Hello and welcome to the inaugural post of Anthony's Everyday Advice! This blog has been conceived with the intention of handing out advice and answering questions having to do with etiquette, party-planning, and ideas for adding a little bit of elegance and ceremony to everyday life.
We live in a world where men barely open doors for ladies and people rarely open doors for their elders. We've donated or sold off our grandmother's cherished silver services because they were to hard to keep polished. As a people, we all too often come home from being overworked and merely sit in front of the TV, instead of persuing conversation or a hobby. God forbid we read for enjoyment! Granted, there was never an ideal age when truly everthing was right with the world and everyone was treated with genuine respect and enjoyed giving and receiving hospitality or when a harsh word was never, hardly ever, uttered in public. Nor has there ever been a time like now, when a group sits down to dinner and may notice several people at the table having conversations with other friends miles away via text and when people wear jeans to weddings. There must be a happy, reachable medium that we may strive for and life with.
As I write this I must convince and justify to myself that I am the person that should dole out advice. And, to be honest, I can't see why I should tell people how to live their lives, but I can't see why I shouldn't make suggestions and share the advice I've learned from some of the kindest and most considerate people it's been my priviledge to know.
Six years ago today my grandmother passed away. After the sadness, anger, and sense of loss brought on by her death passed, I came to remember Grammy's spirit and her kindness. Of course, no one has ever been perfect, but we all hold our grandparents in the highest esteem and we tend to learn a great many things from those people we spend a great deal of time with. From my time with Grammy I concluded that kindness, consideration, and gentility are the most redeeming and memorable traits anyone can possess.
My father's parents were mill workers. They spent their lives working for GE and raised six children on very modest salaries. On the eve of retirement they were run over and spent their last remaining years struggling to live and to enjoy watching their children and grandchildren grow. My grandfather died of cancer. My grandmother followed him within two years from Alzheimer's. Yet, with those troubles, Grammy and Grampy could make someone feel like they were the only person in the room. They were generous with what they had and no grandchild's accomplishment ever went unrecognized. Nor did we ever have a bad Christmas.
My thoughts of Grammy run to her blue eyes and that everyone was welcomed in her home. My father told me that growing up he knew that no matter what time he got home from work or a game that Grammy would have dinner waiting for him. I remember how she loved tea and her many cups and saucers. I remember her love of music and how even years after the accident when she hard great difficulty walking and keeping balance how she and I would slowly dance to the old crooners, like Jerry Vale, in her parlor (or living room as most of us would call it now).
What I mean to say, as I prattle on and on, is that Grammy and Grampy's example to me of hospitality, kindness, and respect is what I would like to impart with my blog. It's my goal that when people come to my house that they leave with the same feeling I left Grammy and Grampy's house with. I want to be able to give advice and suggestions to help people know that consideration and good manners are timeless.
It is my sincere hope that I may play a small part in reviving some form of chivalry and a more "up-to-date" sort of etiquette that our fast-paced world seems to be lacking. With help in the forms of questions from readers, references from well-known and respected "Etiquette Gurus," and inspiration from everyday occurrences; I feel I will be able to do just that.