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  #1  
May 4th, 2008, 03:59 PM
short_n_swt's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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We went out for breakfast this morning, and someone in the section we were sitting near was blowing their nose-they were obviously sick with a cold or something. Anyways, after a couple times the girl blew her nose, someone said 'that's disgusting, you don't blow your nose or cough around where other people eat'. The girl said she was sick and she apologized if she disrupted them, but she blew her nose a couple times through out our meal, and the others still made some comments.

While I agree to a certain extent that I don't want to sit there and listen to someone blowing their snoze my entire meal, I also know that sometimes you just need to blow your nose and can't always make it to the bathroom to be discreet.

So...is this rude? Is it unacceptable and poor table ettiquette to blow your nose in a restaurant, or are some people just finicky and need to learn to pick their squabbles?

ETA: this was at Dennys.
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  #2  
May 4th, 2008, 04:04 PM
Just Nana's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I do think its rude. I am sorry you can always leave and go to the restroom. Its really bad manners I think. Having said that I would not have said anything but I would have asked to be moved to another table if it bothered me that much.
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  #3  
May 4th, 2008, 04:17 PM
Gracey and Evan's Ma
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I guess Im rude. I have severe allergies almost ALL YEAR (Im allergic to almost EVERYTHING-except 1 type of oak tree and centipede grass). I have to blow my nose a good bit, enough that Im not going to get up and go to the bathroom EVERY SINGLE TIME. I wouldnt ever work with food again (was a hostess for a short time, but I couldnt handle the peanut dust) because of it.. but Im not going to NOT go to a restaurant because of it. You can either hear me blow my nose occasionally or you can listen to me sniff the snot back up my nose loudly the ENTIRE time. Or I could sit and have snot running down my face while you try to eat (sounds appetizing, eh?).. Your choice! I think if ppl knew how food was handled in many restaurants, someone blowing their nose nearby would be the least of the things nauseating them .
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  #4  
May 4th, 2008, 04:25 PM
LadyCoconut's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I very rarely blow my nose, and so my opinion may be little biased because of that. The only times I blow my nose are when I'm really sick, in which case it's unlikley I'd be eating out. If I were in public I would go to the bathroom or somewhere else to blow my nose. If I were in that restaurant in close proximity, it would probably gross me out a little but I would NEVER say anything or ask to be moved. I would only be grossed out because I would assume that person were sick (since that's the only time I blow my nose...) and I didn't want to get whatever they had. If it were somehow obvious that it were just allergies or something I think it would bother me less. That sounds really stupid, I know, lol, but I think it's not so much the snot itself that bugs me/grosses me out, but the fear of possibly getting sick.

ETA: b/c I never answered the question, haha. Do I think it's rude? Yes & no. I think if it's like a non-stop thing and you're sick and spreading germs, then yes, I think it would be courteous and polite of you to just go to the bathroom. If it's like once, maybe twice the entire meal and you aren't one of those super loud blowers... eh, not so rude.
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  #5  
May 4th, 2008, 04:49 PM
Just Nana's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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When I have a cold, I carry tissue or a hanky to blow my nose on. But the other day the sniffles took me by surprise when I was on a bike trip and I stopped for lunch at a grill pub in this town with apparently really high pollen counts. My nose started running uncontrollably, and I blew my nose on my paper napkin. It got me thinking: Is it wrong to use your napkin as a hanky? Is it MORE wrong if the napkin is cloth versus paper? And what’s more, is it bad manners to blow your nose at the table, even if you’re not using your napkin? —Gazoontite

Dear Gazoontite,

According to Peter Post, director of the Emily Post Institute and an allergy sufferer, you should leave the dinner table to blow your nose if possible. While some of the Post Institute’s advice seems removed from everyday life (like how much to tip your pool cleaner or golf caddie), in this area Post is right.

Blowing your nose in public is acceptable, if not very charming. But don’t do it at the table. When you blow your nose in other situations—on the subway, for instance—people can edge away. At the table they’re stuck next to you and your germs. Though they don’t have to see your snot, they may be able to hear it when you snuffle, and that can be almost as bad.

It might seem like a hassle to leave the table every time you have to blow your nose. But if you stay put, rest assured you’re grossing people out. According to Elizabeth Bernstein, a San Francisco writer, “If a guy blew his nose in his napkin on a date, it would be pretty much a deal-breaker.”

Even hay-fever sufferers shouldn’t inflict their nose-blowing on other diners. Tim Whitney, a grad student in Brattleboro, Vermont, who gets very stuffed up during hay-fever season, says: “I always excuse myself even if I have to slip away repeatedly.” He admits, though: “I might blow my nose at the table if it was just my wife and me.”

There is one exception to the no-nose-blowing rule: If your nose is just a little runny because, for example, you overdid the wasabi, it’s OK to turn and dab discreetly.

But you shouldn’t use your napkin. Firstly, it might be greasy, in which case it’s not very nice to rub it against your face. Secondly, people don’t usually discard their napkins midmeal, so you’ll most likely be stuck with the dirty thing on your lap. Worst of all is if you actually spread it on your lap again, hoping the people you’re dining with will forget you wiped your nose with it.

If there is a dispenser of paper serviettes, it’s OK to take one and use it as a tissue—provided you discard it or put it in your pocket afterward. Don’t leave it on the table. You should never make a server clean up your contaminated tissue, no matter how much you tip.

Table Manners appears every Wednesday. Have a Table Manners question? Email Helena.

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Its not just me that thinks its rude
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  #6  
May 4th, 2008, 06:20 PM
plan4fate's Avatar I may bend, but not break
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I think for someone who's sick (cold or allergies) it's ok to blow your nose once during a meal at the table. I suffer from spring allergies, and I get wicked colds. But I don't often blow my nose when there are people around, because it embarrasses me. It takes a lot to make me blow my nose around people (even my SO and co workers), no matter how sick I am. But like someone else said, I can blow it, or I can sit there and sniff loudly, which is more annoying/gross?

What does bother me tho, is the older men like my grandfather who whip out the handkerchief after a meal and blow loudly a few times. I don't see that as an "emergency blow" and could be done elsewhere.

I would rather someone get up and leave the room/go to the bathroom to blow their nose, but it's not always possible.

Now, a person who sits there and uses up all the napkins they've got at the table and looks for more, should have gone to the bathroom the first time

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  #7  
May 4th, 2008, 07:26 PM
whatever
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I am a clean/germ freak and I am pretty sure I would gag if someone blew their nose while I was eating? Not to mention the whole hand washing thing. I am a bit of a freak show about things like this, so I might be overly sensitive.

At my old gym there was this guy who would always jump on a machine next to me. He would hack and cough and swallow snot....it was the worst. So for me, it is not just in food places, I just don't like hearing people take care of their bodily functions. lol I am sure he could not help it, but I can't help that it grossed me out and the sound of him and the occasional cough "breeze" from his mouth would make me want to throw away my water bottle.
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  #8  
May 4th, 2008, 07:31 PM
short_n_swt's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Quote:
I am a clean/germ freak and I am pretty sure I would gag if someone blew their nose while I was eating? Not to mention the whole hand washing thing. I am a bit of a freak show about things like this, so I might be overly sensitive.

At my old gym there was this guy who would always jump on a machine next to me. He would hack and cough and swallow snot....it was the worst. So for me, it is not just in food places, I just don't like hearing people take care of their bodily functions. lol I am sure he could not help it, but I can't help that it grossed me out and the sound of him and the occasional cough "breeze" from his mouth would make me want to throw away my water bottle. [/b]

Couldn't help but laugh at 'cough breeze'
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  #9  
May 4th, 2008, 07:39 PM
Erin's First's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I don't think it's rude and I don't think I would be bothered by it. When you gotta blow, you gotta blow!
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  #10  
May 4th, 2008, 09:02 PM
Just Nana's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Dear Dr. Dave and Dr. Dee,

In a restaurant, my son blows his nose at the table instead of going to the restroom as I have requested. My husband doesn't think it's that big a deal, and won't side with me. Am I right or wrong?

Signed,

There He Blows

Dear There,

Tell your son that all the etiquette experts agree, NEVER BLOW YOUR NOSE IN A RESTAURANT! Always go to the restroom for nose blowing. If it's just the sniffles, he can use a tissue to dab his nose if there's only a slight drip.






Dining and Table Manner Basics





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  #11  
May 5th, 2008, 02:12 AM
acupofjoe's Avatar Proud mama of three!
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i think thats disgusting and if your sick you shouldnt be out anyways, especially at a family place where people bring there kids.
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  #12  
May 5th, 2008, 04:31 AM
SusieQ2's Avatar Jersey Girl
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I've always been taught that it isn't polite to blow your nose at the table. I know it kind of ruins my appetite when people do it. If I'm sick I don't go out to eat. If its allergies that are bothering me I either go to the bathroom to blow it or if I can't excuse myself from the table at the moment I'll just discreetly wipe it without actually blowing it.
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  #13  
May 5th, 2008, 05:08 AM
Tammyjh's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I probably wouldn't have noticed as I grew up with several family members who have seasonal allergies. If I'm having a hard day or week due to itchy watery eyes, coughing, and blowing my nose....I try to stay home as much as possible and eating out is the last place I want to be.

The girl did say she was sick so in that case, she probably shouldn't have gone out to eat. I wouldn't have said anything though.
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  #14  
May 5th, 2008, 07:49 AM
SusieQ2's Avatar Jersey Girl
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I have terrible allergies too and I either don't feel up to going out because of it or if I do go out I excuse myself to the bathroom. I don't want to have to subject everyone else at the table to my snow blowing!
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  #15  
May 5th, 2008, 08:36 AM
glasscandie's Avatar What I make is what I am
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I generally don't. I think it's gross when other people do (at their table in a restaurant) and rest assured that there is much appreciation from me when you remove yourself from my presence when you blow snot into a napkin. Yuck. The one and only time I blew my nose at a table in a restaurant was a few weeks ago - DH, DD and I took an early lunch at California Pizza Kitchen (mmm) and literally no one was sitting in our section or anywhere near us, and it would have been a giant pain to go to the restroom.

I wouldn't say something if someone did it, and obviously I'm not the strictest observer of my preference, as demonstrated above...but I think it's a private thing! Just like burping and farting...yuck.
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  #16  
May 5th, 2008, 09:09 AM
3Sapphires's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I don't think it is rude, if you try to keep it quiet and bother other people.

this reminds me of the time DH and I were on our honeymoon, we were on a cruise and it was late at night about 10:30-11pm, we went to the all night restaurant (the only things open were pizza, and icecream) but he wanted pizza so we went for a quick bite. and the place was empty save for 2 old bluehaird bitties.

We were going to eat on deck, not in the restaurant. On our way through my nose itched and I sneezed, I am the kind of person that if I do not blow my nose I will continue to sneeze until I do blow my nose, so I grabbed a napkin and continued to walk.

We were on the other side of the resaurant, I blew my nose and quietly as I could and one of those bluehairds stood up and yelled across the room.

"excuse me, we are trying to eat here"

I promptly turned around and said you are excused. I was so angry. perhaps the would rather me continue to sneeze all the way across the ship. ugg.
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  #17  
May 5th, 2008, 01:45 PM
Wendy's Avatar Super Mommy
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I work in a restaurant and this is one of my biggest pet peeves. I think it is very rude and disgusting. I think that people should excuse themselves from the table and goto the restroom to blow their nose. Not only does it sound awful, if they do it at the then they are not washing their hands afterwards. Then they are just passing more germs. It totally grosses me out!!!
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  #18  
May 5th, 2008, 02:36 PM
irishxrose
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I've seen far worse things at Dennys.

Anyway, it doesn't bother me. DF has severe allergies and sometimes he can't even make it out of the booth to blow his nose, let alone the bathroom 40 feet away. I've gotten used to it by now. Not a big deal to me.
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  #19  
May 5th, 2008, 04:15 PM
Marian_the_Librarian's Avatar Member
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If it's not bothering the people sitting at the table with the nose blower, I don't see why it should bother me, sitting at a totally different table. Frankly I think I'd prefer the person who blows their nose into a napkin than the person who coughs without covering their mouth, as long as they're not throwing the napkin at me once they're done.
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  #20  
May 6th, 2008, 11:44 PM
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I'll admit I'm sensitive and I wouldn't be able to eat but I'm the same person that if my son is chirping while I'm making eggs I won't eat them for at least a week.
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