I am almost through reading Miss Manners' Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior by Judith Martin, and it has been thoroughly enlightening. I now know exactly which rules to break if I ever wish to be considered a boor by the upper crust, or which to keep to be considered snobbish by everyone else. In honor of this excellent book, I've decided to share my favorite three excerpts.
As to my thoughts regarding this first exerpt, I personally cut my spaghetti and then eat it. I have no idea if that is correct or not, but at least it doesn't involve a spoon.
Dear Miss Manners:
Eating spaghetti is a two-handed exercise, and it does employ the use of a spoon. But consider first your proposed method, the fork perched like a flagpole on the plate, twirling the spaghetti around its base as though to drill a hole in the china. Ugh. Proper, perhaps, for a Roto-Rooter man. The correct way to eat spaghetti is with a fork and a soup spoon. The soup spoon is held in the right hand, the fork in the left. One cannot eat spaghetti properly without a soup spoon. Shame on you.
That many people use spoons to assist forks in eating spaghetti, Miss Manners is well aware. That correct spaghetti eating, with fork only, is not easy, Miss Manners also knows. (Why Miss Manners is suddenly writing her sentences backward, she does not know.) The most rewarding things in life require patience and diligence. In the civilized world, which includes the United States and Italy, it is incorrect to eat spaghetti with a spoon. The definition of "civilized" is a society that does not consider it correct to eat spaghetti with a spoon.