Because it is October, and Hallowe'en is soon upon us, and also because we had no ideas of our own, we are once again stealing from "Miss Manners' Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behaviour."
A reader has written Miss Manners thus:
"When the neighbourhood children come trick-or-treating, I know who most of them are. But sometimes there's no clue, and I wonder whether it's polite to ask 'Who are you?' to some little thing under a sheet."
Miss Manners replies:
"It is a faux pas to admit to recognizing anyone in a Hallowe'en costume. The polite way to act toward a trick-or-treater is to behave as if he or she were mugging you. Look scared and hand over the goods."
We would enjoy going trick-or-treating with Miss Manners.
Have sheet, will travel.