Dinner and a no-show

Published 12:01 pm Tuesday, October 4, 2022

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Dear Aunty Pam,


I hope you can settle an argument between my husband and me. Here goes:

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We invited a couple who is new to our neighborhood over for dinner. We had met them twice before and because they have no family and no friends in the area, we thought we’d help make them feel welcome.


I like to entertain and really pushed out all the stops. I made a pork loin with several side dishes and a homemade apple pie for dessert. They really enjoyed the meal and we had a very nice evening.


Since then, we’ve not heard a peep out of them. I know that not many people send “thank you” notes anymore, but I thought at least they might pick up the phone the next day and call to thank us.


It’s been two weeks and I have to admit I’m pretty irritated. They live two doors down and I’m tempted to drop by to ask if there was something wrong with my pork loin, or the rest of the dinner. My husband says I shouldn’t do that and just let it go. But I went to a lot of trouble over that dinner, as well as cleaning my house until it sparkled. What do you say?






Dear Disappointed,


Now, exactly how do you plan to go over to Mr. and Mrs. Thoughtless and pretend that you were “just wondering if there was something wrong with my pork loin or my homemade pie?” If they say, “Why, no, it was delicious,” then are you actually going to say, “Well, I wanted to know because you haven’t thanked me and I’ve never met such rude people!” There’s also the chance they might also reply, “Well, now that you ask, actually, the food was awful, you were terrible hosts and we left skid marks getting the hell out of there.” Either way it’s ridiculous to even consider confronting them as though you’re busting in through the doors of a saloon.


Listen, I get that you’re very disappointed as would be Aunty Pam. Indeed you did go to a lot of time and trouble to create a welcoming atmosphere and a delicious meal. And there really is no excuse for them to have not, at the very least, picked up the phone to thank you. Some people were simply not taught manners in their youth, or, were taught them and are too lazy to use them.


Try to focus on what a good meal it actually was, what a grand cook you truly are and the fact that you extended a lovely gesture of good will. That’s what it’s all about, anyway, right? When we give, it shouldn’t come with a binding contract that demands reciprocation. We give simply because we feel it’s a good thing to do. And, of course, to be able to write it off our taxes.


Cheers, dear!


Aunty Pam