Thursday, September 04, 2008


Quoting Jane Ann Morrison from Monday’s Review Journal:

Here are some rules of considerate conduct that she discussed, most of them seemed quite logical, which is probably why few people exhibit these skills: Pay attention. Acknowledge others. Think the best. Listen. Be inclusive. Speak kindly. Don’t speak ill. Accept and give praise. Respect even a subtle "No". Respect others’ opinions. Be agreeable. Keep it down (and rediscover silence). Respect other people’s time. Respect other people’s space. Apologize earnestly. Assert yourself. Avoid personal questions. Care for your guests. Be a considerate guest. Think twice before asking for favors. Refrain from idle compliments. Accept and file constructive criticism. Don’t shift responsibility and blame.

She started her article by talking about people that were not very considerate of others. Tess just posted about standing in line at the grocery checkout with full cart and kids and letting people with fewer items go ahead of her, and asked how many go aheads was ok? I’ve become rather vicious after a few times at the market; I don’t shop very often, so usually have a fairly full cart. I used to let people with one or two items in ahead of me, but the last two proceeded to pay with paychecks without having ID, so instead of a quick thirty second transaction I ended up standing for fifteen minutes while managers were called and banks were phoned and information was obtained, so now I don’t let anybody in line ahead of me. It's up to the store to keep that ten items or less line open for people with just a few things to purchase. Does that sound that bad? OK, which of the above items am I missing out on?

But back to the rules of civility; perhaps it's because I live in a tourist oriented town with a lot of transients moving through, or maybe I’m just an old fart that remembers things incorrectly, but I sure have noticed that a lot of people are not very nice. This would include the general driving population, as we seem to have the world’s worst drivers. Not just the ones that cut you off then flick a convenient digit at you, or the ones that sit on your bumper pushing you while you do the speed limit (yes, I admit it, I’m old and drive in the right lane and only do five over the limit) then zip around and wave, or the ones that pass everyone sitting at a red light over in the right turn only lane, block traffic behind them by not turning right, then drive straight ahead and force themselves in. Just in general the drivers here are really bad, and not friendly about it as well.

No, my main complaint is about the general way that people feel they are the center of everything, and all things should wait on them. Some examples:
1. Tourists, that feel they can stop right in the middle of wherever they are and take pictures of each other - no, don’t walk in front of the camera, they are there.
2. Shoppers, that feel they should be next to check out, and you are just standing there in line to look at things.
3. People phoning into a store with questions, who feel the clerk should ignore customers standing in front of them and run around the store to check stock for the phone caller.
4. That person in the restaurant, that wants service right now, the waiter is theirs and heck with the rest of the tables, and why is the food taking so long and why did you let my coffee cup get down to half full?
5. Drivers (yes, again) that own the road, heck, so what if they are in the left lane and want to make a right turn, that’s the way they want to go so it is up to you to avoid them.
6. Store clerks talking to their friends on the cell phone, hey, just stand in front of the register and wait, they’ll get to you eventually.
7. That person on the cell phone talking loudly to whomever, wherever, without regard to anyone. Be it at a restaurant, movie, supermarket, or just standing in the middle of the sidewalk waving their arms. Hey, I’m talking here.

So, can you add to this list? I know there are probably a number of things that I do which annoy people (who, me?).

Can’t we all just get along?

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