Don't Be a Monster! 3 Things Good People Do for Friendsgiving Cleanup.

Don't Be a Monster! 3 Things Good People Do for Friendsgiving Cleanup.

(Image credit: Erin Wengrovius)

Friendsgiving is the best! All the delicious food and festivities of regular Thanksgiving — with more wine, better music, and fewer questions about why you're still single!

If you're a Friendsgiving guest, you already know to bring at least one side and a bottle of wine. But don't stop there: The best guests are ones who don't just show up, eat, and leave, but make an effort to help with cleanup so your host isn't stuck doing hours of work later. Here are three things all good, non-monstery people do for Friendsgiving cleanup.

1. Clear the table.

Your mom's probably been drilling this into your head for decades, and it holds true now: Clear your plate! Bring it to the kitchen, scrape off any debris, and stack it in the sink, on the counter, or in the dishwasher. Then once you've taken care of yourself, survey the table to see what's left: Grab the salt and pepper and put it away, bring the big serving pieces into the kitchen so it's easy to pack up appetizers, put those empty bottles of wine in the recycling, and start collecting emptied drinkware. Even if your host is doing the actual cleaning of the items, making the trip from the table to the kitchen will save her a big chunk of time.

2. Tidy the living room.

Most people don't walk straight through the front door and sit at the table. You take off shoes and toss them toward the door. You lounge around, have a cocktail, crush the couch cushions, and move all the strategically placed decorative pillows. You nibble on cheese and crackers and leave crumbs and coasters on the coffee table. As other guests leave, walk around the secondary spaces and straighten them up to how they were when you got there.

3. Ask what you can do.

Some hosts are very particular about how they want their dishwasher loaded, glasses washed, or leftovers packed up. I respect that; I'm one of them. So the best thing to do is ask! Even better than "Do you need anything?" (well no, not technically), "What can I do?" is a neutral and specific way to ask your host for a single task. If you get a blank stare (because sometimes it's hard to see what can be done when there's so much to do!) offer to dry the dishes, sweep the floor, run a hand vacuum under the sofa, or just pour your host a glass of wine and keep her company while she labels the leftovers.

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