Monday, February 8, 2010

Where Are Your Manners?

Being considerate of others will take your children further in life than any college degree. Marian Wright Edelma

What happened to the art of being considerate to other people? I think I'm fairly tolerant but lately my patience has worn thin. If you're reading this, I should warn you that you may be offended by my opinions. But it's my blog. I don't write to please every one.

People have become quite rude. Gone are the days when writing a thank you note was not only appreciated, but expected. The simple gesture of holding open the door for some one has gone the way of the dinosaur - extinct. Saying thank you and please is almost non-existent. Manners and etiquette? Gone with the wind.

My grandmother taught me many valuable lessons but the one that stays with me every day is, What goes around comes around. From an early age she preached about values and making good choices. She was a wise woman and I respected her opinion more than anyone else. She passed away a few years ago at the age of 102 but I still hear her ask, "Did you remember to send your mother a birthday card?"

When someone cut in front of me at the grocery store - in the line that has a sign "15 items or less - with a cart that held at least 50 items, I didn't say anything. Why? Because it wasn't important enough to make an asshole of myself. I calmly stood in line and waited my turn. Yes, I was seething inside but I didn't want to be the jerk. I left that up to the inconsiderate woman ahead of me.

Whether or not you want my advice, here are a few words of wisdom (in no particular order)...
  • If you receive a gift, acknowledge the giver. Don't leave the giver guessing "Did you receive it? Did it get lost in the mail?" Send a thank you note in the mail; the post office will appreciate your business.
  • Merging in traffic is like the teeth in a zipper. Take turns. It's not worth causing an accident (or road rage) by cutting everyone off to be first in line.
  • When going to the movie theater, be considerate by not talking, answering your cell phone or crunching on popcorn with your mouth open. But most importantly please, please keep your kid from kicking the back of my seat.
  • Do you like to be remembered on your birthday? I don't have the best relationship with my mother, but I never fail to send a card for Mother's Day, her birthday, and Christmas. The emphasis is on "send a card" as in send via the U.S. Postal Service; not e-mail.
  • Do not litter! I can't say enough about this so I'll stop while I'm ahead.
  • When driving on the expressway and you come to a complete stop, there is a reason. Usually that reason is a serious accident that requires emergency vehicles. Do not drive in the emergency lane in an effort to get two car lengths ahead. Keeping emergency lanes clear could make the difference between life and death.
I could keep going but I think you get the point. If you don't, there is no hope for you. If you have your own words of wisdom please feel free to leave a comment. Thank you!


Jamie Payne said...

Amen sister! I'm horrible at sending's my greatest fault in life despite being raised to always send thank you notes. I think you are righ though...everyone seems to have their own agenda these days and there is no concern for other's time or feelings. Thanks for the reminder to be more considerate!

Deb said...

My niece and nephew still send thank you notes and it touches me every time! Now my daughter will do this but my son, well, he is a lost cause!

I recently have been on the receiving end of the very nice gesture of "paying it forward". Now, I am tasked with doing a nice deed for someone!

Oh, by the way, I have been hired to do the wedding invitations! Thanks for your advice!