11 Points

11 Most Taboo Subjects For Polite Dinner Parties
written by Sam Greenspan

Having a dinner party is a lot of work. Last time we threw one it was exhausting. I had to give suggestions to my girlfriend on who we should invite, come up with ideas of foods she could make and putting on pants for four hours.

But seriously, folks!

I've got the results here of a recent-ish survey on topics that are taboo at polite dinner parties. Because if you're going to put in all the effort on a dinner party you shouldn't offend your guests so badly they don't invite you to their party one day.

  1. The original awkward dinner party.
    Religion (7%). It's interesting that religion finished in last place because on a list of controversial topics because, ya know, people kill each other over it daily. But, apparently, once you put on a nice shirt and swing by a store to grab a bottle of not-the-cheapest wine, it significantly softens the blow on religion.

  2. Serious illness (9%). Apparently, if there's a lull in the conversation and you break it with, "So, anyone here got cancer?" you've got a 10 in 11 chance no one's gonna be offended.

  3. Politics (13%). Political discussions at dinner parties were certainly in the news this week. For everyone reading this in the future, I'm referencing the GREATEST SCANDAL OF ALL TIME (of this week) in the 2012 presidential election. Also, how is the future? What ended up happening on Breaking Bad?


  4. 1994.
    Value of homes (16%). I'm definitely guilty of this one. I don't understand how it can be off limits when I could find it out by Googling your address. Anything that easily Googleable can't be taboo. Is it also taboo to ask how many furlongs are in a hectare or how what year All-4-One released I Swear?

  5. Relationship details (18%). Having spent three years going to dinner parties and being asked within minutes "So when are you getting maaaaaried?" I can attest that no one cares whether or not this is taboo.

  6. Family planning (19%). I'm not sure if this means "So when are you having a baaaaaaby?" or "Is pulling out still working for you?" Either way, if you try to make this the conversation topic, the odds of it failing are about one-in-five. You could say it's the rhythm method of dinner party topics.

  7. Salary (25%). Three out of four people are totally fine with telling you how much money they make? That's way higher than I would've guessed. Time to start asking EVERYBODY.


  8. We're strapped for cash.
    State of finances (28%). I can't really see this coming up that often unless you get into a "Who's got the most debt" penis measuring contest. Although I guess the lowest number would win, unlike any real penis measuring contest.

  9. An infidelity (31%). There aren't many venues where it's wise to bring up someone's infidelity. Other than an appearance on Maury or Cheaters, a contentious divorce hearing, or you're 100 percent convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that you're the good guy and he's the bad guy in the romantic comedy of life and you're the one who should end up with Drew Barrymore.

  10. Sex life (32%). Is it that you don't want to discuss your most intimate details... or don't want to discuss other people's intimate details when you're eating salmon or beef tenderloin?

  11. Nothing is off limits (39%). Analingius it is.


This post was originally published on Thursday, September 20, 2012 at 11:00:00 AM under the category Food & Drink.

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