John Calvin Coolidge Jr., the 30th U. S. President, once invited some of his friends from his home state, Vermont, to dine at the White House.
No one among the guests knew table manners except the ones they observed at their homes, so they decided to do exactly as the President did. The meal went without incident until coffee was served. The President poured his coffee into a saucer. They did the same. Some of them knew that in the 18th century European nobles did so to cool the hot coffee, which they then drank from the saucer. Some had also heard from older people that it was not uncommon for the older generation to do so in the U. S. as well. So, they thought that they were witnessing traditional table manners still being kept in the White House.
Then, to their consternation, the President leaned over and gave his coffee to his cat. His pouring coffee into a saucer had nothing to do with table manners. He did so simply to cool the coffee for the cat.
President Coolidge, in public, was known to be a skilled public speaker, but in private he was a man of so few words that he had been named “Silent Cal”. In fact, on one occasion, when his guests made a bet if they could get him to say more than three words during the party, he ended up saying only two words. Knowing this, the guests from Vermont kept eating in silence, imitating the President without asking him about his strange way of handling coffee, while the President kept his usual style of eating without speaking to anyone.