19 May 2011
more participants at Jenny Matlock's Alphabet Thursday
In the European countries it is the use to hold the fork in the left and the knife in the right hand during the whole meal. Once a bite-sized piece of food has been cut, you eat it. You are not allowed to "carve up" multiple pieces and then munch them. You also have to empty your plate first before you can take another portion.
You eat using both hands, the arms should be held against your body and it is very impolite to lay your ellbows on the table hang your head over (or almost in) the plate and gobble down the food. You should eat and not munch and smack when chewing your food or slurp while eating your soup and do not point to somebody or something with your spoon or fork while talking with a full mouth.
Eating manners are very important because they show if you have had a good education or not and "where you come from" as posh people would say.
Of course you have to use your napkin to keep your mouth clean and not to blow your nose.
In the USA it's completely different, the fork is shifted between the left and right hands and used much like a spoon (tines up), The meat cut into bite sized pieces and the knife is then set down, the fork transferred from the left hand to the right. "The American style is almost completely unknown and considered improper in other countries" (sorry for my American friends, I copied this from Wikipedia). But by own experience I also was very surprised to see how people ate at home or in restaurants, when travelling through the States or living with my aunt in Madison. Of course after a while you get used to and then you do what you want ! At least I did.
But to my knowledge in both ways of eating burping, coughing, yawning, sneezing, or fart at table is not well seen.
The eating way in Asia, and Africa is again completely different, so if you want to know Mr. Google will help you.
Learning to eat properly is a difficult task
herewith demonstrated by my 6 months old Grandson Toby, with his first carrot meal !