(Closed) Cover your plate

posted 5 years ago in Reception
Post # 136
Member
1828 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2014

I never heard of it specifically, but it was a general nicety I’ve always subscribed to. Of course, I also take into account if there are significant travel costs, etc because I am in no way made of money.

I feel like what it comes down to is being a good guest, just as you assume the host will be a good host. If they are taking the time and money to plan for me to be wined and dined at their affair, I’m not going to turn around and give a shitty gift to show my appreciation. To me, it is a circle of politeness.

Post # 137
Member
2691 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

pharmy:  +100 agreed!

A lot of bees are advocates for being advocates for being good hosts, having an open bar etc.. what about being a good guest as well?

 

Post # 138
Member
6292 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2014

MeandMyLouboutins:  Exactly! If I couldn’t afford/didn’t want to cover my plate, I would decline the invitation. As is often said on here, and invitation isn’t a summons; so if you don’t want to cover your plate, you can always not go. 

As I said the only exception to this would be if it were one of my best friends and I genuinely couldn’t afford it. But I would still give as much as I could, and as soon as I DID have money, I’d make it up to them. And my best friends would understand. But I would only feel OK doing that in that situation, and even then I’d be embarrassed. I mean, I’m not rolling in money and one of my best friends is getting married in Australia in a couple years so flights alone will cost me £600+…and you know what? I still intend to cover my plate, even if that means I have to go without a couple things in the run up. 

Post # 139
Member
12224 posts
Sugar Beekeeper

canadajane:   The underlying concept of hospitality is surprisingly universal throughout the civilized world.   Etiquette is about treating people the right way and can often be at odds with tradition and custom.  What else is hospitality but  “treating people the right way?” 

Traditions can and do change with the times. Some, like the parents choosing the groom and IMO, cover the plate, should disappear sooner rather than later. 

Post # 140
Member
1228 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

weddingmaven:  “the civilized world.”

WOW.  Just freaking wow.  Is this really 2014? 

Post # 141
Member
1649 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2000

I didn’t read any of the responses, but covering your plate is a very common guideline from the Northeast.  I’m also Chinese, so I’ve ALWAYS been gifted cash- for bdays, graduations, Christmas, Thanksgiving, anytime I saw my grandparents, etc, so I did expect cash from my family (because that’s what’s always done) and I was right.  Gifts ranged from $500-1500+ on my side of the family, all cash, 0 boxed gifts, and from my husband’s (Caucasian from the Northeast) side cash gifts around $150 and some boxed gifts.  I think his side followed the CYP more literally than my side of the family. 

It’s actually very common for Asian couples to actually MAKE money from their wedding due to all the cash that’s given. 

Post # 142
Member
2691 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

Diamondgurl:  It’s true though! Culturally some people make money off of their nuptuals… I went to a Greek weeding and my friend made 40,000 – he ended up putting down a downpayment for a house with it and that’s customary in their circle…

Unfortunately in my culture we don’t have the same mentality… lol.. I doubt i will get back a quarter of my wedding cost, however, me and my Fiance are planning like we are not going to get a penny in gifts so we are willing to spend and not get back what we have budgeted!

Post # 143
Member
1228 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

This genuinely isn’t directed to any person in particular, but the ethnocentrism throughout all 10 pages is just making my blood boil. 

To assume that your ways are the right ways and that people in other countries are doing it wrong (and wrong if they have the audacity to bring their ways to the good ol’ USA) is incredibly condesncending, in poor taste, and yes, I will say it, racist.  It’s racist.  The attittude is racist.  

Post # 144
Member
525 posts
Busy bee

MeandMyLouboutins:  That’s what I’ve been trying to say. 

Some bees have a really skewed sense of what CYP means and are insinuating those who believe in it are doing something wrong. I hate to get riled up, but some bees a few posts back said that a good host does not expect CYP. I am an excellent host and don’t expect anything but as an excellent, good mannered guest, I’m sure as hell going to act like one and not eat, drink and dance for free.

One of DH’s aunt only gave us a card. Fine. For five people. Fine. THEN, she walked out with a bottle of bourbon. Sigh, fine! THEN, we find out she left early because she was hosting her own pparty.So show up, eat, drink, steal our booze and don’t even give us SOME SORT of gift but you can afford to throw your own party???Sorry, but I’d rather fall into the CYP category, not the category of this rude guest.

  • This reply was modified 5 years, 3 months ago by  GreenBayBee.
Post # 145
Member
6292 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2014

canadajane:  I’ve noticed this attitude a lot on these boards unfortunately; it seems to crop up with most etiquette-related, from no kids weddings to open vs cash bars etc, and I find it pretty appalling. I also find it pretty laughable as it demonstrates a complete lack of what etiquette actually is and that (shock horror!) it isn’t universal. 

Post # 146
Member
2691 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

canadajane:  I will say it sounds condescending if anything…

not so sure about racist though lol… It may be Nationality difference but race.. umm…

Post # 147
Member
525 posts
Busy bee

I think some people are just trying to justify the fact that they’re cheap!

Post # 147
Member
9595 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

MeandMyLouboutins:  I think you can be a good guest and not “cover your plate”. A meaningful handmade gift, or something off the registry, or some other thoughtful gift IS being a gracious guest. The dollar amount is not what matters which is why I think CYP model… is not optimal. But yes, I am coming a from mentioning/talking about/expecting/gifting money is tacky culture.

If a friend declined because they could not cover their plate as barbie86:  said… I would be so hurt, confused and offended. I invited you because I wanted you there to celebrate- not to milk you like a cash cow.

 

Post # 149
Member
1228 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

MeandMyLouboutins:  I respect that you see it differently, but to me, it really recalls “The White Man’s Burden”.  It’s not the job of “real” Americans or Canadians to educate people with ancestors from Korea, China, Pakistan, Cuba, Jamaica, Argentina, Nigeria or whatever, the “true” ways of being polite.      

(Edit: To be more clear, if white people didn’t have a long history of trying to educate people of other races, I probably would see this as just a clash of nationalities).  

Post # 150
Member
1152 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

There are so many other factors that have to play into it.  Other expenses associated with the wedding and how close you are to the couple especially (for me).

We went to a wedding in Florida (from the DC area) a few years ago that my Fiance was the best man in – the flight cost us about $600-650 round trip, hotel cost us about $300-400, we had to go out for breakfast/lunch/dinner every day we were there except for the day of the wedding (that had to have totaled another $300), renting a car cost $250ish…etc etc.  But since we’re close with them, their gift still ended up being about $150 total (their reception wasn’t more than $20/plate).

And then compare that to a wedding we were invited to very last minute a couple years ago.  All we had to pay for was the gas to get out there and the hotel (about $150 all told) but since we weren’t close to the couple and didn’t even expect an invite we didn’t budget for it and then only had 2 weeks to scramble to get things together (including someone to watch our dog).  Their gift consisted of a nice card, small item off their registry, and a homemade crocheted afghan to match their living room scheme.

For what it’s worth, we live in the DC area and most of our friends are transplants from all over the country too (so a wide variety of backgrounds) and when we throw parties we don’t expect people to bring anything, ever.  It’s not uncommon for someone to show up to something we throw without anything at all – because we chose to host them and don’t expect it.

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