The Disappearing Spoon



Spoons have disappeared from restaurants. Has soup and coffee and iced tea disappeared? Did the dish run away with it?

My mother taught me early on how to properly set a table. That always included the hard working spoon. Fork on the left, knife then spoon on the right. How easy and universal is that? She loved spoons so much that she even made dessert “sporks” out of them: spoons with tines cut into the front to act as both


Walk into any restaurant nowadays and try to find a spoon. It is not at the table setting (setup). It’s not wrapped in the rolled napkin with the fork and knife. Watch the waiter’s expression when you ask for one.

I love iced coffee and iced tea. Waiters must assume I drink it without adding anything that needs a spoon (such as sweeteners or cream). In fact, even if I ask for it, I’ll commonly get the sugar and sweetener with no spoon. They bring spoons with hot coffee and tea- but only when they serve it. These little spoons don’t even work with iced tea and coffee; those drinks require a long spoon called an “iced tea” spoon. Try asking for one of those!

History reminds us that the spoon was the first true table utensil and predated the fork for thousands of years. What did they use before spoons? Cavemen likely stirred their hot chocolate with sticks- which of course don’t work very well at all.

Fast forward to modern coffee shops and the world of fast food. What are most Americans given to stir their coffee at Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts? Stupid little wooden sticks or worse, miniature black straws that are supposed to be STRAWS not SPOONS and which DON’T WORK AT ALL!

Funny how evolution works. Spoons have disappeared and we seem destined to stir everything with sticks again. They call this progress?