Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Good, Old-Fashioned Manners

Manners. What happened to them? They are still out there, right? You occasionally see them as they make their way into life. However, have they become the ab-norm?

What are manners? Manners are ways of behaving with reference to polite standards, kindness and consideration from one person to another. Have you noticed that when someone shows basic manners, some people wonder, "What is wrong with you?" or "What are you trying to gain?"

Mind you, I am not talking about etiquette. I am not talking about keeping your elbows off of the table or using the right fork. I am talking about treating people with what should be common decency.

When is the last time that you received a thank you card for something that you did or for a gift that you gave? When was the last time that you sent one?

We sent a box of gifts to a family for an occasion. Not only did they not send a thank you note, they did not even acknowledge that they got them. What is up with that?

After our son's last birthday party, we sent thank you cards for each gift. Granted, he was two, so we "helped" him, yet even from an early age, we try to instill gratitude and appreciation as a basic foundation for his character.

As simple as it is, a thank you seems to be a lost manner in today's society.

People talking with food in their mouths bug me to no end. Oh, and when they spit food at the same time-- ugh. Gag. Really, I can wait eight seconds until you swallow that, thank you.

I cannot fathom why sometimes, when I am eating, and someone asks me a question, they seem to get annoyed that I wait until I swallow my food before I reply. Do we really need to be in such a hurry to talk that we cannot have the consideration to not show people our disgusting, chewed up mush -- and spit it on the table in front of them?

Oh, and do not get me started about people talking to me while they are chewing gum like a cow chewing its cud, complete with spittles squishing out. I know, I know; someone will probably get offended by me saying that, but it is just not polite. If you are offended, then you will be welcome to return tomorrow for my post about being offended.

Speaking of a lack of manners...cellular telephones. These little creations are a tool of rudeness for today's world. I went somewhere one time with a friend that was about a half an hour drive. A few minutes into the drive, she got on the telephone with another friend of hers and yakked about nothing important for almost the entire trip...with me sitting right there next to her with my jaw in my lap, astonished. Why was chit-chatting with that person on the other end of the cell phone more important than me, the person sitting right next to her?

Then there is texting. You know what I mean. Some people text all of the time. Have you been in the middle of a conversation with someone when they kept looking down to text with someone else? Did you wonder if your company was that boring?

Again, manners is simply behaving with politeness toward others. Are we raising our children to understand this? Our son knows to say please and thank you. He even says, "Please nicely." Hehe. He is two. It is cute. We are off to a good start.

As time goes on, though, will our son grow to be the kind of person who disrespects his elders or the kind of person who calls people "Ma'am" and "Sir" as a sign of respect? Will our son grow up to be the teenager who rolls his eyes and hurries past the woman struggling with a stroller, four bags of groceries and two more children in tow because she is in the way, or will he grow up to be the young man who holds the door for her and offers to help her carry those groceries? Will our son grow to be a self-centered product of today's society, or will he grow to be a loving, compassionate, respectful man of God -- dare I say, a man with manners?

No, I am not Little Miss Perfect. I sometimes forget a thank you card. I probably speak with food in my mouth from time to time. I may pass someone in need of help without "seeing" them. However, I will continue to make efforts to have manners, to have consideration, and to do for others when I can. I would rather that people wonder what I am up to because of my kindness than because of something else.

If my post today bothers you for any reason, then I accept that. We cannot all agree on everything. How about if we just shake hands and be friends, anyway. Just give me a minute here....


  1. LOL "Just give me a minute here.... (see picture below) LMAO! Love it, hilarious!

    But, sigh, yes, you are right. Manners these days have seemed to go to the wayside. Unfortunately, there aren't as many people, especially the younger generation (like mine and those younger)that still use good manners and well, common sense! Not as many as there were say, 10 years ago.

  2. That was a very good article, I agree with all that you said! I especially like the one where you were talking about when people don't acknowledge you when you send them something, or when you are with them, and they talk to someone else.

  3. Don't you just love it when you think you are the only person who feels a certain way, then you come across something like this? :)
    One of my biggest pet peeves is the "What, you don't know how to say Thank You anymore??" when I hold open a door or allow someone to pull out in front of me in traffic. With the door issue, I have gotten to that "adult" point where I will loudly say "You're Not Welcome" now, especially those who couldn't even open their own door because they are on their cell phone! My feelings are affected because even though "it isn't personal" I am a person, therefore, it IS personal.

    Looking forward to today's post.

  4. You know sis I wondered the same thing for years. What happen to manners? I tell you what I believe happen we lost respect! For so long now it seems like people are only concern about themselves and not others. When I was growing up my parents always told us to respect all people and always have manners. To this day I am a grown woman and I still say yes mam and no sir to people. I say yes ma to my bosses who was much younger then me and co-workers would say why do you say Yes Mam to her she's younger then you, I said I have respect for her position so I treat her or him with respect. To me having manners is very important!

  5. What I love about getting to know you Dawnmarie is that you have a voice and it comes out loud and clear. I love that about you and I am a firm believer that some rules do need to be broken but not manners.

    My big pet peeves are brides and grooms that don't send thank you notes and being with a friend and she answers her phone or friends that allow thier children to interupt and whisper in their ear and on an on it goes. Messy world with very few manners we are living in...

    For the record tee hee... I send out thank you notes always...thanks mama for teaching me that...

  6. Hi DawnMarie Sweetie...
    I am so thrilled you stopped by and enjoyed my post and my blog. I have popped over and signed up to follow your blog. I love reading the truths from people. Yes, you are right sometimes people do not want to hear the truth, but it still needs to come out somewhere.

    I love the one about chewing gum. That has been a pet peave of mine for some time. I just want to reach in there mouth with a tissue and yank it right out of their mouth.

    Texting, oh dear have you hit the nail on the head with this one. I have grown kids and grandkids (4) of the (8) are old enough they have phones and are texting constantly. We have a rule in my house. No phones at the table, no phones on during our conversation time, and if I take them shopping, the phones stay off. I want to be respected and I feel this teaches them exactly that. Don't you just hate hearing other peoples conversation in a resturaunt where you have gone out to enjoy your evening?

    Oh and the last picture, oh my have I seen that many times. Drives me up the wall for sure. In public mind you.

    Thank you for sharing with me today. I will be back sweetie. Have a beautiful day and country hugs, Sherry

  7. Great Blog!! I absolutely agree with you!! It really irritates me when children, especially those with their parents right there, do not show respect or good manners. It seems that even though my generation thought we had taught our children manners and respect for others, they seem to feel that today's society excuses them from using those lessons. I am hoping and praying that good manners will somehow recover and be displayed for the all world to see.