Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Saturday Seven: Rules for Good Manners

At the risk of sounding like a curmudgeonly old man, I am astonished by the number of people in our society who lack basic good manners. I'm not suggesting that we practice Victorian-era manners, but things like holding a door open for someone behind you, or saying please and thank you go a long way. Or how about smiling more? Whenever I answer my phone at work, I always say "Good morning this is Rick". I just don't think people even exchange the good afternoon/good evening expressions anymore. I admit I am somewhat of a fossil at times, but the other expression I enjoy using is when I meet someone for the first time. When introduced, as I shake hands, I say "How do you do?" instead of just "hi". Invariably, this takes the other person by surprise and forces them to reply with a "oh, very well thanks for asking" type response. Now I realize that saying "how do you do" is very old fashioned, but hey I'm an old fashioned kind of guy. Being an animal lover, I often look to the animal kingdom for such cues. I'll go out on a limb and say: everything you need to know about life you can gleam from your dog. This brings me to another scintillating edition of:
The Saturday Seven: Rules for Good Manners
#1 Respect your elders- they've been around longer and seen it all. Besides, you'll be old one day soon enough.

#2 Don't speak loudly- why stress people out so much. It comes across as aggressive and forceful.

#3 Don't interrupt others- Let them finish speaking, then you get your turn. just like in kindergarten, remember?

#4 Don't stare at people- Glance if you must, but at least be discreet if you must!

#5 Don't lose your temper- Show some restraint. Keep it cool, practice deep breathing and let go of the anger.

#6 Don't spit in public. Oh how gross. Unless you drank a mouthful of poison, otherwise go to the restroom or somewhere out of view.

#7 Always be Polite- use common sense, act according to where you are and who you are with.

Bonus Entry- Don't curse- Is it really necessary? Can't you express yourself using standard words from the English language? Try going a week without swearing, see how you do. Unless of course, you are in a bar with the guys telling "fish stories", then that's OK I guess!

Another Bonus entry: Take pride in your appearance- How you look and what you wear. It won't kill you to dress up once in awhile.

-Rick Rockhill


snowelf said...

I really got to work on the not swearing thing... I am the worst!! I don't swear in front of my chilis so I know I can hold back if I really tried.

This is SUCH a cute post!! The pics add so much! :)


Lilian said...

I couldn't agree with you more ... Everything you mention on your post, all those little details, could make a world of a difference when dealing with people. It's like the butterfly effect. Sometimes even a smile or a "how do you do?" added to genuine interest for those around us can brighten up somebody's day [I don't mean to sound like a Hallmark card ;o)]. I also love the dressing up part... and I don't swear, ever. I guess, I'm sort of an odd character in these modern times :o)

You post so fast that is kind of difficult to keep track of everything you write, but in any case, I just love your blog ... I am recommending it to many friends, so do not be puzzled if you get comments in Spanish hahaha ...

Scott said...

Ah! We should all take lessons from our K-9 friends.

marlupe said...

I totally agree with you on this post rick. they used to teach good manners in school, but not anymore.

Tea & Margaritas in My Garden said...

I agree too Rick. Manners should still be taught and used.
Love the doggy pics!


Mags said...'ve hit the nail on the head! Holding doors for people these days seems to be a lost art. I always hold the door for the people behind me-how many of them say "thank you"? About 1 in 50! And when I'm walking behind someone they almost always slam the door in my face without even looking back to see if someone's behind them.

How rude!

Thank you for letting me rant on your blog. 8)


Don't forget:
. Shake hands firmly, while looking directly into the others eyes..repeating their name over and over in your head so when you turn to introduce them to others, you won't look like a moron having forgot their name-that one always made me crazy.

and, treat people as you want to be treated.

Manners..I'm surrounded in it with my three little boys..the responsibility and freedom rules are kicking in now with the kindergartner..ugh-"call mommy if you guys leave the bar early, so I'll send a cab to get you." :)
Have a Martini filled Saturday!

bunnygirl said...

I totally agree with all of this, although the swearing bit comes hard for me at times. I've gotten a lot better in the twelve years since I left the restaurant biz, though! :-)

But can I add: "Remember it's not all about you?" It drives me crazy when someone blocks a supermarket aisle with their cart or chit-chats with a cashier while the line behind them grows longer and longer, or when someone dilly-dallies at a traffic light when there's a whole line of cars waiting.

If there are other people waiting, we owe it to them to conduct our business as quickly and efficiently as we reasonably can. If someone wants to tell jokes to the waiter or organize their purse at the check-out counter, they should look around first and make sure they're not inconveniencing anyone else.

rhodester said...

One more who agrees with you. I'm courteous to EVERYONE, and without an agenda.. it's just for the sake of treating people respectfully. I'm amazed at people (yes, typically YOUNGER people) who don't make eye contact or practice congeniality, especially if they're on the business side of the counter when I'm a customer.

MONA said...

Etiquette sure make an impression!

Thanks for posting this :)

They look so innocent except when they bare their fangs!!

Sheila said...

Well and humorously said.

carly said...

there should be a TV ad with these dogs teaching manners on sat morning TV cartoons for kids!

Cheryl said...

All good rules. I wish someone would teach them to my daughter. She doesn't listen to me. You know...I'm the mom, and she's the smarter kid.

Desert Songbird said...

I think I have pretty good manners, but once in a while I do swear. I admit it.

Bad girl, bad girl!

Steven said...

they're almost like the "golden rules." Great photos to correspond.


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