Keep Those Pinkies Down

My whole life, I saw people (let’s change that to “Americans”) playfully put their pinkies out when drinking tea from fine China. So classy.

“…Here’s your sign”

During the Prince Harry and Meghan wedding, I watched an interview between an American reporter and a British tea etiquette expert. The American reporter said “Oh I need to put my pinky out right?” Which promptly turned into the gentleman “Brit-splaining” (yes I just made that up) that pinkies out is not the proper way to drink tea.

The British tea etiquette expert mainly focused on the point that in the past drinking tea with pinkies out signified that a person had syphilis.

Separate research has given these explanations:

-It’s rude and connotes a higher class status. It comes from the idea that cultured people would eat their tea goodies with three fingers and commoners would hold the treats with all five fingers.

-Some claims it was for upper class to secretly point out potential suitors for sexual proposes.

-Another thought is to have less fingers on a hot cup

Additional thoughts of my own: Maybe someone’s hands are so big the pinky just pops out away from the tea cup. Maybe the pinky has a phobia of getting too close to hot liquid. Perhaps the pinky is so weak, if it touched the tea cup the cup would be in danger of falling.

Seriously, I don’t know where the trend of sticking your pinky out to be “fancy” came from. But ever since I saw that interview with the British tea etiquette expert I keep my pinky safely tucked in.

2 thoughts on “Keep Those Pinkies Down

  1. Erica, You are fun to read. I really, really like the photograph. Jim


    Liked by 1 person

  2. Maryanne Morgan April 4, 2020 — 6:30 pm

    Fabulous post! I’m with you. Keeping my pinkie in!
    Aunt Mary

    Liked by 1 person

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