December 27, 2016
Dear Mr. Blog:
I am throwing a big New Year’s Eve soiree and I am inviting the crème de la crème of society. Nearly the entire Wayne Rogers Junior High marching band will be there! But I have a problem that I hope you can help me with. I don’t want to be a laughingstock at my next algebra club meeting.
How is a combination of cake and ice cream to be served? On a dessert plate or in a bowl? How is it eaten? Fork or spoon? Is it ever proper to eat from a plate with a spoon?
(Signed) Bruin Z. Othello, AKA Myron from the Block
This is just the sort of letter I’d toss
in the trash over to Mr. Know-It-All’s desk but he’s been locked in the men’s room since last week. However, Myron, I found a good substitute. This is an actual answer to your question from Miss Manners. Yes, she is still alive… sort of.
GENTLE READER: Have you ever tried to eat ice cream with a fork?
You needn’t. Contrary to what many people believe, Miss Manners assures you that etiquette is not out to trick you. When dessert is both textured and runny or gooey, both a spoon and a fork should be available.
It would also be too much of a challenge to have to eat cake from a bowl. The ice cream is properly placed on top of the cake, so that any melting will be absorbed before getting to the plate.
“Too much of a challenge to have to eat cake from a bowl”??? Seriously? Miss Manners’ dictionary must have a different meaning of the word “challenge” than mine does.
Is it too hard to put the cake in a bowl, plop some ice cream on top of it, and eat it all with a spoon? If you can’t eat a piece of cake with a spoon and need to break out a fork to do some heavy lifting, you are A: serving the wrong kind of cake or B: clearly doing something wrong with your life.
Myron, what kind of a person can’t figure this one out?
The question is Imponderable.
And in case anyone was wondering, that was an actual letter to Miss Manners from just last week. Sigh, I weep for the world. Somewhere in Europe there are starving kids who would eat a piece of cake with their bare hands out of a tiger’s mouth and people here worry about which utensil to use? This is why I hate people.