Thursday, 5 November 2009

A quick guide to manners and politeness.

etiquetteSee the full sized image by KnitXcorE @ Flickr here.

Mind your P’s and Q’s.
I’ve worked behind a till for three years now in a chemist and a cinema. Very different jobs and very different clientele. Last night, I was sitting having a think about work as I put this weeks hours in my diaries and I realised that while the ill and sick were thankful when I helped and served them in the chemist, the cinema-goers are certainly not. In fact, just two nights ago twenty-something year old man tried to be “subtle” and make me feel stupid under his breath for “forgetting” something he hadn’t actually asked for. Obviously the baseball cap gives me mind reading abilities and lowers my IQ by about 25%. And not once during the whole transaction did him or his partner say please or thank you.

That really gets up my nose.

It’s three simple words which should be second nature to everyone. While it’s possible at home and with friends I’m not always mindful of my manners, I most certainly am in public – shops, restaurants, work and university.

Three simple rules.
It’s not difficult to be polite. It really isn’t. Here’s a list of some of my personal habits and just common sense:

  1. Asking for something? Say please!
    May I have a large coke, please?”
    ”A return to the uni, please.”
  2. Been given something or have someone performed a service for you? Say thank you!
    While getting off a bus - “Thanks!”
    When handed change in a shop - “Thank you!”
  3. Bumped into someone or got in their way? Apologise!
    Oops, sorry about that.”
    ”Excuse me.”
    ”So sorry.”

It’s just three simple words. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve had to prompt people to say please (and I do it!) because I don’t feel I should be spoken at – I should be spoken to. Just because someone’s scanning tins in Tesco or serving McFries in McDonalds does not necessarily mean they are stupid and it most certainly does not make them less than a person.

Tell me about some of your manner pet peeves or a time someone was inherently rude to you – it’s good to get it out your system!


Ps. I just had to show you this picture I found when I was searching flickr – it gave me a good giggle alright.toilet


  1. Hear hear! I can't stand rudeness and I see far too much of it every day. Great post!

  2. It just annoys me so much when there's parents and children and the adults don't make any effort to show manners and politeness to their children. Pure stupidity!

  3. I agree so much, I work in m&s and I serve the rudest people you can ever imagine, then I will get the sweetest little lady, I suppose that makes it a bit better!