Well I have, and every single time you're at one of these 'get-togethers' there's always that one dude. You know the one right?
The walking vaccuum. Always has food in his hand, or a full plate. Sheesh dude! You'd think the guy just came FOR the food, not the social occasion. You'd think the guy starved himself for a week before he came!
Well......I'm not going to talk about that guy tonight. Psych!!!!
No, no, tonight I'm going to talk about another type of party foul. The person who walks away with the food that they brought to a get-together.
Yeah, that a*!hole!
See, if you bring something to an event, you're bringing it for the enjoyment of everyone. You didn't bring it for yourself. So it's definitely pretty rude to pack up the treat you brought at the end of the night, rather than leaving it with the host. I mean, really? How stingy are you, dude?
Here is the protocol for bringing a snack to a gathering (since you asked).
First, do everything you can not to put the snack on your grandmother's special-been-in-the-family-for-a-century-platter. This will make things so much simpler when you bid your farewells at the end of the evening. Do your high-fives, hugs, hand-shakes, and don't look back. You don't need that last cupcake, promise.
Secondly, when you're contemplating taking the remains home with you, stop for one hot second and think about the host, you greedy jerk! They opened their place to you all night, let you trash it, and keep them up way past their bedtime. The least you can do is leave behind that last slice of banana bread, ok?
There is one exception to this rule, and one only. You may bring the snack home with you, on occasion, if it wasn't opened at all in the course of the evening's proceedings. This, often, can be the result of several factors...
a) No one likes your taste in snacks, and probably wouldn't mind if you took it off their hands anyway. After all, maybe someone would appreciate it. It would be a waste to throw it out after you left.
b) You arrived too late in evening, and nobody is eating, or...
c) You brought a duplicate, or there's too much food already.
All of these are acceptable instances in which you can take, rather than leave, your contribution.
Now before you run off to your gatherings, armed with this empowering knowledge, think about this for a second...
I'd speculate that the reason why taking what you've brought is, in fact, an actual party foul, is because the act of bringing something to an event is a gesture of generosity.
Forget everything else, the reason you look like a stingy, piggy jerk by not leaving the leftovers is the same reason someone would seem like a jerk for giving a birthday present that they intend to use just as much as the person for which the gift was intended.
Can you imagine?
It'd be like me giving you a movie theater gift card, then suggesting that you use it to take me out to a movie, rather than letting you use it how you deem fit. The gift isn't a true gift anymore, it loses the sentiment behind it.
Taking your leftovers home with you, is like saying...hey, I paid seven bucks for this taco dip, and I'm going to be sure I get my money's worth out of it! It's absolutely ridiculous.
So the next time you get the twitch in your mitts to take the last of the Little Debbie's home with you, shove your grubby paws back in those pockets, thank your host, and get the hell out!