It is unbelievable to me that a person can attend a dinner party sick. This is the second time over the holidays when I have been seated next to someone with a full-out, blown-out cold or perhaps flu.
It was as though they just came down with the flu when they sat next down to me. Nose running, coughing into their hands, sneezing into the sleeve of their elbow, using their napkin as a tissue. The woman last night was so sick she spilled a full glass of red wine down the front of my jacket, shirt, tie and trousers. Today she texted to tell me she would pay for the dry cleaning. I don’t want to have contact with someone like her again. Don’t these people understand how common colds and flu colds are transmitted?
What do you do when you’re stuck with someone who is quite obviously really sick and should be home in bed? If you’re sick, do us all a favor and stay home.
–Furious, Washington DC
My sympathy to you who may come down with an airborne cold or flu, and to the two guests who were sick. Give at least one of them the benefit of the doubt that their cold medicine was wearing off when they sat down to dinner. Next time, suggest that the person lie down in another room until they feel better and say that you’ll check on them after dinner to see if they need a ride home.
As to the dry cleaning bill. She offered to pay. Have the entire suit and tie dry-cleaned and the shirt laundered. Then send her the bill with a stamped self-addressed envelope for her to return with your check inside.
There is nothing to do at a social occasion, but be compassionate toward the person feeling ill.
Don’t find yourself in a similar situation, such as your sick dinner partners did — making everyone in close proximity as miserable as you are.
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Accepting A Compliment