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04.25.2002: Etiquette Schmetiquette
common-sense manners for real-world living |
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continued from page 1
housewarming traditions, cont. 
I have to admit that my first reaction upon receiving your email was: "Duh Ö I dunno Ė isnít wine a welcome gift at any occasion?" And as embarrassed as I am to admit it, Iíve never, ever seen Itís a Wonderful Life (yes, I know itís a classic). So, I did a little research to find out what the deal is with wine at housewarmings Ö

Apparently, the scene youíre remembering from Itís A Wonderful Life has to do with a little housewarming speech that Mary and George offer to the Martinis after helping them move into their new house: "Bread that this house may never know hunger. Salt that life may always have flavor. And wine that joy and prosperity may reign forever." Iím guessing the proverb traces its origins further back than that movie, but unfortunately, I wasnít able to uncover anything more about its roots. Of course, the best reason to give wine in my book is that itís lovely to drink, good to share with friends Ö and since itís consumable, takes up no space once itís been polished off!

what to wear to a wedding 
I know itís inappropriate for anyone other than the bride to wear white to a wedding, but are all other colors okay? Iíve heard some people say that you should never wear red to a wedding, and that blackís not appropriate either. All my friends are suddenly getting married and with so many weddings coming up, I just want to make sure I donít offend someoneís sense of etiquette by wearing the wrong color. Ė Color Me Confused

A: As you mentioned, just about the one thing everyone agrees on is that itís a no-no to wear white to a wedding, unless you happen to be the one standing up there holding hands with the groom saying your I doís. That goes for ivory, cream, and any other potentially bridal-looking variation of white as well, by the way. Beyond that, the juryís still out. 

The reasoning behind the no-red rule is that redís too showy and bold, and itís rude to wear anything that might upstage the bride. Honestly, Iím pretty much of the opinion that thereís really no way any guest could ever compete with that happy-bridal-glow anyway -- you could show up in head-to-toe neon-orange and everyone would still be focused on the radiant bride (though perhaps, your radioactive luminescence might cause a very temporary distraction/blinding). My

feeling is that redís fine, as long as the cut of the dress is tasteful and elegant, and doesnít, in conjunction with the style of your chosen ensemble, scream, "I am a shameless harlot!" 

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