Communal eating

Sharing is not caring: Just say no to small plates

Sharing is not caring: Just say no to small plates

“We don’t share,” my friend Ali said. Our server’s eyebrows arched into tight half moons as she surveyed the five of us seated around the communal table at the hot, tapas-style seafood restaurant. She glanced back at Ali as though she was waiting for the punch line, for Ali to laugh and say, “Gotcha! Bring us five forks and one of everything, please!” But she said nothing, her face poised in a hardened expression. A few uncomfortable beats later, our server tried again.

“We recommend sharing because of the timing. Since the dishes are small plates they will come out at different times from the kitchen.” But Ali held strong.

“We’re all good friends and we don’t need to be polite anymore,” she explained with a firm smile. “We don’t like sharing.”