Who the hell does "formal entertaining" anymore?

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NIKON D70 - 1/500 sec, f5 at 18mm

I'm a little bit involved with a real estate web site. I'm pretty cynical about that whole industry. Being closer it for the last couple of months hasn't really changed my view. They provide pretty easy fodder for mocking the creative descriptions of the properties they have for sale.

Something I've been tripping over a lot has been the concept of Formal Entertaining.

For example, here is a quote from a property listing from today's testing.

Living areas have been designed to cater for both formal entertaining and for casual relaxation


Who the hell does formal entertaining these days? Probably people with sticks up their arse, but certainly no one else surely? The whole concept seems stupid. You end up with a chunk of the house that you don't actually really use unless you have other stick up the arse people over for dinner. Or entertaining.

I think the last time I was near any Formal Entertaining was easily 20 something years ago when we was living in Gisborne when we went round to the Hankeys for dinner. (Ma, you remember the Hankeys? The mob you got Bella the dog from).

The Prawn cocktail was first. Soggy prawns laying on limp lettuce all covered in some white goo sure to be harboring awful diseases. Next, straight out of the Womans Weekly recipe section, was something way too difficult for Mrs (I can't remember her first name) Hankey. Unspeakable things were done to the vegetables. But it all got eaten with silver cutlery and fabric napkins. Lastly was a desert that had been tortured beyond belief. It was both chewy and sloppy, if that's possible.

I'm glad none of our friends want to formally entertain us. I'm quite happy to even make my own tucker when we get together. Bloody hell, between us we have managed to generate at least 14 kids. Get them lot together and let me tell you, there ain't anything formal left!

The Photo

No I'm not going to tell you where I've been the last 3 weeks. Nor am I going to make excuses. I'm merely a typical part time photoblogger that occasionally loses all motivation and inspiration and talent. That's if there was any of those things there to begin with. I feel I'm back now though, albeit with a lower expectation of quality ;-)

UPDATE: Not long after posting this, I recalled me and Gabba went to my bosses house for dinner with another very nice couple. It was most pleasant and possibly a little formal. And there was no sticks up arses either...

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Posted: Friday, 21 July, 2006 19:31

Captured: 2006:06:11 13:28:41

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  • I have also been moving in the same circles (Real Estate) lately - taking on an exclusive property photography gig with a nationwide agency. While this agency is relatively progressive in the market, being all about marketing means you can hear the most amazing descriptions for the most innocuous things. I'm sure these agents walk around with thesauri to find the perfect embellishing adjective for "the back shed"...
    seriocomic - Friday, 21 July, 2006 22:20
  • Haha. I bet you are also trying to find the best possible angles to make that back shed look that the Taj Mahal too huh?
    Dave - Friday, 21 July, 2006 22:29
  • yes that meal was really memorable. You make it sound like you was dragged up not brung up properly. We did have linen napkins etc when you were little
    ma - Friday, 21 July, 2006 22:45
  • there is a difference between linen napkins at home and when out being formally entertained.
    Dave - Friday, 21 July, 2006 23:25
  • I suppose not all that many people even eat at the table these days, mostly just in front of the tv on their knees
    Ma - Saturday, 22 July, 2006 13:02
  • Love the photo....you realise now you'll never get an invitation to Antoines (Parnell) the food is unreal.....I will make it a personal challenge to teach Gabba how to serve your evening vegetables silver service style with a spoon and fork right-handedly....what peeves me about real estate people is not the formal room thingee it's that they think those without bidet's in every bathroom must obviously compromise their pesonal hygiene. My bet is that 99.3% of them don't have them either.
    Michele - Sunday, 23 July, 2006 15:02
  • beautiful shot, the contrasts are great :)
    James - Monday, 24 July, 2006 23:53

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