Article posted Tuesday, June 19, 2012 10:39am

Dear Miss Manners,

How do you politely tell someone that their zipper is down? It seems like such an embarrassing situation for everyone involved – a little advice would be great.

Barn Door Banter

Sturgeon Bay, WI

Dear Barn Door Banter,

The best way to phrase it would be something like, “You may want to check your zipper.” You should be low key about it and not make a fuss. Let them have the option of laughing it off or moving on to a new topic quickly. Even though it might seem easier for them to not mention it, wouldn’t you want to know if you were in the same situation? Most people may be a little embarrassed, but not as embarrassed as they would be if the situation wasn’t corrected for hours. If you are in a group situation, there might be a friend who is closer to the “afflicted” who will probably address it before you would need to.

This is a good reminder for everyone to make sure that they are zipped up before they head out the door. It will save the rest of us from having to tackle the awkward topic.

Good luck,

Mary Pat