In Defence of Good Manners

Rhona Scullion defends the art of good manners.

 I’m sure that the more people I meet, the older I feel. As they shove past  me in the street or cut into the queue in Tesco (a crime which to be quite frank I  think would be cut right down with a nice public flogging as penance),  demand things instead of asking nicely, or (my biggest pet peeve) butt  into your conversation and then steadfastly ignore you while talking to  your friend; I can feel this old-fashioned and very British sense of outrage fill me. I want to whip out a walking stick, rap them soundly on the knuckles and admonish them for their contemptible social skills and complete lack of manners.

It’s all a bit worrying really because either I am stuck in a time which I have never actually existed in, or everyone around me is slowly regressing into an alarmingly Neanderthal-passive-aggressive state. Maybe it is just me and my expectations are too high or sense of civility and politeness are out-dated, but I don’t think so. There just seems to be an increasing disregard for good social graces and I’m sick of it. I know that most of the time it’s just because people aren’t thinking, but this just infuriates me more. I find myself shoving back, grabbing their collar and yanking them to the end of the queue, or inserting myself between them and said friend stating in a very pointed and obnoxious way, “hello!” All of these actions culminating in bemused, offended and sometimes downright terrified looks as they all assess my potential for entrance to a mental facility.

This is clearly not the best solution to the problem and perhaps I should work on my maturity levels before I start picking fault with other people’s manners but I really feel that they are forcing my hand. If they weren’t so bloody pig-ignorant in the first place then none of this unpleasantness would be necessary. I see no reason why people can’t just be a little more aware of those around them and take the time to acknowledge them.

I just find people are either oblivious or far too personal. You are either invisible to them or an imbecile who has deliberately screwed up and will pay through the nose for it. I could go on a whole other rant about how people constantly think they can sue everyone else around them, but I’ll spare you for now. What people do deserve is some common courtesy and not to be looked over, trodden on or treated as disposable. It’s really not that much effort, but you’d be surprised by how many people deem it to be an overexertion. I suppose instead of a walking stick, I could just pretend I take part in a sport that requires equipment that can be used as weaponry. So next time someone decides not to mind their Ps and Qs, a quick poke in the ribs with a hockey stick, squash racquet or jousting lance might give them cause for thought.

 

Rhona Scullion

Image Credit - Lady_K

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