While you're certainly a very-refined gentleman, even those with high pedigrees among us can still use a few tips when it comes to better behaving ourselves during important meals. So, whether it's a chow-down for work or a romantic dinner with a significant other, here's some suggestions to make certain your table manners don't hit the floor.
Plan to arrive at least 10 minutes early. Not only does this provide a buffer in case you're running late, it's also certain to make a strong impression with your dining partner.
Keep The Phone In Your Pocket & On Silent
A nice meal is a chance to look someone in the face and have a conversation -- and even hearing a phone buzzing from your pocket distracts from that connection. It's also mildly disrespectful.
Place That Napkin On Your Lap
This is table manners 101. Keep your napkin on your lap until everyone is done eating, then place it back on the table, to the left of the plate. If you need to use the restroom during the meal, place the napkin on your chair while you're gone.
Know How To Hold 'Em
Hold your fork and knife like you would a pen. The caveman method is a no-go.
Getting That Last Bite
If you're using the knife as a wall to push the last bite of food onto your fork... knock it off. Use only the fork to scoop up that last bite and if a little is left behind, you'll be OK.
Don't Start Just Yet
In most cases, don't start eating before everyone receives their food -- even if they insist.
Wait Until You're Done Chewing Before Taking A Drink
Take small bites and chew slowly as no one wants to see you washing down a mouthful of steak or the backwash that might follow.
Cut Only One Piece Of Food At A Time
In most situations, it's great to have foresight and plan ahead. However, when it comes to food, take the time and cut one bite as you go - it's more polite and it won't dry out your meat (something in that sentence sounds wrong).
Be A Decent Human
As mentioned in the first point, taking time for a nice meal is as much about the people as it is the food. So if on a date, pull out the chair for your significant other. Politely and quietly, excuse yourself from the table if you need to use the restroom. Cover any cough, yawn or sneeze. Just try to be a decent, considerate human for the duration of the meal.
Breaking Down Where Stuff Goes
Don't know where utensils and glasses and condiments go on the table. We borrowed some charts for you.
This article was written and appeared on firstname.lastname@example.org. Grooming Lounge and our Founder, Mike Gilman, were quoted a lot, so we borrowed the article. Giving them credit -- hope it's OK.
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