Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >
Jan 25, 2011 12:31 PM

Is it rude to comment on other people's food?

I bring my meals to campus every day, and I usually pack the same things: oatmeal for breakfast and some combination of grains and legumes (like barley and black beans) with vegetables for lunch. Without fail, someone will comment on what I'm eating. Usually people ask what it is, which seems strange to me, since I'd say it was fairly obvious. At first it didn't bother me, but when it started happening pretty much every day, it didn't seem like polite interest anymore.

I guess it makes me feel a bit awkward and uncomfortable when people do this. No one comments on the bagels and pastries other people bring in, but will gawk at oatmeal and watch me eat it. It just seems rude! Am I just overreacting?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I have no idea what lies in the hearts of those who are asking you about your food, but I am most inclined to ask people about what they're eating when it looks interesting to me, i.e., when I'm thinking, "I wish I'd brought that instead of buying this."

    1. Yes, people will be people...not a common sight to see someone eating beans and veggies, whereas someone munching a sandwich or a bagel is old hat. I'd ask too, wondering if a diet like that keeps you satisfied, is it really healthy, etc. They're just curious. They do the same thing in my break room if a lunch doesn't come from a box, can, or takeout

      1. I'm not saying you shouldn't feel the way you do. I haven't witnessed the way these people behave, but I do have a question... Have you thought about taking along some plastic spoons and offering people a bite? You could end up making some great friends. '-)

        1. I only find it rude when people make actual rude comments. Oh, and they do!

          "What's that?"
          "Tofu parmesan and pasta"
          "TOFU PARMESAN? EW"

          This was an exchange I had with a mid-level manager at my last job.

          1. It doesn't sound rude, they are just curious. Gawking or making derogatory remarks no doubt is rude.