Если вы не читали знаменитый скетч Абботта и Костелло "Who's on First", то обязательно прочитайте. А в McSweeney's недавно была опубликован отличная обработка этой же темы, на материале названий фильмов. Очень смешно.
I believe current etiquette in London is as follows. I’ll check in my copy of Forbes when my man’s man comes back from making breakfast.
The host is expected to provide one silver backed mirror per eight guests. More is acceptable, but no more than one mirror per four guests.
The host should also provide a selection of ‘house’ snorters. Traditionally plain silver, though ‘novelty’ shapes (such as vacumn cleaners) are acceptable for less formal gatherings or those involving mostly young people. Snorters may optionally be stamped with the gentleman’s coat or blazon.
Guests will normally bring their own. ‘House’ snorters are provided for unexpected guests. A guest should try and bring a suitable snorter - best to stick with standard designs and simple motifs unless you know the other guests well, in which case a certain amount of freedom of expression can be permitted. They should also carry some marking (coat or crest or blazon) so guests can easily distinguish their own snorters as the evening progresses.
It is considered bad form for a guest to bring their own mirror.
The host should make available their own supply as a matter of course. Guests should also bring with them enough for themselves and a little extra.
When taking a line, it is bad form to ‘hoover’. That is, to try and clean up the line completely. It is good form to take the line in one, clean sweep, leaving detrius and ‘leavings’ around the side of the line. Over and evening this detrius is left to build up around the sides of the mirrors. These are normally left for the butler to disburse amongst the staff by way of a tip after the evening has concluded.
For any more information, I would point the interested reader towards Forbes, the chapter on after dinner entertainment. Also I think there was an article in ‘Gentleman’s Gentlemen’, November last year. I think my man still has a copy somewhere.
Update: MP3-файл с записью скетча Абботта и Костелло в их исполнении есть здесь. Очень быстрая речь; если вы не успеваете понять, держите текст перед собой.