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Source: (consider it) Thread: Heaven: Dear Sine...
Belisarius
Lord Bountiful of Admin (Emeritus) Delights
# 32

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I admit committing the gaffe a few days ago, as something fairly urgent had to be relayed to a co-worker, but I agree it's in the "should be taken for granted" category. Then again, bathrooms really didn't exist back then one was likely to encounter bodily functions in a hallway.

--------------------
Animals may be Evolution's Icing, but Bacteria are the Cake.
Andrew Knoll

Posts: 8080 | From: New York | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Corpus cani

Ship's Anachronism
# 1663

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I don't mind acknowledgements in the gents' - it's the sneer and/or snigger that usually go with them... [Tear]

Corpus

--------------------
Bishop Lord Corpus Cani the Tremulous of Buzzing St Helens.

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RuthW

liberal "peace first" hankie squeezer
# 13

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quote:
Originally posted by Belisarius:
I admit committing the gaffe a few days ago, as something fairly urgent had to be relayed to a co-worker, but I agree it's in the "should be taken for granted" category.

Good grief, what would you have done if your co-worker had been female? [Eek!] [Biased]

quote:
Then again, bathrooms really didn't exist back then one was likely to encounter bodily functions in a hallway.
Another in the long list of reasons I'm glad I was born in the 20th century.
Posts: 24453 | From: La La Land | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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quote:
Originally posted by Belisarius:
I admit committing the gaffe a few days ago, as something fairly urgent had to be relayed to a co-worker

Like what? "There's a bomb threat. We have to evacuate (poor word choice) now!"?

Or is your co-worker so wired for sound he could do something about your emergency while standing at a urinal?

Having dealt with "fairly urgent somethings" for twenty-five years I find few of them to be so urgent that ten minutes or even half an hour makes much difference.

(That said, we did have comptroller who'd disappear into a stall with The Wall Street Journal for thirty minutes at a time, which could be annoying when one needed information fairly quickly.)

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Ariel
Shipmate
# 58

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quote:
Originally posted by Sine Nomine:
Or is your co-worker so wired for sound he could do something about your emergency while standing at a urinal?

Quite possibly. A colleague once told me that he'd seen someone at the urinals simultaneously dealing with a mobile phone call.

You aren't safe from mobiles anywhere.

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Amos

Shipmate
# 44

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Wonder what his ringtone is.

--------------------
At the end of the day we face our Maker alongside Jesus--ken

Posts: 7667 | From: Summerisle | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Ariel
Shipmate
# 58

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Well, Handel's Water Music springs to mind. Then again it might have been something by the Toilet Boys.
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Loquacious beachcomber
Shipmate
# 8783

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quote:
Originally posted by Ariel:
quote:
Originally posted by Sine Nomine:
Or is your co-worker so wired for sound he could do something about your emergency while standing at a urinal?

Quite possibly. A colleague once told me that he'd seen someone at the urinals simultaneously dealing with a mobile phone call.

You aren't safe from mobiles anywhere.

Ummmm - how did he have a spare hand to do that?
One hand would be holding the telephone, the other hand would be - well - busy - so how could he push the buttons on the telephone? [Confused] [Confused] [Confused]

--------------------
TODAY'S SPECIAL - AND SO ARE YOU (Sign on beachfront fish & chips shop)

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Flausa

Mad Woman
# 3466

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Dear Uncle Sine,

I've benefitted greatly from your sage advice over the last few days, and I wanted to thank you for so graciously sharing your wisdom with us.

I now have a question for you. My husband and I will be crossing the Atlantic next week for two weeks. Along the way we will be depending upon the goodness of friends and acquaintances for various things, including housing us for a few days, taking us on sightseeing excursions, and giving us route tips and restaurant suggestions.

What would be some appropriate host/hostess gifts for those various occastions? Should we bring gifts from here or hope to find something in the US? What would be an appropriate amount of money to spend?

Thank you in advance for your consideration to this matter.

Yours faithfully,
Flausa

Posts: 4610 | From: bonny Scotland | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
Belisarius
Lord Bountiful of Admin (Emeritus) Delights
# 32

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In my defense, I happened to "run into" him in the Men's room after checking his cube and made a "while I'm thinking about it" blurt.

--------------------
Animals may be Evolution's Icing, but Bacteria are the Cake.
Andrew Knoll

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RuthW

liberal "peace first" hankie squeezer
# 13

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quote:
Originally posted by Jeremiah Gutzywuk:
quote:
Originally posted by Ariel:
quote:
Originally posted by Sine Nomine:
Or is your co-worker so wired for sound he could do something about your emergency while standing at a urinal?

Quite possibly. A colleague once told me that he'd seen someone at the urinals simultaneously dealing with a mobile phone call.

You aren't safe from mobiles anywhere.

Ummmm - how did he have a spare hand to do that?
One hand would be holding the telephone, the other hand would be - well - busy - so how could he push the buttons on the telephone? [Confused] [Confused] [Confused]

You can get a cell phone with an earpiece. I think you have to push a button to answer a call, but after that you're hands-free. People walk down the street looking like they're talking to themselves all the time now around here. Kind of makes the crazy homeless people look less crazy.

quote:
Originally posted by Belisarius:
In my defense, I happened to "run into" him in the Men's room after checking his cube and made a "while I'm thinking about it" blurt.

It's okay, we didn't actually think you'd done the girl thing of going to the bathroom as part of a pair!
Posts: 24453 | From: La La Land | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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quote:
Originally posted by Flausa:
What would be some appropriate host/hostess gifts for those various occastions? Should we bring gifts from here or hope to find something in the US? What would be an appropriate amount of money to spend?

I can think of a couple of reasons for not bringing gifts with you, aside from not wanting to feel like you're weighted down with beads and trinkets for the Indians.

You might pick up appropriate gift ideas after you've stayed with these folks and seen their houses that you won't know of in advance. A gift arriving in the mail from "furrin parts" is always exciting to the recipient. I would suggest you wait until you get back home and then have an appropriate gift mail-ordered to your hosts. If no better inspiration strikes, nothing wrong with sending them local food specialities.

Now I'm open to correction here, but I think a gift is only called for to those who put you up for the night. Otherwise a charming short letter thanking them for the meal or such should be fine. Possibly with a couple of snap shots of your vacation fun included.

Cost for host/hostess gift: around $25.00

Do those who travel more than I agree? Disagree?

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Ariel
Shipmate
# 58

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quote:
Originally posted by Jeremiah Gutzywuk:
Ummmm - how did he have a spare hand to do that?
One hand would be holding the telephone, the other hand would be - well - busy - so how could he push the buttons on the telephone? [Confused] [Confused] [Confused]

Depends on the size of your mobile. The smaller ones fit neatly into your palm and you use your thumb to press the buttons.

I still think anyone who uses a mobile in these circumstances is lacking in social graces though.

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Loquacious beachcomber
Shipmate
# 8783

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quote:
Originally posted by Ariel:
quote:
Originally posted by Jeremiah Gutzywuk:
Ummmm - how did he have a spare hand to do that?
One hand would be holding the telephone, the other hand would be - well - busy - so how could he push the buttons on the telephone? [Confused] [Confused] [Confused]

Depends on the size of your mobile. The smaller ones fit neatly into your palm and you use your thumb to press the buttons.

I still think anyone who uses a mobile in these circumstances is lacking in social graces though.

It is also quite important, and far more sanitary, when greeted while standing at a urinal, to finish the - ahem - task at hand, before turning to the person to reply.

--------------------
TODAY'S SPECIAL - AND SO ARE YOU (Sign on beachfront fish & chips shop)

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Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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Dear Uncle Sine,

As you well know I am ushering for the first time at the main service at the cathedral tomorrow.

I have a smart new outfit prepared as well as a stylish summer haircut that should make everyone else feel shabby and inferior. I have practiced my weak smile and my mumbled "good morning" for the hoi polloi and my dazzling grin and hearty handshake for any attractive hunks, as well as making sure they fill out visitor's cards with their names and phone numbers.

I am prepared to cruelly taunt and then eject any yucky homeless types who wander in during the service and to stuff newcomers into the pews of parishioners I don't like. I have praticed glaring at the parents of unruly children and crying infants, hoping to make them uncomfortable enough to leave.

Is there anything I'm forgetting? I do so want make a good impression on the head usher since he's recently sold his software company for ten million dollars and also is between boyfriends.

Anxiously,
Sine Nomine

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Grits
Compassionate fundamentalist
# 4169

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Dear Sine Nomine,

Don't forget the young folks. Teens are generally always unhappy or, at least, uncomfortable, being at church, and there's bound to be some way to add to their displeasure.

I would recommend hugging, complimenting their outfits, and referring to them as "chicks" and "dudes".

With warmest regards,
Auntie Grits

--------------------
Lord, fill my mouth with worthwhile stuff, and shut it when I've said enough. Amen.

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Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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Oh, thank-you, Auntie Grits. I had quite forgotten about making the youth uncomfortable. How remiss of me. And I must be sure to sound annoyed when I ask the lady in the wheelchair if the priest has to walk all the way to the back of the nave to give her communion.

There's more to ushering than first meets the eye.

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Dee.
Ship's Theological Acrobat
# 5681

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Dear Uncle Sine,

Don't forget to lock the doors to the bathrooms just before the service and forget to unlock them. That way everyone will need to go home quickly after the service leaving you easy access to after service coffee.

On second thoughts, only lock the ladies, that will clear of any women and men with female partners leaving the cost clearer for spotting any juicy morsels that may need a wee chat.

Yours

Aunty Dee

--------------------
Jesus - nice bloke, bit religious

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jlg

What is this place?
Why am I here?
# 98

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*sigh*

Just when I had thought the Ship of Fools had a guaranteed money-maker publishing 'Dear Uncle Sine' - the new successor to 'Miss Manners' - the advice goes all southern inbred and questionable.

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Peppone
Marine
# 3855

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Dear Sine,

Suppose I knew somebody who wanted to stop wearing his wedding ring: He's been thinking of taking it off when he makes the bread in the evening, and then just sort of not putting it back on. What do you think? My, uh, friend really wants to handle this stage correctly.

--------------------
I looked at the wa's o' Glasgow Cathedral, where vandals and angels painted their names,
I was clutching at straws and wrote your initials, while parish officials were safe in their hames.

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Firenze

Ordinary decent pagan
# 619

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Stage? Stage? What process exactly are we talking about here?
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Peppone
Marine
# 3855

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He's not sure. There are definitely stages (he says) but it's not easy (he reckons) to say what process they form a part of.
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Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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quote:
Originally posted by Peppone:
He's been thinking of taking it off when he makes the bread in the evening, and then just sort of not putting it back on. What do you think? My, uh, friend really wants to handle this stage correctly.

These things take time. Also, as the expression goes "it takes what it takes". Is he forcing himself to move on just because he thinks he should? Or is he really ready?

If he's ready my suggestion to him would be to buy himself a nice initialed signet ring for the index finger of the same hand and wear it instead. he is, after all, used to having a ring on that hand.

He should leave both rings in the tray on his dresser. That way in the morning he can make a conscious decision as to which one he feels better wearing that day. Hopefully over time he'll come to prefer wearing the signet ring.

Good luck to your friend.

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Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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quote:
Originally posted by jlg:
the advice goes all southern inbred and questionable.

Inbred it may be. Questionable - never.
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Ariel
Shipmate
# 58

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I thought one was not supposed to wear an signet ring, let alone an initialled one. At least, not on this side of the pond. I was told it is Not Considered The Done Thing.
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Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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Quite nice people wear them all the time over here. They are considered fairly ordinary and unremarkable. In this case I liked a signet ring because of its resemblance to a wedding band. The same but not the same.

(I once canceled an order for a signet ring because upon reflection it did seem so ordinary considering the cost. I went for an estate gold and lapis ring instead. If I'm paying good money for jewelry I want it to be a litte flashy.)

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Anna B
Shipmate
# 1439

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Dear Sine,

As the weather gets warmer, I have been taking my son to the playground more and more, where I often fall into conversation with the other parents. Inevitably I am asked whether the Prophetlet is our only child, and then---get this---whether we are "planning to have any more."

I really don't wish to answer the latter question for a number of reasons, none of which is any business of someone I've only just met. Can you provide me with a response that is both polite and effective?

--------------------
Bad Christian (TM)

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Eliab
Shipmate
# 9153

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quote:
Originally posted by The Prophetess:
Can you provide me with a response that is both polite and effective?

Until recently, I was often asked similar questions about whether and when I was planning to have a first child. Having experimented with a number of polite and impolite responses, the most effective reply I found to "When are you planning to have children?" was "nine months after we next have sex".

I'm sure it will work as well for child number two.

--------------------
"Perhaps there is poetic beauty in the abstract ideas of justice or fairness, but I doubt if many lawyers are moved by it"

Richard Dawkins

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Eliab
Shipmate
# 9153

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Dear Sine,

Like most creatures with a human digestive system, after a good meal I tend to belch. I'm not a barbarian. I do try to let out the wind as quietly and discreetly as possible.

However my wife insists (often vocally) that I should also say "pardon me" or some such excuse. I object to this on two grounds: firstly honesty - I didn't design my intestines and feel no need at all to ask pardon for their activity; and secondly, I feel it is somewhat impolite to draw public attention to my bodily functions.

Recently, matters have become worse, because we now have a young infant who Mrs Eliab not only actively encourages to burp after feeding but also profusely congratulates when he manages to do so. I, however, receive only filthy looks and sharp words. How can I cure my wife of this shocking double-standard?

[ 05. June 2005, 13:30: Message edited by: Eliab ]

--------------------
"Perhaps there is poetic beauty in the abstract ideas of justice or fairness, but I doubt if many lawyers are moved by it"

Richard Dawkins

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Robert Armin

All licens'd fool
# 182

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Dear Sine,

What is the correct expletive to use when one has been away on holiday, and out of computer contact, for a week and then discovers that a really intersting new thread has started but one has to read five ******* pages to catch up with it?

(However, I have laughed out loud at every one of those pages I must admit.)

--------------------
Keeping fit was an obsession with Fr Moity .... He did chin ups in the vestry, calisthenics in the pulpit, and had developed a series of Tai-Chi exercises to correspond with ritual movements of the Mass. The Antipope Robert Rankin

Posts: 8927 | From: In the pack | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Ariel
Shipmate
# 58

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As I'm sure you are aware, the only correct expletive for anyone of a religious persuasion is "Deo Gratias!" to be uttered in a joyful tone with a smile on one's face.

(However, I'll await Sine's ruling on this one.)

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PataLeBon
Shipmate
# 5452

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quote:
Originally posted by The Prophetess:
Can you provide me with a response that is both polite and effective?

I always like using the statement: When God gives me one. Usually stops the questioning cold.
Posts: 1907 | From: Texas | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged
Corpus cani

Ship's Anachronism
# 1663

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Eliab - my advice is this:

After your next meal, give Mrs Eliab a big hug and when, as she surely will, she pats you on the back mid hug, belch and throw up on her shoulder. Then you too will be praised.

Now Sine - what's the goss on your first outing as Usher?

Corpus

--------------------
Bishop Lord Corpus Cani the Tremulous of Buzzing St Helens.

Posts: 4435 | From: Trumpton | Registered: Nov 2001  |  IP: Logged
Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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quote:
Originally posted by The Prophetess:
Inevitably I am asked whether the Prophetlet is our only child, and then---get this---whether we are "planning to have any more."

Bless their hearts, they mean well and are only trying to make conversation, not realizing how personal such questions can be. The not-so-nice me would be tempted to respond "I don't know. What do you advise?" and watch them sputter. Then there's always (in a slightly incredulous tone) "I BEG your pardon??" followed immediately by "Lovely weather we're having, don't you think?" - that usually gets the point across, but maybe not as politely as you'd like, you being appallingly nice and all.

Sooo...I'd suggest a simple "We haven't decided yet. How about you?" That way you've immediately put the conversational focus back on them.

(Of course it would really be cool if you could convincingly burst into tears when they ask you such questions, but that might upset your son.)

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Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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quote:
Originally posted by Corpus cani:
Eliab - my advice is this:

After your next meal, give Mrs Eliab a big hug and when, as she surely will, she pats you on the back mid hug, belch and throw up on her shoulder. Then you too will be praised.

I think that's hard advice to beat. But actually I'm with Mrs. Eliab. A quick "pardon me" won't kill you. (Married people pick the strangest things to fight about, don't they?)

quote:
Now Sine - what's the goss on your first outing as Usher?

How very kind of you to ask. The check is in the mail.

Had only someone told me just to pretend I was Vanna White it would have saved a lot of worry on my part. Piece-O-Cake. I was nice to everyone too, regardless of physical appearance or socio-economic status.

(My chief concern was dropping the offertory plate or having a bill fly off when we took them up to the altar, but neither of those fears came true, thankfully.)

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Moo

Ship's tough old bird
# 107

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quote:
Originally posted by Sine Nomine
Bless their hearts, they mean well...

Your Southern roots are showing.

Moo

--------------------
Kerygmania host
---------------------
See you later, alligator.

Posts: 20365 | From: Alleghany Mountains of Virginia | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
RuthW

liberal "peace first" hankie squeezer
# 13

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I have a feeling Sine is all Southern -- roots, trunk and leaf.
Posts: 24453 | From: La La Land | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Grits
Compassionate fundamentalist
# 4169

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quote:
I was nice to everyone...
The truest mark of a Southerner. [Smile]

--------------------
Lord, fill my mouth with worthwhile stuff, and shut it when I've said enough. Amen.

Posts: 8419 | From: Nashville, TN | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
hedonism_bot
Shipmate
# 5027

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Dear Sine,

As you seem to be an authority on matters of fashion as well as etiquette, please answer this for me : when wearing morning dress is it acceptable, if one has misplaced one's socks, to paint one's ankles black to hide this fact?

Posts: 778 | From: Running from the grand ennui | Registered: Oct 2003  |  IP: Logged
Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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Have you looked in the medicine cabinet?
Posts: 10696 | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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Sorry. I get a little giddy sometimes.

To answer your question: In an emergency such as you describe, yes, it's OK to paint your legs black...however first you must shave your ankles and calves and moisturize them thoroughly so you appear to be wearing dress hose and not casual mohair socks. That would never do.

Posts: 10696 | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
hedonism_bot
Shipmate
# 5027

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You are wise.
Posts: 778 | From: Running from the grand ennui | Registered: Oct 2003  |  IP: Logged
Corpus cani

Ship's Anachronism
# 1663

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quote:
Originally posted by Sine Nomine:
How very kind of you to ask. The check is in the mail.

Not at all - I was concerned and just had to enquire.

Now, about that cheQUE... Clearly "Pounds Sterling" - anything else would be simply too exquisitely vulgar...

Corpus

--------------------
Bishop Lord Corpus Cani the Tremulous of Buzzing St Helens.

Posts: 4435 | From: Trumpton | Registered: Nov 2001  |  IP: Logged
Archimandrite
Shipmate
# 3997

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quote:
Originally posted by Corpus cani:
quote:
Originally posted by Sine Nomine:
How very kind of you to ask. The check is in the mail.

Not at all - I was concerned and just had to enquire.

Now, about that cheQUE... Clearly "Pounds Sterling" - anything else would be simply too exquisitely vulgar...

Corpus

On the contrary. Guineas.
Posts: 1580 | From: Oxford | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
Firenze

Ordinary decent pagan
# 619

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quote:
Originally posted by Archimandrite:
quote:
Originally posted by Corpus cani:
quote:
Originally posted by Sine Nomine:
How very kind of you to ask. The check is in the mail.

Not at all - I was concerned and just had to enquire.

Now, about that cheQUE... Clearly "Pounds Sterling" - anything else would be simply too exquisitely vulgar...

Corpus

On the contrary. Guineas.
Or, to adapt from Mrs General -

'I cannot object - though even that is disagreeable to me - to Mr Nomine's inquiring, in confidence of my friends here, what amount they have been accustomed, at quarterly intervals, to pay to my credit at my bankers'.

[ 07. June 2005, 07:42: Message edited by: Firenze ]

Posts: 17302 | From: Edinburgh | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
hedonism_bot
Shipmate
# 5027

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Dear Sine,

I am attending a wedding in France at the weekend. A friend who is also going has just announced his ensemble, which consists of a white unstructured linen jacket and (brace yourself) matching shorts. How can I dissuade himself from shaming our country thus?

Posts: 778 | From: Running from the grand ennui | Registered: Oct 2003  |  IP: Logged
EnglishRose
Shipmate
# 4808

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I'm sure Uncle Sine will be along shortly with some excellent advice.

In the meantime, I am reminded of a character in one of Nancy Mitford's novels who greatly enjoyed watching his new wife making a rag rug but planned to have a fatal accident with a bottle of ink once the carpet was completed. If all else fails you might have to have a similar accident just before you set off for the wedding - a glass of red wine should do the trick nicely [Devil]

Posts: 544 | From: London | Registered: Aug 2003  |  IP: Logged
Sine Nomine*

Ship's backstabbing bastard
# 3631

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quote:
Originally posted by hedonism_bot:
A friend who is also going has just announced his ensemble, which consists of a white unstructured linen jacket and (brace yourself) matching shorts. How can I dissuade himself from shaming our country thus?

Oh dear. Oh dear. Matching shorts, you say? One would like to suggest he put the outfit on and look in the mirror, but one presumes he's done this already and seen nothing wrong with it, so this is a tough nut to crack.

I can only assume this is an informal garden wedding in the south of France somewhere. If it's in a church your friend is beyond redemption and I'd just make sure I didn't sit too close to him.

Now I have an unstructured white linen jacket myself, and it's very difficult to wear without looking like a lab technician on the loose. But with shorts! Apparently he sees nothing wrong with his skinny white hairy legs being exposed to public view at what is supposed to be a joyous occasion.

Not knowing the exact details of the occasion, or how close you are to this "friend"(You really do have some weird friends, by the way.) it's difficult to give a "one size fits all" answer. But here are some suggestions:

"Where did you find white knee socks to go with that outfit?" - perhaps that will awaken him to the mistake he's about to make.

"It's the bride's special day, should you be drawing so much attention from her?" - maybe that will appeal to his vanity as well as reminding him that only the bride should wear white to a wedding.

But probably stronger measures are called for. How about "Oh what fun! That's what I'm wearing too! We must be sure to sit together so we'll look like the Doublemint Twins."

If he can imagine you in a white jacket with matching shorts maybe he can then make the mental leap to imagining himself in same. Hopefully that will do the trick.

Posts: 10696 | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
Presleyterian
Shipmate
# 1915

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Lord have mercy, they're bringing back The Doublemint Twins.
Posts: 2450 | From: US | Registered: Dec 2001  |  IP: Logged
Flausa

Mad Woman
# 3466

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Dear Sine,

I admit to looking at the Doublemint Twin website as linked above - some sort of strange pull. Anyway, I was looking at a couple of the profiles, and I found this from twin brothers Gary and Mark:

quote:
We enjoy spending time with our beautiful nine-year old daughters, who are not only half-sisters and cousins but were also born only 5 days apart!
Hubby and I were trying to unravel the mystery of how there daughters can be half-sisters and cousins and only 5 days apart. In your wisdom, can you explain how this can be?

Sincerely,
Stumped in Scotland

Posts: 4610 | From: bonny Scotland | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged



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