Subject: Bad Manners
It’s been a little while since I’ve written a Pet Peeve of the Week, but don’t fret – it’s not because I haven’t been annoyed. It’s because I often sit patiently on a topic, slowly collecting material to give you my (unfortunately) first hand experiences. And so, over the course of the last month, this week’s Pet Peeve is born, while manners have obviously suffered a slow death.
1. Moving to Avoid People on the Sidewalk/Intersection:
I began to notice this trend more aggressively once Ottawa was graced with snow throughout the past month. As the sidewalks and intersections become more narrow thanks to icy snow banks, I came to realize that for some reason, I am ALWAYS the person who pauses, moves to the side, or clambers over said icy snow banks to allow others to cross. Seriously, I am ALWAYS the person who shuffles dutifully out of the way while men and women push past me without moving a millimetre. And while you may think that this is because I actually HAVE manners, I can tell you that in some situations, it’s NOT. I have literally had to become ‘Frogger’ à la George Costanza when crossing the busy intersection outside the Rideau Centre in an attempt to merely stay upright. I actually believe that some of these people wouldn’t even notice if I was body-checked to the ground. The worst part is, this behaviour has tempted to stop accommodating these sidewalk hogs and shoulder-check them next time I’m in a face-off. My politeness can only go so far people and I’m being pushed to the brink!
Please and Thank You:
NON-NEGOTIABLE. Stop acting like you own the world and don’t need to show gratitude or appreciation. Chances are, you’re nowhere NEAR famous or fabulous enough to pull off that diva-behaviour.
Holding Doors Open:
A lot of the time, holding doors open is associated with male chivalry. Ummmm, P.S. We are currently living in 2012, not 1950. Yes, it’s nice when men hold doors open for women, but it’s also nice when everyone holds doors open for everyone, regardless of gender. People are genuinely SHOCKED when I wait for 3 seconds to hold the door open for the person trailing slightly behind me. Isn’t that sad!? Are we literally that hard up for time that we can’t pause the split second to make sure that the door behind us isn’t slamming in another human being’s face?
Respecting Your Elders:
I recently saw a 56 year old man (I know his age, because he announced it in fury) get up to offer his seat to an elderly woman on the bus, while approximately 10 teenagers/20-somethings sat comfortably in priority seating.* To me, this is inexcusable. If you know me well, you know that my grandparents are two of my favourite people on the planet. And if I saw my Nana struggling with a parcel, standing on the bus, I would literally inflict physical harm on the young people sitting down. I don’t care how important your latest text/bbm is or that you’re wrapped up in a really great game of Angry Birds. Get off your entitled teenage/20-something year old ass and offer up your seat to Nana…or else.
*Before anyone asks: I was standing on this bus trip and had no seat to offer.
I’m tired of nasty people getting away with bad manners and bad behaviour. We’re all in this world together, so we all need to take responsibility for our actions and act courteously towards each other. Imagine a world where a door never slams aggressively in your face. A world where two people smile and move gently out of each other’s ways. A world where Nana can always sit comfortably. It’s simple really: basic human decency. That’s really all I’m after…in a nutshell.