Saturday, November 25, 2006

A Gentle Reminder

Using proper etiquette affects us as we go about our day in lots of different ways.

Take for instance, the old guy and old woman (I could have chosen to write "gentleman and lady" while describing these individuals, but that would be a stretch of courtesy on my part) behind my fifteen year old son and I yesterday as we were standing in line to get tickets at the movie theater. As the story goes...

My son and I had arrived early and were standing outside the theater for the doors to open. As we waited, a family of six came up and cut between us and the door. (We had chosen to stand back a bit to allow the theater workers the ability to open the door). My son gave me a look that said (without saying), "would ya look at that?". (A small case of rudeness we thought). When the workers were able to push the family out of the way to get the door open we all went in.

Behind us in line was the old man and his wife.

We all lined up in front of the young woman selling tickets. As she started to make the first transaction for the line-cutters in front of us, she realized that the computer had not loaded properly and called the manager over. The manager quickly ran to a back room as the line grew in the lobby to 50 people or so.

The old guy didn't give the theater workers the time it took to pour a cup of coffee before he started in.

"What's the holdup?", he asked, as he stepped around me and my son to eyeball the young woman. Calmly she smiled and said, "It's just a problem with the computer loading and will be fixed in just a minute". Glaring now at the young woman, the old guy demands, "Can't you sell us a ticket without the computer? Don't you KNOW how to make change without it?". My son was rolling his eyes now, and I found whatever holiday spirit I had evaporating rapidly.

Maintaining her smile, the young woman replied, "No sir, I'm sorry, but I can't. The computer opens the cash drawer.". Rapidly the old guy shot back, "So how long is it going to take to fix that thing? Are we going to miss half the movie because of it?".

Taking a deep breath now, the young woman refreshes her smile and said, "Sir, I can guarantee you won't miss a thing". I wondered at this time if she was thinking, "except for the times you will go to the bathroom during it". Hopefully, he had his "depends" on.

So, the old man steps back into line behind my son and I. But was he satisfied with her answer? Heck no. He starts complaining to his wife, who evidently had taken the role of mediator during their marriage, and now she steps out around my son and me. Without repeating the conversation between her and the young woman, needless-to-say she managed to repeat the conversation (nearly verbatim) the young woman had just had with her husband.

By now all my good humor was gone (a huge black cloud had darkened my leisure time spent on BLACK FRIDAY). The time that had elapsed from the moment the manager had sprinted to the back room to fix the glitch and now had been under 3 minutes. Thinking to myself, that gramps and grannie needed to take a nap, I muttered loudly to myself, "How RUDE". Immediately, my son looked shocked and whispered, "Mom, they can hear you". Frowning now, I turned to my son and said in the same tone, "I INTENDED THEM TO. There is no excuse for such whining by grown adults for a five minute wait in line." Now, my son whispers back, "But Mom, they are OLD PEOPLE." My reply, "Exactly the point. They are not setting a good example for everyone around them." I heard two audible gasps behind us, and then silence.

By this time, the computer was fixed and the line-cutters in front of us were completing their ticket purchases. After we bought ours and began the walk to the theater room, my son groaned and said, "God Mom, do you think they will follow us? I've never seen you do anything like that before." Laughing, I told him not to worry about it and that under the circumstances I would do it again. Regardless of age, etiquette should be used at all times and when someone is rude or out of line it is perfectly OK to remind them of it. Especially when you are as old as me.

Now speaking of etiquette, this is just a gentle reminder to those of you who visit here and leave a trackback post - please give credit where credit is due and leave a reciprocating link from within the post you are linking up to me. It could be misconstrued on my part, if you neglect to do so, YOU are RUDE.

With thanks I say - HAVE A GREAT DAY!

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(All open trackback post links MUST be reciprocated by a link to this site within your original post - it's only good manners, ya know...)

posted by Is It Just Me? at 7:13 AM