I have so many questions. So. Many. Questions. Which means it's time to enlist the wisdom of the internet.
First, one for the gardeners. It's the end of June. That's roughly equivalent to the end of December for Northern Hemisphere types, I guess. It's definitely winter. We've had a few frosts. We use the heating most nights. You have to wear a coat and scarf outside. The ski season is about to start. I have a tomato plant in a pot on the balcony that I gave up on around two months ago when winter was starting. We pretty much stopped watering it. But it's still producing flowers and tomatoes. And they are still ripening. I guess my only question here is WTF? And, when will this madness stop???
Secondly, I am going to a conference next weekend, and a colleague whose mother lives in that city has said her mother is happy for me to stay with her as well. I have never met the mother before. I will be staying two nights, and will hardly be there except to sleep. What is a nice little gift I can give as a thank you? My usual standbys are chocolates or a bottle of local wine, but my colleague says her mother is on a diet and doesn't drink.
Finally, Geekman and I often disagree on what is socially appropriate. Last night at a party, he polled all his friends, who he claimed agreed with him. So since I have no friends, I'm going to poll the WHOLE INTERNET and see if you all agree with me. (If you don't, you are henceforth banned from this blog.) Of the following list of things we have disagreed on the acceptability of lately, which do you think are okay, and which do you consider inappropriate?
- Bringing a half-empty bottle of wine to a party
- Asking to borrow someone else's nail scissors to fix a hangnail. (And does your judgment here change if the person is a complete stranger? If the nail is bleeding?)
- Helping yourself to food from the fridge in the middle of the night when staying with people you've only just met
- Cutting and eating a slice of a cake that hasn't been cut yet, without asking first
- Commenting on a woman's outfit (either favorably or neutrally, e.g. "I haven't seen you wear those trousers before"), when you are her male colleague. And what about if you are faculty and she is a student?