Should we start a support group?

My mother told me it was rude to read at the table.

The reasons for that are obvious when other people are present. We might not all be deipnosophists but we ought to at least try to carry out a conversation with our tablemates.

But I am not convinced by the arguments against reading while eating when dining alone.

There is a risk that the food might not end up where it’s intended and cause a mess on the reading matter, the diner or table but practice makes perfect (even with spaghetti).

There is also the risk that one who has to read while eating might then feel compelled to eat while reading which could lead to unhealthy consumption. But a good book is a wonderful distraction to assist with resisting the temptation to overindulgence of the culinary kind.

There is also the argument that the diner ought to savour the dinner and not be distracted from taste and texture by texts. That is the most compelling, but if I can multi-task I can also multi-taste, feeding mind and body at a single sitting.

The reading eater doth protest too much youthinks?

Maybe, but at least I’m not alone.  Dim Post can’t eat without distraction either.

Should we start a support group or just admit that eating and reading are two of life’s great pleasure and, good manners or not, combining the two enhances both?

8 Responses to Should we start a support group?

  1. ZenTiger says:

    Reading and eating is a great combination – physical and mental nourishment at the same time – efficiency, effectiveness and enjoyment.


  2. robertguyton says:

    Yeah! Readers digest!


  3. homepaddock says:

    Zen you get acknowledgement for alliteration and Robert you get a a grin for word play of the week.


  4. Deborah says:

    Weekend lunchtimes are very quiet at our place, because this is the one time of the week when the children have permission to read at the table. This started when we were trying to help our younger daughters to catch the reading bug, and now it has become an indispensable part of our weekend rituals.

    But not at dinner – that’s family time – and not when we have guests.


  5. homepaddock says:

    Deborah – that’s a wonderful way to encourage reading and give busy parents an opportunity for book time too.


  6. Eating and reading are a perfect combo. I work from home and read the Spectator and Economist over lunch through the week. Spillage of pasta sauce (or leftover gai pad med mamuang) is not a problem – they’re only magazines.


  7. stef says:

    I tend to read when eating when I am dining alone (which 6 months of backpacking entailed a lot of meals alone). A book in that case is the perfect dining companion.


  8. Fredinthegrass says:

    For your digestions sake try to avoid thrillers!
    Otherwise you may as well be watching the news – which should be an absolute no-no while eating.
    Love the thought of a quiet mealtime as the grandies read!!!


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