Some relatives (a family of six) came over for Easter dinner and called in the morning to see what they could bring. I asked them to bring salad and a fruit plate. When they arrived, they only had salad with them. Don’t you think this is rude? There were a lot of them and I felt like we were a little short on food because I was counting on them to bring those dishes.
No, I don’t.
I think it’s rude to:
1.) Ask a family to bring two things to dinner. I’m sure they rightly assumed you were going to say, “Just bring yourselves! Can’t wait to see you!” or “Can you please stop and pick up a bag of ice? We’ve run out and I don’t have time to go get more.” When people ask what they can bring, unless you’re desperate or it’s a pot-luck, don’t ask for something complicated and essential to the dinner’s success. They want to bring a bottle of wine or some flowers and call it a day. You shouldn’t be asking for Baked Alaska and a lamb they skinned themselves.
2.) Not be prepared with enough food to feed your guests. If you can’t afford it, you shouldn’t be inviting that many people over for dinner without making it clear that it’s a full-participation event. If they called the morning of, you should have done your shopping and preparations already and been fine without whatever they were supposed to bring.
3.) Monitor the food intake of your dinner guests. I hope people don’t regularly do this. If they do, I’m embarrassed.