Media Archive »
1990s Media Appearances

Back to 1990s Media Appearances

Doing It Up the 'Right' Way

The Toronto Star
June 3, 1990
Tony Brady

Adeodata Czink believes in good manners. She's in the etiquette business.

Czink teaches the fine points of good behaviour and social graces not just to students but adults, too.

Czink guides her students through the rules of social and business life -- writing resumes, addressing people correctly -- even telephone etiquette. For instance, "Hi, is Suzy there?" is not so likely to get you a date as "Hello Mrs. Smith, how are you? May I please speak with Susan?" This will put the parent on your side," says Czink, the mother of Noemi, 13 and Emese, 12.

Hungarian-born Czink grew up in Sweden and studied piano and voice in Stockholm. She came to Canada in 1967 and studied music at the University of Toronto.

She recently put students at Toronto French School through their dining etiquette paces -- complete with formal table. Would-be hosts received implicit instructions: "A full plate of food is served from the right side of the guest, while an empty plate is removed from the left. However, if the guest is asked to help himself from a serving platter, it is offered from the left, since most people are right-handed.

"Most young people are unsure as to which knife and fork should be used in a formal dining situation. Simply start on the outside and use each utensil with the dish that is being served," she reassured the uneasy diners.

Michelle DiRocco, 17, a student, says she took Czink's course so she could feel more sure of herself. "I have already made use of things I learned here in my daily life. Just opening a door, sitting like a lady or shaking hands with someone is easier for me. I donít feel as awkward as I did before taking this course."

Has the expert on etiquette ever experienced an awkward moment when she 'forgot' her manners?

"I have on rare occasions put my foot in my mouth," admits Czink. "My best advice is to apologize and change the subject -- QUICKLY!