What Ever Happened to Social Etiquette Classes?

Back in the 1950’s they used to call it ‘Charm School’. Do you remember watching films of classes women used to take back in the day. Those classes women used to take ensured women knew how to act in public. You were taught to say please and thank you, tuck your skirt under you, sit straight with your knees together or with your skirt over the knee and legs crossed.

I recall that women weren’t the only one who had to take these classes. Men had to take too. I remember thinking at the time that I was certainly glad I didn’t have to sit through that in high school. I thought it was bad enough that I had to sit through the health class. I avoided the Home Economics course in my school like the plaque. “Who wants to be taught how to sew?”

More than twenty years have gone by at this point and I sometimes get a case of the shoulda, woulda, couldas’. I can hem a pair of pants…you just might not want to be seen in them after I’m done with them. I wasn’t one of the hopeless few that could burn water but I burned more than my fair share. So in today’s time of technology, social media, how-to video instruction, and whatever you flavor to savor cooking shows, I find that these are the tools that have replaced those classes. Thank goodness for the Martha Stewarts out there that teach you different ways to fold a dinner napkin and creating settings and themes for your dinner table.

While I experience momentary nostalgia for days gone by, I revel in the choices I have today to learn what I feel I must and leave the rest for another day.

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Patricia Royal
    May 20, 2011 @ 12:30:07

    There are some basic skills that I do wish I had learned. Not only more ‘feminine’ tasks but other skills too. Change a tire for one. My mom picked up a nail in her tire and neither of us knew how to change a tire. I don’t think I even have the stuff in my car to start changing a flat if I get one.


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