Sept. 7, 2020

Wearing White After Labor Day, Apologizing Correctly, Sending Glitter, and More

Etiquette, manners, and beyond! In this episode, Nick and Leah tackle wearing white after labor day, apologizing the right way, sending things with glitter, and much more. Please subscribe! (We'd write you a hand-written thank you note if we could.)


  • AMUSE-BOUCHE: Wearing white after Labor Day
  • QUESTIONS FROM THE WILDERNESS: How do you tell someone not to answer their door in their underwear? Can you confront a friend who smudges glassware? Is it rude to ask for your pan back?
  • VENT OR REPENT: Mask-wearing in stores, Sending things with glitter
  • CORDIALS OF KINDNESS: To parents, to listeners




Hosts: Nick Leighton & Leah Bonnema

Producer & Editor: Nick Leighton

Theme Music: Rob Paravonian


[Musical Interlude]

Nick: Do you send cards with glitter? Do you not know how to apologize? Do you answer the door in your underwear? Were you raised by wolves?! Let's find out!

[Theme Song]

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 I'm Leah Bonnema.

Nick: Let's just get right down to it!

Leah: Let's get in it!

Nick: For today's amuse-bouche: Leah, is it okay to wear white after Labor Day?

Leah: [Laughing]

Nick: [Giggling]

Leah: You know, my favorite shoes to perform in are my white whites.

Nick: Okay.

Leah: They're my white-white sneakers. I keep them in a box.

Nick: Okay.

Leah: That's why I call them my white whites. I will wear them at any time of year that I want to.

Nick: So, I was watching Serial Mom, which is a John Waters movie from the '90s, and there is a great scene- [Spoiler alert, if you haven't seen it, but you've had 20 years] Kathleen Turner murders Patty Hearst for wearing white shoes.

Leah: [Laughing]

Nick: It's a great scene. Really recommend it. I'm going to link to it on our show notes. So, is this a rule? Where does this come from? Is this really an etiquette faux pas?

Leah: I mean, I hear it all the time. "Don't wear white after Labor Day."

Nick: Yeah, no, it's a thing out there. I was looking into where does this come from? The general idea is that Labor Day is the unofficial end of summer. We kind of all agree on this. It's sort of the line between summer and autumn. Okay, fine ... There is the idea that white is a cooler color. It reflects sunlight. It keeps you cooler. So, that, practically, makes sense. We wear white and lighter colors in the summer, so there's that.

Now, where this might come from is in the beginning part of the 20th century, where it started to become fashionable to escape the big cities. This is when you get places like the Hamptons sort of becoming a thing, where, if you had money and could get out of New York City in 1910, you did. You went off to your little vacation house, wherever it may be, and you were wearing white, partly because you probably could. White is not a practical fabric. If you're a coal miner, white is not a good idea, but if you live a life of leisure, where you're basically sipping lemonade by the pool, you can wear white.

Leah: It's not even a good idea of you ride the subway. You don't even have to be [crosstalk]

Nick: Probably not. Yeah ... People ask, "Oh, why do New Yorkers wear black all the time?" Because the city is dirty.

Leah: Yeah. [Laughing]

Nick: We don't want you to see the thin film of dirt that covers all of us. That's why.

Leah: Yeah, it just sticks to our person all the time!

Nick: There is the idea that white was associated with people who are living a life of leisure during the summertime. Okay, that makes sense. Then, the century moved along and, particularly as the middle class was expanding after World War II, there was this idea that learning the rules would be your ticket into polite society. If the rule was that wealthy people wore white, but only in the summer, if I know that rule, well, then, maybe I can sort of move up the social ladder.

Said another way, the director of the museum at FIT, which is the Fashion Institute of Technology here in New York, she did an interview, I think, with Time Magazine, and she was saying that, basically, this white-pant rule was about insiders trying to keep other people out and outsiders trying to climb their way in by proving they knew the rules. So, it was sort of this arbitrary thing that some segment of society invented to create some sort of artificial distinction. That is a theory.

Leah: Well, now I'm glad I wear my white-whites all year round because I don't want to climb my way in.

Nick: However, Miss Manners, not to be outdone, she has been asked where this rule comes from, and she says, "There are always people who want to attribute everything in etiquette to snobbery. There were many little rules that people did dream up in order to annoy those from whom they wished to disassociate themselves, but I do not believe this is one of them." She doesn't buy this whole snobbery thing. Interesting. But, in the end, can you wear white? Yeah, go for it.

Leah: Go for it! Especially if they're your fanciest sneakers, and you want to wear them to a show to be like, "Look at my fancy white sneakers," or Christmas! What a time to wear white! White and red? [Gasping]

Nick: Well, yeah, now we get into winter whites, oh sure!

Leah: Winter whites! Oh, my goodness.

Nick: Sure. Yeah. I think, at the end of the day, it's really about fabric choice and not color. If you want to wear linen in December, that's maybe not the right fabric, but it could be white wool.

Leah: Or maybe you're just a writer ... You're a writer, and you wear linen because you're a fan of Hemingway, and you want to ... You know what I mean? I picture him wearing white linen all the time.

Nick: Okay, I mean, Hemingway was in Havana, where it's a little warm, but, okay, fine [Laughing]

Leah: You know ... Maybe you're trying to recreate that in your cold apartment!

Nick: Okay, get that mojito. Sure.

Leah: I have a lot of rules that I follow very strictly. Clothing - not one of them.

Nick: Yeah, we've seen your wind suits.

Leah: [Laughing]

Nick: We get it.

[Musical Interlude]

Nick: We're back, and now it's time to go deep.

Leah: What a deep, deep, deep, deep, great deep dive this is!

Nick: I want to talk about apologizing.

Leah: Whooo!

Nick: There's a lot to say. There's a lot to say about apologizing.

Leah: This is a great one.

Nick: So, got a great quote from Miss Manners: "Now that the duel is illegal, the apology is the only way left to settle many disputes without getting blood on the sofa."

Leah: [Laughing] Oh, my goodness, that's fantastic!

Nick: So, there you have it. I guess let's start with what is an apology. What is the essence of an apology?

Leah: I think it's recognizing your actions were either hurtful, or you made a mistake and trying to make amends with somebody.

Nick: Yes. I mean, I think, at its core, it needs to be an expression of regret or remorse. I think that's the pith of it. I think it's hard for some people to apologize - and I am in this category; I will be the first to raise my hand - because it requires you to admit you've done something wrong. I personally do not like to admit I've done something wrong. I don't like that. It's not my favorite thing. Apologizing requires you to do that, and that is not thrilling for most people.

Leah: Yeah, I ... There's two kinds of apologies. There's the kind of apology where, you know, you're out in public, and you bump somebody, or they bump you-

Nick: Sure.

Leah: You apologize ... "I'm sorry." You know what I mean? Then, there's closer friends or business associates, where you made an error, and you own up to it.

Nick: Yeah, I mean, I guess for the smaller social transgressions - the bump ... I don't think this is the type of apologizing we're talking about.

Leah: No, but I throw those out all the time because I'd rather just keep it polite, but when I owe somebody a real apology-

Nick: Sure.

Leah: -it's very different to me. I take it very seriously. I don't apologize, when I don't mean it, to just make somebody feel better, because I want people to know that when I apologize, I really mean it.

Nick: Yes, being sincere, I think, is the key thing for apologizing, if you're wanting to actually apologize. If you've decided, "I need to apologize for this thing," you need to be sincere about it. Otherwise, it doesn't count.

Leah: Yeah. I can definitely remember some apologies that I've given ... Let me just say that [Giggling]

Nick: I guess let's talk about good versus bad apologies. I was reading Psychology Today, which I often reference. They had a great article which I'll link to in the show notes, which gives you key elements for an apology. They actually had nine. We won't go through all nine, don't worry. The key elements are to not make excuses. Your apology should not include the word, "but," like, "I'm sorry, but ..." Yeah. No, no, no. You can give an explanation, but excuses? Hmm.

Leah: Yeah, I fully agree with that, especially when you hear an apology. As soon as someone says, "But," it feels they're trying to take the onus off themselves. It's an interesting line to walk, where you try to explain why you did it and then how you realized you were wrong and not make it a "But."

Nick: Right. I mean, the key of the apology is you take responsibility.

Leah: Yeah. You're owning up to it.

Nick: When you use the word, "But," you are not taking full responsibility. That's why that's the problem. The next thing for a good apology is you want to make the focus of the apology on your actions, not on the other person's response, which is why the classic, "I'm sorry you felt offended," is a bad apology.

Leah: That's not even an apology. That's not an apology.

Nick: It's not even an apology. That's also just like Crisis Management 101. That's not an apology, people - corporations of the world ... People get called out on Twitter saying that you're sorry [crosstalk]

Leah: "I'm sorry you were offended ..." That's not an apology at all!

Nick: Nope! But why it's not an apology is that the focus is not on your actions. The focus of your apology should be on your actions and what you did. It is also kind of key to not involve who started it. I think the apology, if it cannot involve blame, that would be very helpful to a successful apology.

Leah: I think that's a great point.

Nick: Then, when you're apologizing, you take responsibility for whatever it is that you did, but then, you also now need to say what you're going to do to try and make things right, whatever that is. What actions can you take? What can you do to try and correct the situation? So, it's good to apologize for the thing you did, but then, the other half of it needs to be, "Okay, what do we do from here? How do we move forward?"

Leah: I think, sometimes, that's just, "I won't do that again."

Nick: Yeah, I mean, sometimes that's enough. Like, "Oh, I understand now that what I did was hurtful or crossed a boundary or was disrespectful or inconveniencing you ..." or whatever it was, "so, I will be more conscious to not repeat that."

Leah: Yeah. I think, a lot of times, it's just a realization that you hadn't been aware of. You recognize it, you apologize for it, and then you say, "I won't do that again."

Nick: Right.

Leah: I think that's enough.

Nick: Yeah. Then, I guess, realize that, sometimes, an apology is not enough ... Sometimes-

Leah: Yeah, no, I didn't mean it's enough in every situation. In some situations, that you recognizing and changing your behavior will be, and obviously, in other situations, that will not be enough at all.

Nick: Now, what do you do if someone won't apologize to you? An etiquette crime has been committed against you, and you are owed an apology, but one is not forthcoming?

Leah: You can't make a person apologize.

Nick: That's true. That is definitely true.

Leah: But you can write them off. [Laughing]

Nick: [Giggling] Yeah, true. Well, I often think about relationships in terms of seats in a theater. Have I used this analogy before? I think of my relationships as people are in different seats. Some people are on stage with me. Of course, I'm in the middle of the stage. I'm on stage here, in this analogy. Some people are on stage with me; some people are in the front row; some people are a little further back in the balcony.
Throughout our lives, our seating changes for our relationships. Somebody who does something bad, well, maybe they get reseated. Maybe they were in the orchestra; we're going to move them to the balcony. If they were already in the balcony, might put them in the lobby. If they were already in the lobby, well, then they're going outside. I think you are always free to reseat the people in your lives based on how things go. If you're owed an apology, and you don't get one, well, then, I think we look at the seating chart.

Leah: I recently had a situation with a friend. I was assuming they knew that you expected an apology, like that something had happened, and everybody was aware of it. I recently had a situation where I was very hurt by something-

Nick: Mm-hmm.

Leah: -I wanted to give this person a chance to explain it because maybe I was missing something. You know most of my conversations are with text. I understand a lot of people talk in person. I'm just not a phone person. I texted, "Hey, blankety-blank-blank, I feel weird about this. This is what it looks from my point of view."

Nick: Okay.

Leah: That way we just had a conversation about it.

Nick: Yeah, I think that's good.

Leah: In case I was seeing it wrong ... I knew I was going to harbor feeling upset, and I didn't want to harbor feeling upset. I wanted to talk about it and say that I was upset and give them an opportunity to explain their point of view. That way we could clear the air.

Nick: Yeah, I'm thinking about people who know that they've done something wrong and are choosing not to apologize.

Leah: I, in this situation, didn't understand how this person didn't understand that they did something wrong.

Nick: Yeah.

Leah: So, I wanted to give them the opportunity because maybe I was seeing it wrong.

Nick: Fair enough. Okay.

Leah: In a situation where somebody is not apologizing, it's possible that I'm missing a part of this story, which is why they didn't see it as something wrong.

Nick: Oh, sure. Yes. I think before we write someone off completely, we would want to confirm that they are actively choosing to do a bad thing.

Leah: Right, which I think a lot of people aren't doing. That's why I like to give that out.

Nick: Yes. Oh, absolutely. No, I have certainly had experiences where somebody did a bad thing. They actively chose not to take responsibility for it, were given multiple opportunities to do so, and then it was like, "Well, all right, you're out on the street now. Yeah. You're no longer in my theater."

Leah: Yeah. Nick put you outside.

Nick: Absolutely. That's it. So, that happens.

Leah: I also think that when somebody apologizes, I feel like it's important, if you really feel like they apologized and you're okay with the apology and the amends-making, to forgive that person and to let it go. If they do it again, that's a different thing, but if somebody actively does a good apology, and they recognize it, and then they try to make amends ... Because everybody makes mistakes-

Nick: I think it depends on the degree of the infraction.

Leah: Obviously, I'm assuming it's not something horrific.

Nick: Right, but I think you do need to acknowledge the apology. I think you should always acknowledge it. Like, "Thank you for apologizing. Thank you for recognizing that X, Y, Z was not great." I think you can always acknowledge it. Whether or not you want to accept the apology, I think that is up to you and your feelings, and you are free to do as you wish. Etiquette does not require you to accept all apologies immediately.

Leah: Yeah. I wish I hadn't said that because you're right.

Nick: [Giggling] Well, the point of the deep dive is to come to new understandings.

Leah: I think, a lot of times, people just do things, and they make mistakes, and then they try to make amends; but then, I wasn't even thinking about egregious errors.

Nick: Yes, when we get into worlds of betrayal, deceit ... When it's that, I don't think you're automatically obligated to forgive.

Leah: Or even some things are just bigger reflections of what type of a person they are-

Nick: Yes.

Leah: -that are not for you to forgive. They are just for you to not want in your life anymore. Obviously, that's not the same thing either.

Nick: True. Although, I think if somebody does something terrible, and they apologize, and you're still prepared just to let them loose, you could accept their apology, and then, that's the end of our relationship.

Leah: Yeah.

Nick: Yeah, you could also do that. That's fine.

Leah: What I don't think is necessarily helpful in any way is if somebody apologizes, you say you accept it, but then you keep bringing it up and banging them over the head with it.

Nick: Oh, good point. Yes, yes!

Leah: You either accept it, or you don't accept it, but if you do accept it, if you keep bringing it up, then you're not accepting it.

Nick: Yeah, that's a good point. If you're going to accept an apology, then we're done with that event, assuming that the infraction doesn't continue.

Leah: Right.

Nick: That behavior doesn't continue. Yeah, the previous event? Keep dredging it up? Yeah, this is not super-helpful.

Leah: I think either accept it or don't accept it.

Nick: Yes.

Leah: It's a good quality to foster in oneself - apologizing and accepting apologies.

Nick: Yes. At the end of the day, why we apologize is that it makes someone feel heard and acknowledged. That's what etiquette is all about is putting yourself in someone else's shoes, being mindful of other people and their feelings. Apologizing is part of that.

Leah: Yes and accepting apologies. I know that I make mistakes. I have people who have apologized to me, and I know they felt sorry, and it was a mistake, and that I make tons of mistakes. This is just a part of figuring out how to communicate unless it's an offensive thing they did. Obviously, that's a separate category.

Nick: Right. Then you're out!

Leah: Then you're out of the theater!

[Musical Interlude]

Nick: We're back, and now it's time to take some questions from you guys in the wilderness.

Leah: [Howling]

Nick: So, our first question ... Okay ...

Leah: [Laughing] "I have a question concerning my dog walker. When I went to pick up my dog the other day, he, the dog walker, was only in his underwear. I did not surprise him. He knew I was coming. I did not react in the moment, but how can I handle this in the future if it happens again? I'm a woman, and he's a bit older than me. This is unfortunately a relationship I do not want to end." So, to recap, presumably, the dog walker opened his front door wearing underwear, when our letter-writer came to pick up her dog. This is what I'm picturing. Not that the dog walker was just walking around in underwear in the neighborhood.

Leah: Yeah, no, that's definitely what I visualized, as well.

Nick: Okay. So ... What do we do about this?

Leah: This is what I wrote because our letter-writer wrote, "This is, unfortunately, a relationship I do not want to end."

Nick: Right.

Leah: This is what I would say-

Nick: Mm-hmm.

Leah: -even though ... This is what I would say if I was this letter-writer-

Nick: Okay.

Leah: -who didn't want to end this relationship. I would send this person a message, the dog walker a message, and I would say, "Sorry, I walked in on you the other day when you were changing. Next time, I'll text you in advance to make sure this never happens again. Thanks so much."

Nick: Okay. I like that. Here's the problem, though. The dogwalker knew you were coming. The dog walker doesn't mind being in his underwear. He's cool with it.

Leah: Oh, I know, I know, but I'm letting the dog walker know I'm not cool with it, so it doesn't happen again.

Nick: Well, your text message suggests that, "I will give you advance notice so that I don't startle you, or inconvenience you, so you're not caught without underwear, which was embarrassing for you." The way I read your text is- the response to that text could be, "Oh, no, I'm cool with it. It's fine."

Leah: Oh, then I would respond back, "Oh, it makes me uncomfortable, so that's why I just wanted to let you know."

Nick: Oh, okay. Well, yeah, you could just be more direct and say, "Oh, you being in your underwear makes me uncomfortable." Yeah.

Leah: I just wanted to start with giving them the benefit of the doubt that if I was like, "Hey, let me give you a heads up," that way I'm not assuming that they're showing me their tighty-whities on purpose.

Nick: True. Unfortunately, etiquette sort of operates on the assumption of shame and embarrassment. [Giggling] If somebody doesn't feel those things, then it is very difficult to have an etiquette response when things like this happen.

Leah: What would you say?

Nick: I mean ... I think if we didn't want a direct "Please be clothed ..." I guess I would give a heads-up next time I pick up the dog, like, "Hey, I'm coming over. Hopefully, you'll have enough time to put clothes on. :)" I guess it's the exact same thing that you said. Yeah, I don't know-

Leah: [Laughing]

Nick: -I don't know about this.

Leah: I mean, the other option is just to be very direct and say, "Hey, I'm uncomfortable when you don't have clothes on."

Nick: Yeah.

Leah: "Love to keep you as a dog walker, but ..."

Nick: "May need to button up-"

Leah: "... not in your panties."

Nick: Yeah. I guess the direct is probably good.

Leah: I just feel like the gentler way into that- you can have the same conversation by giving them a one-text shot to fix it without having to be that direct.

Nick: Would we be sending ... I mean, obviously, the ship has sailed, here. Would we want to send this immediately after this happens, or do we want to have this as a preemptive text, when we're about to pick up the dog again?

Leah: I think either works, since the ship has sailed.

Nick: Okay, but the idea is just to express surprise and apologizing for intruding at an awkward moment?

Leah: Yeah.

Nick: Okay. All right, I'll go with that.

Leah: And to add, "I don't want this to happen again."

Nick: Yes, "And this shall never happen again!" Yeah. Fair.

Leah: I don't love the idea of apologizing for somebody else being in their underwear, but I think it's a gentle way into this conversation because they said, "This is, unfortunately, a relationship I do not want to end."

Nick: Correct. Yeah, I think that's the best you could do with that.

Leah: Some people do walk around in their underwear, and it's not nefarious, or leering, or ... You know what I mean? They just are underwear-walkers.

Nick: Oh, yeah. Nothing about this sounded lascivious.

Leah: So, because I feel like this person doesn't feel endangered in any way, I think, that way, it's not commenting on how they live their nude lifestyle.

Nick: [Giggling] Okay. True. Our next question is: I recently dined with a friend at a restaurant in Melbourne, Australia, and we'd ordered a bottle of very nice wine to share from the Yarra Valley, which is nearby. We were painting a scene. We had some time to have a glass before our main course arrived. However, once they were delivered, and we'd had a few bites, my friend picked up his glass and took a sip of his wine without wiping his mouth on the napkin first. This left a visible smudge of grease and small food bits adhering to the rim of the glass from whence he had drunk. He continued to do this repeatedly throughout the meal. I, of course, said nothing, as it would have been rude to do so. However, am I wrong in thinking he should have used the napkin to dab his mouth clean prior to taking a sip? That's what I was always taught. It just seems unnecessarily barbaric to leave a greasy, filthy mess on your drinking vessel when there's a perfectly good napkin next to your plate! Is this poor etiquette? Is leaving a filthy mess on the side of a glass, while drinking, acceptable? Should I have done something else?"

Leah: I think you really can't do anything else because the only thing you would be doing is telling your friend that you think they're a mess, which is hurtful!

Nick: There is not a real great, easy way to tell someone they're barbaric. That's true.

Leah: Yes! I definitely get that our letter-writer thinks this person is barbaric because of the "filthy mess" description.

Nick: Uh-huh.

Leah: So-

Nick: Oh, a scene was painted.

Leah: Yeah.

Nick: I feel like I was in this very nice restaurant in Melbourne, drinking a wine from the Yarra Valley. I was there!

Leah: I think, you know, it's not like the person drinking the wine is being rude to people or-

Nick: True ...

Leah: They just happened to have a little sumpin'-sumpin' on their mouth, you know?

Nick: Uh-huh.

Leah: Sometimes, people aren't perfect.

Nick: Yes, there is a spectrum of table manners. That's true. I think it is true, it would be nice to dab your mouth, after eating, before you take a sip. I think that's a nice baseline thing we might want to consider doing because-

Leah: Oh, absolutely, but I don't think we tell other people to do it.

Nick: No, you cannot correct other people's table manners unless they are your child. You cannot correct other people's table manners. Full stop.

Leah: Because that would just really hurt somebody's feelings.

Nick: Yes. This would embarrass your friend, and we don't want to do that.

Leah: No!

Nick: So, the best you could do is to try and ignore it.

Leah: Yeah, just ignore that. If it drives you absolutely crazy, don't eat out with that person because, at the end of the day, they're not being rude to other people. You basically would be telling them that you don't like what a mess they are. Maybe just don't put yourself in that situation if you can't handle a dirty glass.

Nick: True. Yeah, it may be that anything involving glassware is just the wrong venue for this friendship.

Leah: Yeah.

Nick: We want to stick with something other than glassware.

Leah: I have one friend ... I don't really pay attention to how people eat. It's not one of my things-

Nick: Mm-hmm.

Leah: -but I have a friend who - I didn't know this - can't stand a lot of different eating habits. It puts her over the top.

Nick: Okay.

Leah: I didn't realize that we were not sitting by certain people eating on purpose. Then, she was like, "I just can't handle it."

Nick: Wow!

Leah: So, I do know people who have eating things, and they can't say things to these people who eat in a certain way because they feel like that would just hurt that person's feelings, so they just don't go out with them, when they're eating.

Nick: Yeah, no, that's true. I think you just have to not put yourself in the situation, if it bothers you that much.

Leah: I was also delighted to know that I wasn't in that group! [Laughing]

Nick: I find that a little surprising, yeah.

Leah: I know because I can be a little messy! Let's be honest.

Nick: I can see that coming up for you, yeah. I was looking at the internet, on this question, and people talk about lipstick on glassware quite a bit and how terrible that is. It's true. It would be nice if you didn't get lipstick all over your glass. Okay, fine, but it is sort of unavoidable, sometimes. I know, for me if I'm wearing Chapstick, that gets on your glass, too. I just try and make sure that that side of the glass is towards me and not towards my guest, and I try and always just sort of stick with one spot on the glass, so I don't have 360 degrees of Chapstick. Somebody was saying, on the internet, that the solution to preventing lipstick from sticking to your glass is to lick the glass first. Lick. The. Glass. So ... Don't do that. Please don't do that.

Leah: That's such a funny visual of someone just lickin' a full glass.

Nick: No, that's ... How do you do that in a discreet way? No!

Leah: I'm just doing the top for margaritas [Giggling]

Nick: Right. So, I guess it does work, but it doesn't mean you should do it. So, please don't do that. Our next question is: "About six months ago, my friends had a baby. They invited me over to meet her, and I offered to bring dinner to help them out during a busy and chaotic time. I brought a pasta casserole in a non-disposable pan, and I assumed we would eat together, and I would take the pan back. Instead, they put the pan in the fridge and said thank you, and I realized we would not be eating together. That was totally fine, and I didn't really mind, but I didn't plan for what to do about getting the pan back. They never gave the pan back to me, and now it's been six months. It feels rude to ask for the pan back, at this point, but is it actually rude?"

Leah: I understand feeling like it's rude because I always feel everything's rude, and I worry about it, but reading this question, I don't think it's rude. I think you could just be like, "Hey, can I come by some time and grab my pan?

Nick: Yeah. If your relationship is such that you were invited over to their house when a new baby happened, it's probably a close relationship, where you can just ask for your pan.

Leah: Yeah, especially because people, when they've just had kids, they're all over the place. They're tired, they're exhausted. They probably don't even remember!

Nick: Returning this pan to you was not a priority for them.

Leah: Yeah! I think that they would appreciate you just being like, "Oh, can I grab my pan?" They'd be like, "Oh, my goodness, I totally forgot we had it. Yeah, come by!" It's going to be easy, I think.

Nick: But I do think one flaw here is that we, "assumed we would eat together." I think that was a mistake. I think if we assumed were eating together ... Nah ... I wouldn't have assumed that. I think bringing something in a non-disposable pan, this was not ideal. I think the potential of this happening was very high, based on the circumstances.

Leah: Well, they said it was fine. They said it's fine. They got it. "We weren't eating together."

Nick: I mean, I think what you should do is, the next time you're over there, ask about the pan, but I don't know if we would necessarily, on a phone call, be like, "Hey, do you have my pan? Can I come over?"

Leah: Or you could be like, "I would love to- can I stop by, say hi ... Oh, may I grab my pan?"

Nick: Hmm. That's true.

Leah: "Let me see the kid ..."

Nick: Yeah, yeah. I think, if the pan doesn't exist anymore, or they can't find it, then I think we should just drop it.

Leah: Yeah. I still have some pans. I'm gonna be honest.

Nick: You still have pans?

Leah: I've got pans from people who've dropped off- I'll text them, "Do you want your pan?"

Nick: And they don't want them back?

Leah: Some people are like, "Oh, just keep it." [Laughing]

Nick: Okay.

Leah: You're like, "Really? This is a great pan!"

Nick: Are you keeping track of who's given you which pan?

Leah: Yeah, I know which pan came from whom.

Nick: Are you label-makering it? How are you inventorying this?

Leah: No, I mean, how many pans ...

Nick: I don't know your life!

Leah: It's not thousands of pans!

Nick: [Laughing] Okay. I mean, people would be bringing a lotta hot dish. I don't know.

Leah: [Laughing] Well, I also remember the dish that was in it.

Nick: Sure.

Leah: Then, I remember who cooked that dish.

Nick: Okay, fair enough.

Leah: I don't forget a food, Nick! [Laughing]

Nick: These were great questions.

Leah: Phenomenal!

Nick: Do you have questions for us that you want an answer returned?


Nick: Oh, yes, you do. Please send them to us. Send them to us through our website,, or you can send us a text message, or leave us a voicemail: (267) CALL-RBW (267-225-5729)

[Musical Interlude]

Nick: We're back, and now it's time to play a game we like to call Vent or Repent-

Leah: [Singing] Vent or REPENNNNT!

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 to vent or repent?

Leah: I had so much trouble with this because I honestly am having so few interactions with people.

Nick: Uh-huh?

Leah: This happened last time.

Nick: Okay.

Leah: The more in the woods I become.

Nick: So, you have achieved etiquette neutrality?

Leah: [Laughing] No, I'm just not having interactions. I'm not really having random interactions with people.

Nick: Fair enough. Okay.

Leah: The people I interact with, I know so well that-

Nick: But you dug deep.

Leah: I dug deep, and this feels almost like a PSA. I feel like I've brought this up before. It just blows my mind!

Nick: Okay?

Leah: I feel like businesses are trying so hard to remain open and follow protocol. Most businesses. Obviously, some people, they don't care. They have these nice signs: "Please wear your masks." They have the people working that are wearing their masks, everybody ...

There's always one or two people that need to come in, not wear a mask, and make a big hoopla about it. People working these stores are not ... They don't want to get in conflict, you know what I mean? It's not fair to ask the people working to be bouncers. Then, there's this person walking around, maskless. It's like, can't you just think about other people? Just throw it on!

I recently was in a store. Everybody ... Everybody was in a mask. Then, it was a family, and they were not masked. I was trying to go around them, and somehow, they, pushed one of the other family members into me as I was walking. I was like, "Really? You have to cause a ruckus, maskless, just to let everybody know?" You know what I mean?

Nick: Yeah.

Leah: I just don't understand this.

Nick: Yeah, it'd be one thing if it was just like, "I'm not wearing a mask," but then it's, "I want to make a point why I'm not, and I want you to know I'm making that point."

Leah: Yeah. What's the ...? Also, it isn't even one thing, if you don't want to wear a mask. If the store asks you to wear a mask, and you want to go into that store, I don't understand why you just can't follow ... What about the people working there? Don't you care about the people working there?

Nick: Uh, no is the answer.

Leah: Blows my mind!

Nick: Yeah.

Leah: I feel like, what's the point of venting about this because we've all been venting about it, but that's really the only vent I have.

Nick: Okay, fair enough. For me, I would also like to vent. I am coming home, one day, and I grab the mail, and I'm getting in the elevator, and then I get into my apartment, and I toss the keys into the bowl, and I'm shuffling through the various envelopes in the mail, and I see one that's a handwritten card ... It is so lovely to receive handwritten mail, that thrill of a card - Oh, how nice! We emphasize this on our show because it really is rare and lovely to receive handwritten correspondence. Totally lovely. So, I'm about to open it, and something on the corner of the envelope catches my eye, and I freeze. Now, I'm terrified-

Leah: [Laughing]

Nick: -because now, we have a hazmat situation, and I am contaminated! So, I walk through my apartment, and I'm in my kitchen, and I use my forehead to turn the light on in the kitchen because my hands are contaminated, and I don't want to touch anything. Like a bull, I'm just rocking my forehead up against the light switch to get it on. Okay, so now I'm standing in my kitchen, and I'm trying to figure out what to do because what was this toxin? Glitter. I saw. some glitter. coming out. of this greeting card ... Somebody had sent me a greeting card, and it had glitter on it ...

So, let me just say this. I love glitter. Humans love glitter. It is said that humans are actually preprogrammed to love glitter because it looks water, and we are programmed to always seek water; so, for our survival, anything that is a little glittery makes us attracted to it. Glitter - wonderful. However, I do not want it in my apartment, and here's why - I actually save all of the correspondence that you guys send into the show. I save it all. It goes into the archives, but if it has glitter on it, that's going to get on everything else, and I'm not going to save it!

So, I read this very lovely card that had glitter all over it and I basically read it over the recycling bin. Then, as soon as I was done, I dropped it in the recycling bin and immediately scrubbed my hands down to the bone and tried to make sure there was no stray glitter anywhere else in the apartment. So ... Please don't send cards with glitter. I think it's rude. I think it's insensitive to the recipient because it will get everywhere-

Leah: [Giggling]

Nick: -and nobody likes that.

Leah: No glitter for Nick!

Nick: No glitter, please. Thank you.

Leah: I love the visual of you hazmat-suiting with turning your lights on with your head-

Nick: Yes!

Leah: -so you cannot get it ... Oh, I get it! It gets on everything!

Nick: Yeah, it's terrible. Now, this is not license to send me glitter bombs, people. That would be rude! You know, I have a good vacuum. I can take care of it, but I would just rather not. It would fall into the "I'd Rather Not" category.

Leah: [Laughing] I'd rather not!

[Musical Interlude]

Nick: So, Leah, what have we learned?

Leah: I learned an option of the origin of white after Labor Day.

Nick: Mm hmm. Good to know!

Leah: I'm also reminded of how much I love John Waters.

Nick: Serial Mom - it's a classic.

Leah: Classic!

Nick: I learned that if I need an extra pan, I'm coming to your house.

Leah: C'mon over! Pans for days! [Laughing]

Nick: Well, thank you, Leah.

Leah: Thank you, Nick.

Nick: Thanks to you out there for listening. If I had your address, I'd send you a handwritten note on my custom stationery.

Leah: [Singing] With no glitter ...

Nick: That's very true. For your homework this week, do you know someone who might want to sponsor our show? We would love to be sponsored!

Leah: Oh, I love that idea! Great homework!

Nick: We want to partner with somebody who wants to partner with us, so if you know anybody, send them our way!

Leah: That's awesome. I love that!

Nick: We'll see you next time!

Leah: Bye!

Nick: Bye!

[Instrumental Theme Song]

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. Ready, set, go.

Leah: I'm heading back to New York this week, and I just wanted to do a shout out to my parents because it's been very, very lovely being with them. I'm grateful they had us in their home and shared meals with us. It's just been such a wonderful time, and I really appreciate it.

[Buzzer Sound]

Nick: That's nice! For me, I want to thank everybody who has taken advantage of our new If you don't know about this, we set up a special website where you can send in your own vents, or repents, and you can play with us. People have been sending in amazing anecdotes from their lives, and they've repented, and vented, and they're so fun to read. I really appreciate that people take the time to send these things in to us, so please send more in because I love it so much and thank you very much!

Leah: So cool! Thank you!

[Buzzer Sound]