Monday, March 23, 2009

Courtesy and Manners

I think it’s time to talk about courtesy and manners again.

I may be old. OK, I know I’m older, but not old in the sense of adelpated, at least not yet. I admit to being old fashioned, but submit that it is still appropriate when it comes to etiquette.

I know I’m cranky off and on, but aren’t we all from time to time?

I do admit to being a stickler when it comes to courtesy and manners. Here’s what I still do: When waking with a lady on the street, I walk on the outside because that’s what my Dad said a gentlemen should do.

I open doors for a lady. I precede a lady down a staircase. I offer to lift a heavy object. I offer my seat. I hold her chair. I hold her coat. I open her car door and if circumstances provide it, I walk her to her door. These are things I was taught to do as a young man.

When it comes to manners I am also old fashioned. No, not old fashioned, I am right. No elbows on the table, break bread before buttering, forks on the left and knife and spoon on the right with the edge of the knife pointing toward the plate and the spoon on the outside. Don’t smack your lips and don’t start eating until everyone is served and don’t clear the table until everyone is done.

I know to say excuse me when I leave the table. I know to serve from the left and so on.

Here’s what I’ve noticed recently among the young.

A young dinner guest leaving his napkin on the table even after I quietly suggested it goes on the lap.

Parents not disciplining their children and teaching them to use their inside voices in a quiet public area.

Foul language and behavior in public.

Dressing suggestive and inappropriate besides looking sloppy and dumpy.

Cell phone rudeness. Loud conversation that annoys, disturbs and offends all in proximity.

Did I mention cell phone rudeness? Good.


Anonymous said...

You? Crabby?

Happy Monday!

Topher08 said...

I am 33 and I use all of the manners that you prescribe to in your posting. It has been my observation that my generation and those younger, in general, have not been instructed (and disciplined) to display better manners. I was extremely blessed to have parents who provided a fair, loving, but firm hand that was always there to guide me in the correct ways and manners. My parents set very high standards for me and expected me to meet them. It is a sad state of affairs that more people under the age of 40 do not understand how to demonstrate appropriate social manners and decorum.

Anonymous said...

Along these lines, I thought you might enjoy this...

Free Blog CounterEnglish German Translation