George Wolff, of St. Pete Beach, Florida, writes, "Can you settle a dispute for me? My wife, who is quite strict about grammar, is not prepared to accept my criticism of her use of the word tabled. Recently she said that an issue was tabled in the course of a meeting. To me, that meant it was put on the table for discussion. She insists the verb table means 'to put aside for another time.' If the issue had been put aside, wouldn't it have been shelved? In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit that I am a Canadian, fairly recently transplanted to the United States."
It's easy, isn't it, to picture someone whose arms are laden with shopping bags coming home, setting the bags down on the hall or kitchen table, and immediately doing something with their contents, such as putting them away or starting to cook with them. This in the physical world is like tabling, the way you think of it, in the abstract realm of meetings. But it's also easy to imagine that the person with the shopping bags might hear the phone ring, put the bags down to take the call, and forget about them for a good long while. This is the way your wife thinks of tabling.
Both meanings are given in the Oxford English Dictionary. In fact, curiously, the OED considers them to be versions of the same meaning of the verb, out of eleven possible meanings, including one specific to carpentry, one to sail-making, and one to gunnery. The relevant definition is "to lay (an appeal, proposal, resolution, bill, etc.) on the table of a deliberative or legislative assembly; hence, to bring forward or submit for discussion or consideration. In U.S. Pol[itics], to lay on the table as a way of postponing indefinitely; to shelve." Thus your wife's usage is beyond reproach. As for you, having tabled this matter in your sense of the word, perhaps you'd now be willing to table it in hers?