Here’s the thing: I’ve been a parent for almost a decade now. I have produced four human beings whom, on the whole, have pretty good manners. They say “please” and “thank you,” they help around the house, they clean their rooms when I ask, and they are well-behaved in public.
But when it comes to mealtimes? They are absolute animals.
They slurp and eat corn with their fingers. They chomp and chew with their mouths open. They stand on their chairs and demand food by pointing their forks at each other, grunting in some sort of secret language only they understand.
Meal after meal, day after day, my husband and I instruct them to sit down, use your utensils, ask to pass the dish, remember your manners, SIT BACK DOWN FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THIS IS GOOD. And the single most irksome behavior at the table from my beloved offspring is a behavior that I still, to this day, can not understand. Every mealtime, without fail, morning, noon and night, my children insist on sitting sideways in their chairs.