We seem to be scraping the bottom of the barrel of the pandemic for arguments, right?
But yes, Miss Manners agrees with you: babies and animals should not be subjected to any kind of shame. Not only because they are unable to defend themselves, but because it sets an unpleasant precedent for their more cognitive counterparts.
Miss Manners suggests that you respond to your wife by saying, “Now, my dear, Wally is as handsome as any of us after nine months of our delicious cooking.”
Dear Miss Manners: I recently needed to contact my neighbors regarding a problem with our building. I know them all by name and I have their phone number, except for a couple. We greet each other when we meet in the lobby or in the elevators, but I didn’t have their contact details.
So last Saturday around 10 a.m., when I thought most people were going to get up, I went up to their floor and rang the doorbell. I waited for what seemed quite long to me, then rang the doorbell a second time. I waited a little longer, then, thinking that no one was home, I decided to leave.
As soon as I entered the elevator, I heard their door open and immediately came out to speak to them. The gentleman opened the door wide but was still in his pajamas. The lady was nowhere to be found, and there were signs of housekeeping in progress (a vacuum cleaner in the middle of the floor, etc.).
I apologized. He didn’t invite me. I explained why I needed to talk to them, we discussed the problem, exchanged phone numbers and left.
Shouldn’t I have rang the doorbell twice? How long do you wait after knocking / ringing before assuming no one is home? Was 10 a.m. on a Saturday too early?
How would Miss Manners have handled this situation?
Generally, two shots and after 10 hours work fine. You both came out unharmed. Or you could have left a note under the door.
For true neighborhood emergencies, however, the timing and intensity will likely be dictated by the urgency of the situation. Basement flooding has priority, Miss Manners assures you, over sugar-free cakes.