Dear Miss Manners: My wife and I have a new baby, and we also have a bit of a problem. Both grandmothers want to be called "Nana."
We've suggested that one could be "Nana Bea" and the other could be "Nana Joan," but neither will budge, and each wants to be called just Nana. One other bit of info: Nana Bea already has nine other grandkids, and Nana Joan has just this one.
Awww. That is adorable.
Oh no, not the names. Nor the silly fighting among grown-ups who should know better. Miss Manners finds it adorable that both grandmothers think that they will have a say in what they will be called once the baby is old enough to have an opinion about it.
But in order for you and your wife to remain neutral and unbiased (and that one of them has fewer grandchildren is not conducive to that argument), Miss Manners recommends that you tell them both that they can be “Nana.” Then have a good laugh together in a couple of years, when one becomes “Nana Far-Away,” and the other, “Nana Gets-Me-Toys.”
Dear Miss Manners: When I attended my best friend's sister-in-law's wedding, several years ago, it was during a time of unemployment, and I was not able to buy the new couple a gift.
Instead, knowing that they would be visiting my hometown during their honeymoon, I arranged to have a lovely bouquet of flowers placed in their hotel room on my behalf. I also offered to take them on a tour of a well-known tourist destination, as I had a pass and their tickets would be comped. It was my way of making up for what I felt was the faux pas of not getting them a traditional gift.
Several weeks later, my best friend phoned me. Apparently his sister-in-law and her husband felt very uncomfortable with my gift; my best friend noted that mine was the only present in their suite and that it was "weird" and "super awkward" of me to do that.
Needless to say, I was mortified that my altruistic gesture would be so horribly misinterpreted. While I assured my best friend of the best of my intentions (I fully explained the situation, my unemployment, etc.), and offered my profound apologies to the new couple, I have never fully forgotten this incident.
Looking back on it now, was I wrong to do such a thing? Should I have taken a different route altogether?
While normally Miss Manners would have flocked to your rescue to defend the sweet gift of flowers and a tour, she does admit that something is a little weird: the offer to join them on their travels.
In this age, when couples may live together for 10 years before getting married, honeymoons may well have lost their original romantic intent and meaning. But you rather explicitly pointing that out will probably not produce the gratitude for which you were hoping.