Friday, 23 April 2010

Acceptance of a truth?

Recently I gave my gorgeous Father-in-Law, as a gift for his 60th Birthday, a voucher for Tea For Two at a tres posh hotel in Edinburgh (I could be gracious and say 'we' but c'mon, who organizes all the gift giving in your house?) .  Lovely, I'm sure you agree and the very thought of a posh afternoon tea does sound delightful but I had a thought.......a thought that came to me as I was dabbing the coconut and cake crumbs from my plate with my I refined enough to go posh?  I want to dab and lick plates clean.  I like a cake fork, nice plates, stands and all the presentation paraphenalia that goes to showing and eating any kind of cake or pastry at it's best BUT do I need the privacy of my own home so I can scoff it in an Aunt Sally, unlady like fashion? Shoving in teeny sandwiches instead of delicate nibbling? I have eaten quite a lot of cakes and pasties at various establishments (I love that word but really you know I mean cafe's, coffee shops etc) and cannot remember if any dabbing and licking of plates has taken place out there in public ( I find it hard to imagine not!).  Is it the thought of being somewhere so posh that I would be so self aware that I was uncomfortable I was doing the 'wrong' thing or more likely become a bit rebellious and go for a dramatically defiant lick of a plate? Exaggerated and unnecessary (debatable?).
There are many more important dilemmas in life I am sure.
But still I ask am I refined enough to go posh and more importantly do I even want to be?  Is it still expected of us?  Isn't refinement a list of behaviours learned and dependent on whether your were taught that list or not?  Issues of Class, Etiquette and the 'done' thing?  It's not just eating cake and sandwiches though, is it? It's a venture laden with questions of worthiness or acts of pretense.  Acting like it doesn't matter and you don't care whether you 'belong'.........or is there even such a thing as 'belonging'......too much pondering either way.
Let's just call it a treat and have done with it.  Yet I know there is always a chance of feeling discomfited which says more about me than what I am partaking in.

Can you see how 'clean' that plate is?



  1. Sounds like a lovely present! I got a gift of a voucher for an afternoon tea at a 'posh' hotel from my brother. I may even lick the plate!!!

  2. I got to share in the same pressie as Kelly from my son (obviously it was joint)!! Can't wait to go!!! I won't lick the plate though!!!

  3. Oh how you post made me laugh!
    I am not sure I do 'posh' well or delicate when it comes to eating meals! It has never appealed to me to do fine dining in a posh restaurant. Why do I want 3 measly starter sizes for a 3 course meal? I want BIG plates! I have been to the Ritz for tea on several occasions as surprises and laughed as their sandwiches are the size of a teaspoon and we took bets on how many we could stuff in our gobs in one go! I am not a complete piggy I like to add, but food is food and when you get a good plate, why not lick it clean!!!!!! ha ha! Have a wonderful weekend! xxx

  4. Yes, I can see how clean that plate is, but I do think you could have scraped a bit more cake from the paper case!

    I am the same - I can't possibly leave any yummy cake crumbs lying around when I could eat them. My husband despairs of me.

  5. Victoria, I confess to having the same thought as I took the photo so scraped even more.....

  6. A friend of mine had her hen party starting off at the Dorchester for afternoon tea - I must confess I was a bit worried I wouldn't be posh enough, especially as I was post baby and a bit round and squishy (still am a bit - does it ever go?) anyway - everyone somehow fitted in, they sat a little straighter, ate a little daintier and drank champagne elegantly instead of downing shots.

    Pretending to be posh for the day was marvelous, I only wish every day was as elegant... I think we all would have liked to move in.

    At home is a different matter though, dabbing and scraping is essential! Have a great weekend ladies x

  7. I like what Colette wrote there, about pretending to be Posh for the day...I think I can do that, but in reality Im a bit of an urchin and I eat things like cake in a hearty manner which involves going into raptures, rather large fork-fulls and much "Mmmmmmm-ing" and licking of lips! Crumbs are then hoovered up on a licked finger...oh the shame of my now public table manners!! What on earth must you think of me!?!(ha ha)

    Julia x x x

  8. Ladies, we could start Dabbers United made up of us finger and tongue crumb dabbers. We could have a maifesto and slogan. Meetings with tea and cake where we feel free to eat in which ever manner we see fit. No longer feeling ashamed of our dabbing affliction but proud of our unrefined ways. Some of the group may split off becoming the hardcore fringe who storm posh hotels and tea rooms and demand the right to dab where, when and as often as they choose. Protesting in arranged 'sit-ins' (what better venues??) and singing political songs.
    Ahh........what do you think?

  9. I booked (and ate) "Tea At The Ritz" a few years ago and loved it. Loved the ceremony, the people watching, the whole caboodle... and then loved going into the office and answering "actually, I had tea at the Ritz" when asked if I had done anything nice at the weekend. (I was the cleaner!!! :O))))))

  10. Just think how posh Nigella is and I have definately seen her licking and dabbing. Next time I'm in a posh tea shop I shall imagine I am Nigella and (very politely )dab away! I think the really posh don't worry about these things... we'll have to ask the Duchess of Tea...
    Louise xx


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