Was our silver-and-china dinner offensive?


DEAR MISS MANNERS: Though our family was not wealthy, I inherited Mom’s china, silver, crystal and linens, and I love using them. They remind me of her, and it’s fun to set the table and cook a big meal.

Judith Martin 

Our street has many couples of our age and era, and dinners seemed like a good way to get to know our new neighbors. We’ve had many neighbors over for dinners, but none have reciprocated, except one who included us in a big neighborhood potluck.

Do people no longer use their dining rooms? Is their mothers’ china only for Thanksgiving and Christmas? Are sit-down dinners out of fashion, and backyard potlucks with football on TV all that’s acceptable?