A good friend just sent me this email (and, yes, names have been changed to protect the mortified): "Whenever Brian and I go out to dinner with another couple, my impulse is always to sit next to the girl, not next to Brian and across from the girl. It drives him insane. He thinks I’m oblivious to a well-known social rule. What do you think?"
Hmmm. Even though I'm one of those girls with a really weird amount of etiquette knowledge, this one had me stumped. My jumbo Emily Post book (a super-old edition that I often consult) is in the city right now, and I’m still upstate, so I did a bit of googling, and I found this post on Answerbag that seems to side with Brian.
I also dug up this advice from the Chicago Tribune on how two couples should ride together in a car: "Each lady sits next to the gentleman who is not her husband. The idea is not marital flirtation, because for that, each couple can stay home or go out alone. The idea is innocent sociability." Interesting, huh?
But my personal answer is that this is just another argument about control, which is totally normal-ish among married couples. My friendly advice? Just do it his way. I have frequently let Jack win in similar (and largely symbolic) bickering matches, my thinking being that it's not a big deal to me, but for some reason it is to him, so I'll let him have it. For that reason, I'm going to say that this one goes to "Brian."
Do you guys agree?
PS: Here is my comeback to the inevitable "What a super-dumb thing to fight about" comment. First of all, duh. Yep, I just duh'd you. And here's why: 98 percent of all couple fights are super-dumb. Take two adults, sprinkle them with a pinch of love, a dash of lust and a heaping spoonful of feelings-based chitchat, and what do you get? A great big super-dumb fight. If you've never had one, I seriously don't want to hear from you, because a) I don't believe you, and b) I totally don't believe you.
So really, what do you guys think?
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