Etiquette Boss: Pointers for enjoying finger food

March 5, 2013 Phillipa Morrish
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YOUR BEST INVESTMENT: Etiquette for Children

The ‘Three Finger’ Rule

Place a tray of cookies, candy or any other finger-food that children like to eat, and their natural tendency is to pick up as many as possible, using all five fingers, especially before they are taught consideration for others.

However as children grow older, gentle guidance is needed to teach the etiquette of picking up food correctly. A small history lesson will aid in understanding the rule as it applies to picking up finger foods.

In ancient Roman Empire, before the birth of the middle class, and before the invention of the knife and fork, all citizens ate with their fingers. The upper class or aristocrats picked up their food with three fingers: the thumb, middle and index fingers. The commoner used all five fingers.

The landed gentry had unlimited amounts of time to wine and dine, while the commoner had to rush a meal due to work commitments. Whatever the reason, the ‘three finger rule’ still applies today when it comes to picking up and eating foods such as cookies or even handling flatware.

The three-fingered lift (pinkie down) is still a symbol of breeding, while the five-fingered grasp was an indicator of lower, or working class behavior.



“Do not regret growing older; it is a privilege denied to many.” Unknown

We all want to grow old without looking old. One body part that shows age and sun damage quite early, is the décolleté area. As spring approaches, we need to do some rejuvenation work if we are to take that strapless dress out of the closet confidently.

First, pretend that your neck and chest are an extension of your face. Use sunscreen plus moisturizer. Every day, for 30 days, apply Vitamin E oil on the clean chest area. In addition, twice per week, combine Arm and Hammer Baking Soda with a cleansing wash and gently exfoliate. Apply sunblock half an hour before going outdoors. Within three weeks, you will feel better about wearing those low-cut dresses.

Phillipa Morrish is the president of Etiquette Training International.

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