Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter what fork you use. Emily Post.
Some sources even say that good manners will keep us in better health than our ruder acquaintances. Maybe they will. Or maybe they will just make other people feel a bit more respected in our daily dealings. That’s fine too.
What are your biggest gripes with people’s manners? Here are a few complaints I’ve come across lately. Some are mine. Others are the product of eavesdropping, one of my favourite pastimes:
People who eavesdrop.
People in stores who order salesclerks around like mininons. What happened to please?
Salesclerks who conclude transactions with either ‘no worries’ or ‘no problem.’ The customer could have spent their money elsewhere. Why would there be a problem? How about a simple thank you?
Sidewalk hogs. The ones that think they own that four feet piece of pavement. They and their mob of friends aren’t going to budge an inch for anyone.
Aisle blockers. They shop the way they walk, several people wide with no awareness of anyone else on the planet. If they meet friends, they make aisles impassable.
Cell phones not turned off in theatres and cinemas.
People who ask for things by email and then can’t be bothered with a simple TY response when they get what they want.
Lane blockers. You put your indicator on because you’re about to change lanes. The driver behind you accelerates to close the gap.
Litterbugs. Their coffee cups, plastic bags, gum wrappers, cigarette butts festoon city streets.
That’s the starting list but I had to stop. The last one makes my usually excellent blood pressure. When did our planet become on giant rubbish bin?
Still, I’m hopeful. I like to imagine what might happen if everyone turned on their most considerate and thoughtful behaviour. Maybe we’d see these results:
Happier families and longer marriages.
A calmer society.
Less road rage.
The sun would shine every day. It would only rain between midnight and dawn.
Maybe not that last one but the rest aren’t beyond the realm of possibility.
What rude, self centered behaviour of others has tainted your day lately? How did you handle it?