Michael Jackson's Funeral and Relationship Jewelry, Vol. 8, Issue 16

Much has already been said about last week's funeral of Michael Jackson, so Etiquetteer will confine himself only to the following observations:

  • The sisters of the deceased, Janet and LaToya Jackson, looked like real ladies in their mourning. The best mourning is severely plain black, which they both achieved with respect for the deceased and elegance for their figures. Etiquetteer was particularly grateful that they both wore hats; it's a pity that it takes a funeral for some ladies to find a good hat. One can only wish that the tens of thousands of mourners who won tickets to the memorial service had dressed with equal respect.
  • The pallbearers, the brothers of the deceased, all wore one glove to memorialize the deceased's most famous accessory. Some declare this was a vulgar or gimmicky gesture, but Etiquetteer finds it a Perfectly Proper and loving, albeit atypical, tribute. 



Dear Etiquetteer:
I am in a serious relationship, and my boyfriend recently suggested that I start looking at rings. Thrilling! However, because of my occupation, I rarely can wear jewelry on my hands. I certainly wouldn't wear something so precious as an engagement ring when it could so easily be lost or damaged. He is asking for my input; should I suggest something other than a ring? I am at a loss. Please help.
Dear Bare Hands:
For millennia rings have been the traditional jewel to signify a relationship. Now many people find them useful to prevent themselves looking like fools flirting with people already in relationships. Not everyone is made to wear rings, and some have particularly bad luck in hanging on to rings. Indeed, Etiquetter himself has lost three family rings! So you have Etiquetteer's sympathy in your quest for meanginful but safe jewelry to acknowledge your relationship. 
Since in your case a ring is an occupational hazard, Etiquetteer would like to suggest a small necklace or chain, from which you could hang a ring (if that symbol is important to your boyfriend) or maybe a small pendant. The pendant (or even the chain) could have a meaningful inscription. The Duke of Windsor memorably gave his Duchess (who rapaciously received stunning jewels from him on many occasions) a show-stopping sapphire bracelet on the morning of their wedding inscribed "For our contract" with the date. 
Allow Etiquetteer to wish you and your beau a happy adventure as you consider your own personal symbols!
Your own etiquette queries are always welcome at queries_at_etiquetteer_dot_com!