or repent!
Nick: Which is our opportunity to vent about some bad etiquette experience we've had recently, or we can repent for some etiquette faux pas we've committed. So Leah, would you like to vent or repent?
Leah: I'm gonna vent. And, you know, I've been trying to let this go.
Leah: Because I didn't want to vent about it.
Nick: Okay. But you couldn't make that happen.
Leah: But I mean, it just comes up when I'm driving, it pops into my head and I get angry. So I was like, "I gotta—I gotta put it somewhere."
Nick: All right. Put it here. What have you got?
Leah: So it's possible I've discussed it with you.
Leah: But for our lovely listeners, here's what happened: there was a surprise birthday party.
Leah: People were talking about it around me, and I was like, oh, that's hurtful. In my inside voice, I thought, oh, that's hurtful I'm not invited, and people are talking about it around me. But then it kept happening and I thought, maybe I've been invited and I didn't know it. So I have already searched my inbox. Maybe I missed an invite. Then I was like, I really didn't. Then one of these people who've been talking about it around me called and said, "Hey, you haven't responded to the invite to this party."
Leah: And I felt so nice inside. I was like, "Oh, I have been invited," you know?
Leah: So then I said, "Oh, I never got it." And she said, "Oh, okay." So then she put me on an email with the people hosting the surprise party. So the person who it's for is not on this email, it's the people hosting.
Nick: Right. As they shouldn't be if it's a surprise party.
Leah: As they shouldn't be.
Nick: So a friend is like, "Oh, you weren't invited. Let me make sure you get the invite again. I'm gonna send a note to the host including you on the email and being, like, "Oh, Leah needs to get the invite."
Leah: And I'm on the email. I'm right there. I'm in the conversation. The woman who apparently is running this shindig replies all and writes about me even though I'm on the thing, "She did get the email. I can see from my end that not only did she get it, but it's been opened."
Nick: Oh! That's a little reckless.
Leah: So I don't respond to say, "Hey, I've already checked my spam, my junk, my trash," because I was so—and then I even went to a place where I was like, is somebody else on my email? I'm absolutely sure I didn't get it.
Leah: But I don't—I'm not gonna engage, because this is not about me or her, it's about this other person who's having a surprise party.
Leah: So I call my friend and I say, "Hey, I'm gonna take myself off that email. I don't need to be—" I said to her—because I'm extremely aware of other people. I feel like I try so hard not to be—I know if I got an email or not. I'm not the one.
Nick: Right. No, it's a little—yeah. [laughs]
Leah: It was like, I don't know why you could have just said to me, I'm on the email, "Hey, so sorry, but it looks like on my end, you got it. Maybe—" and then just asked.
Nick: Well, because the way it was phrased was like, "Oh, no. You're a liar."
Leah: "You're a liar."
Nick: You're a lying liar.
Leah: Which I won't even lie about, like, liking—you know what I mean?
Leah: You know me.
Nick: Well, and here's the thing about, like, the open email notifications. There's a lot of things that can trigger that. Like, a spam filter can "open an email," quote-unquote, and that can actually trigger that. Which is like, oh, it looks like it was opened. But it wasn't you, it was like the spam filter, like, double checking it. And so it was like, you don't necessarily actually have to open an email for it to trigger that. Those aren't, like, 100 percent reliable.
Leah: Which I also wanted to reply all and be like, "Here's the things that it could have been on your end." But I was like, I'm not doing this. I'm rising above. So then I just take myself off the email. I tell my friend again, "Hey, I never got it. If you just want to text me what the info is, I don't—this doesn't need to be a big deal."
Leah: Then the original person who wrote to me as if I wasn't on the email resends the email, but then writes at the top of it "So this gets brought back to the top of your inbox."
Leah: Doubling down! Like, just let it go. A) I didn't get it. I'm 100 percent sure.
Nick: I don't know. Are you lying?
Leah: I would put money on it. I would put—you know how I feel about lying. I've gone out of my way to be an honest person even if it works against me. And then now you're gonna double down and say up at the top of your inbox? I don't know this woman, but I'm going to make eye contact with her this weekend. And I don't know how I'm not going to say something because she's accused me of lying!
Nick: I mean, you opened it, Leah. I saw that you did.
Leah: I cannot!
Nick: Yeah, that's pretty aggressive.
Leah: It's so aggressive. Just let it go!
Nick: Yeah. I mean, it's so aggressive for something that's so low stakes, and so it's sort of like the proportionality is a little off.
Leah: Even if I thought you opened it and I was like, "Oh, you probably missed it," you know what I mean? I would just be like, "Okay, I'll resend it."
Nick: Yeah, it really needs to be that.
Leah: What's the big deal?
Nick: Non-judgmental, value neutral, "Okay, here's the link again." Yeah.
Leah: Also, you don't know what's going on in my life, you know what I mean? What if I'm in a—I'm having the worst week of my life, and you can't just re-forward something. Like, I'm really—it's really bothered me.
Nick: Yeah. No, I can see that. I mean, I'm sorry that something like this, which is, I mean, a little trivial, has gotten you ...
Leah: I think it bothers me because it's—I don't ever ask anything of anybody. Literally. And the first time I asked somebody to reforward an email, it's a problem.
Nick: [laughs] Well, I'm sorry this happened to you.
Leah: And I know it's so low stakes. Let me just say one more—I know it's very low stakes, but that's—it's just—huge things have not bothered me as much as this. I just don't understand why she had to be so trivial.
Nick: Yeah. All right. Well, I will see your low stakes and I will lower them even lower with my vent today, which I actually think is even more trivial than yours. It is about people who don't tuck in their chairs when they stand up and leave a table.
Nick: I've just—I've noticed this like 20 times over the past week, and it's sort of like, what is happening? Am I just noticing it more, or are we actually experiencing an epidemic of not pushing in our chairs? Like, is this something in the air right now? So I was in a restaurant last night, and the person at the table next to me got up from the table, and as you do, you slide back with your chair when you stand up. And most people would put the chair back, you slide it back under the table. But this person didn't do that, and now you have a chair in the middle of a New York City restaurant—which is a tight space—and the room that we have available to walk around is about a chair width. And so this person just left their chair in the middle of the restaurant and just, like, walked off to the bathroom. And it's sort of like, do you think someone else is gonna, like, tuck this in for you? This is not that kind of restaurant. Like, it's not a fancy restaurant. It's a casual cafe kind of vibe. And so, like, you are responsible for your own chair tucking.
Nick: And so it was just like in the middle. And it's like, people actually couldn't get around it. And, like. somebody else trying to go to the bathroom actually, like, tucked it in, like you do. And it's sort of like, okay. But, like, that's rude.
Leah: Yeah, I 100 percent agree. I—I can't even—I see an untucked chair, I tuck it. It's—it seems visually off putting, you know what I mean? It goes under the table.
Nick: It's very weird! I mean, it's sort of like driving into a parking lot, and instead of, like, picking a parking space, I'm gonna, like, stop and I'm gonna, like, open up my car doors and I'm not even gonna close my car doors and then I'm gonna go into the store. And it's sort of like, no, we gotta—there's a little more involved here. We gotta, like, contain ourselves in one spot.
Leah: I 100 percent agree with this.
Leah: You know, this goes into the list that we've been talking about with our Patreon, which is, "Why can't you just?" You know what I mean? These are such simple things.
Nick: Yeah. Would it kill you if?
Leah: Push in the chair. Just push in the chair!
Nick: How hard is this?
Nick: Right. So I think this gets added to the list of, like, "Could you please?"
Leah: With almost no effort involved.
Nick: Like, basically zero effort. Right. So that's my vent today. Very low stakes. But I just want everybody to be a little more mindful over the next week—or for the rest of your life—to just tuck in your chairs. That's it. Just do it.
Leah: I even tuck in my chairs at home.
Nick: Yes. Because, like. Are you feral? No! Tuck in your chairs, people.
Leah: I'm almost feral and I'm still tucking in my chairs.
Nick: So if Leah Bonnema can do it, everybody can do it.
Nick: So Leah, what have we learned?
Leah: I learned this incredible gang warfare history over artichokes.
Nick: Right? Isn't that fun?
Leah: It's so fun! And then I learned how to eat them properly.
Nick: And I learned that you have never been to an airport lounge.
Leah: Never. And I can't wait!
Nick: I'm gonna take you, Leah.
Leah: And we're gonna have snacks.
Nick: We will definitely have snacks. I promise it.
Leah: And if Nick Leighton promises, it's going to happen.
Nick: Well, thank you, Leah.
Leah: Thank you, Nick.
Nick: And thanks to you out there for listening. I'd send you a handwritten note of my custom stationery if I could.
Leah: He would!
Nick: So for your homework this week, we want you to send us your questions, send us your vents, send us your repents.
Leah: You could even send us your aftermaths.
Nick: And we'll take it via email, text, DM. Just send it to us.
Leah: We would so love to hear it.
Nick: We would. And we'll see you next time!
Nick: All right, Leah. It's time for Cordials of Kindness, the part of the show that you make us do, but I only give you 30 seconds to do it. Ready, set, go!
Leah: So you know that I'm trying to visit as much of California and all of its extraordinary gifts it has to offer.
Leah: And this week, a friend took me to a hot spring.
Leah: So I just wanted to say thank you so much to Nina. That was so wonderful and fun and restorative.
Nick: Ooh, very nice. And for me, we just got a great voicemail and it's quote, "I was recently hosting my in-laws and my husband's extended family, and that's always tough because we have very different expectations and etiquette. But I've been married for 25 years, and I know the deal. So when all the guests arrived, I was finishing some things upstairs, and my daughter came up to get me and she said, "You need to come downstairs, everyone's here." And I was doing some eye rolling and just putting it off, and she looked at me and she said, "Mom, remember what Nick said? Remember your training." And it was just really funny, and it snapped me totally out of it and it was so true. So I just wanted to call and I wanted to say thank you so much. I really appreciate it."
Leah: Oh, that's so fun!
Nick: Isn't that fun? Yes. So I'm glad somebody remembered their training, and was able to endure a day with their in-laws and extended family. So thanks. This really made my day.
Leah: That's a real fun one.
You can start with our first episode, our most recent episode, or jump in with one of these favorites in the middle:
Etiquette, manners, and beyond! In this very special 100th episode extravaganza, Nick and Leah revisit their favorite moments from the series and much more. Please follow us! (We'd send you a hand-written thank you note if we had your address.)
Etiquette, manners, and beyond! In this bonus episode, Nick and Leah answer listener questions about adding ice cubes to wine, wiping down equipment at the gym, shouting at employees in supermarkets, and much more. Please follow us! (We'd send you …
Etiquette, manners, and beyond! In this episode, Nick and Leah tackle answering phones, cutting lines, telling restaurants it's your birthday, selling items online, responding to rude customer service, and much more. Please subscribe! (We'd write you a hand-written thank you …
Etiquette, manners, and beyond! In this episode, Nick and Leah tackle eating corn on the cob, asking people how old they are, handling people who never RSVP, and much more. Please subscribe! (We'd write you a hand-written thank you note …
Etiquette, manners, and beyond! In this episode, Nick and Leah tackle using towels at a Japanese restaurant, ghosting, dressing appropriately for Renaissance fairs, speaking to flight attendants while wearing headphones, correcting people who get your name wrong, asking about a …
Etiquette, manners, and beyond! In this bonus episode, Nick and Leah answer listener questions about eating Cheetos, calling dibs, handling supermarket line cutters and slow baggers, behaving at a funeral, shutting down resentful relatives, going barefoot in a no-shoe household, …