Are manners obsolete?
When was the last time someone held the door for you? I don’t care if you are a woman or a man, if you are walking out and someone is behind you, it is common courtesy to hold the door for that person. I am actually shocked now when someone does it and it has become the rare occasion and is no longer the norm. Has anyone said thank you to you, with the exception of the cashier at the grocery store and they get paid to do it and even then sometimes don’t. What about, “excuse me” if they bumped into you by mistake? When was the last time a stranger smiled at you, if they happened to look up from their phone or the sidewalk as they walk along in their many journeys.
I am very upset about all of this and feel people in general have gotten increasingly rude over the last few years. Granted, working retail has not helped with my view of the situation. And I feel we have created this “monster” customer due to the stores giving in to all their demands. If they don’t like something or feel they have been treated unfairly they call and complain and the stores give them free merchandise or money back. People know this and take advantage of it. If you look at someone the wrong way they report it to management. The consumer is all about getting something for nothing. I’m all for getting the best deal and looking out for myself as anyone that knows me knows this, but there is a line. And I think we have crossed it.
It is always the same scenario every time I go shopping lately…I am happily looking at racks of tops or shelves full of beautiful shoes and out of the blue someone wants to see the exact top or shoe I am looking at. Ok, thats fine, I will just go to another aisle and look at handbags. No one is in this aisle. I start looking and immediately 4 other people come up and stand around me wanting to look at the exact same bag I am looking at. I must have great taste. Well I do, but that’s another story.. This happens every single time I go shopping, doesn’t mater where, what city or what store.
I am used to this by now and used to the fact that no one says excuse me or sorry if I have to move out of “their” way. But my recent “bad” shopping experience tops all the others I have ever had and that’s saying a lot. I was in a store last weekend and happily looking at some soaps and items on a shelf, when all of a sudden I was surrounded by 3 women of various ages. I think maybe a mother and 2 daughters. I continued to look, I thought maybe if I ignored them they would go away. But that didn’t happen..This did..One of the women reached over top of my head and actually bumped me on the head to pick up something from the shelf. I couldn’t believe this even happened, not to mention no one said I’m sorry or excuse me or anything at all. I picked up my item and slammed my cart into theirs and said loudly, “I’m sorry, I’m evidently in “your” way. I’ll go!” I couldn’t help myself, it just came out. I was “mad as hell and not going to take it anymore”. To my amazement, they all looked shocked and one of them said sweetly and with an honest, sincere look on her face, “Oh, you’re not in our way.” Really..
I mentioned this to my friends later that evening and asked them, ‘is it just me or are people getting ruder?”(not sure if this is a word, but it should be) Every single one of them agreed..and loudly agreed, even the ones I didn’t expect to since they are always so nice and not like me who lets this kind of thing bother me. One of the girls even shared a story that had recently happened to her while shopping.. She had been carrying a top around because she didn’t get a cart and a woman came up to her and said, “are you going to get that?” Of course she was, even if she didn’t want it, she was now…
So often I have had these encounters and when called out, people seemingly are oblivious about the fact they are doing these things. They truly look shocked and some do say, “oh, sorry”. It is as if everyone is in their own little world and that world is all that matters. You have to shock them back into reality and only then do they see what they are doing. I can’t be the only person to notice this and I hope it’s not because I’m getting old and remember a time when people were nice to each other. I also remember when a person smiled back at you if you smiled at them and most of the time, even said hello.
So what is wrong with people? What happened to create this environment? And how do we go about changing this? What stories do you have to share?
And don’t even get me started about angry, crazy drivers, that is for another day.