Saturday, 13 July 2013

Excuse Me, Mr Pigeon!

Similar to many others, I have been brought up to say please and thank you. It has been programmed into my brain and is similar to an automated answer phone message, except with more feeling behind the words. I'm not just polite automatically, I want to be nice. I want to say good morning to elderly couple walking down their dog. I want to wish the shop keeper well as he gives me my ribena, pack of minstrels and the latest copy of Company magazine. These small exchanges of niceness can make the world a better place (maybe not in a big way but as Mr Tesco says ‘Every little helps!’).

My Question is: Is it possible to be too polite? I have often been a guest in someone’s home and decline the offer of a cool refreshing drink even though I was so thirsty -Why did I do that?? I guess I was trying not to be in the way or any bother. I am often on the brink of social awkwardness. I go on walks quite often, walks with a purpose or just to clear my head, and on said walks you may hear me say, “Oh, excuse me.” Of course that is a polite thing to do, but even I know that isn't necessary when being in the way of a pigeon. Maybe the pigeon was in my way but I am not one to barge my way through others. Dr Doolittle got away with speaking to animals didn't he?

Nothing is wrong with being polite. In fact after thinking long and hard about my awkward ways I think I should embrace them more. I will continue to thank the fly that leaves through the window without any help and I will keep saying please after every item I order at the McDonald’s drive thru. However I will never have time for cold callers telling me I have PPI to claim. I'm saving them time by saying they have the wrong number – that’s polite compared to what some people shout down the phone. 

A pet hate of mine is people being impolite. There is no need for it and a "Thank you kind stranger", is simple enough or Sorry when accidentally bumping into someone. One more thing - Queues. I'm not a fan of queuing but I wouldn't cut in. Why do some people not know how to queue? Sorry to rant but it's so frustrating when the majority of people follow these social etiquettes yet few go about ruining the systems put in place to keep the things fair.

What are your views on politeness? Please share your pet hates, socially awkward moments and thoughts with me! Thank you for reading x


11 comments:

Kayspray said...

It makes a huge difference in this world to have politeness. Something small like saying please and thank you, or something slightly less small like opening up a door for someone, will brighten up a day considerabley.

Kayspray said...

There's a brilliant Twitter account (https://twitter.com/SoVeryBritish) which tweets snippets of typically British cultural behaviour, so unsurprisingly it's often politeness-related. Reading it and realising how much of it applies to me has made me realise what a strange relationship we have with politeness. One of my favourites was something like "I'm sorry" meaning "you stood on my foot".

So I think you can be too polite for common sense ;) But it oils the wheels and, here, I think it can seem quite rude if someone isn't excessively polite....

Kayspray said...

I am now following SoVeryBritish on Twitter- Thanks for introducing it to me! There are amazing cultural differences when it comes to politeness - I stayed in Germany for a while and it didn't take me long to realise please and thank you held little value in comparison to the UK.
Thank you for visiting my humble little blog! :) xx

Kayspray said...

I agree 100% with you Tracie! The smalls things make all the difference :) xx

Kayspray said...

You're right! Nothing is wrong with being polite. I'm a southern girl who was raised on "yes ma'am's" and "yes sir's". In Japan it's considered polite to decline a beverage when one is offered to you as a guest. Nowadays people look at you cross-eyed for being polite. Let's not let etiquette fall by the wayside!


New friend visiting from SITS :)

Kayspray said...

It's funny how something can be polite in one country yet rude in another. In England we are told from a young age to finish everything on our plate but in China finishing everything means the hosts didn't satisfy your hunger. Thanks for visiting xx

Kayspray said...

I am exactly the same. I'll say sorry if someone walks into me and I've been known to apologise to shop mannequins too! This said, I can't think of anything I dislike more than people with no manners. I agree that we should embrace our good manners and hopefully they'll catch on! :)

Heather xx

heatheresweet.blogspot.co.uk

Kayspray said...

I would love for you to share and link up at my weekly TGIF Link Party if you haven't already this week. Your favorite posts, most popular, recent or new! The party is open every Thursday night and closes Wednesday's at midnight. Followed by (Not SO) Wordless Wednesday! http://apeekintomyparadise.blogspot.com/. I would be honored if you join us! Have a wonderful week!

Hugs, Cathy

Kayspray said...

I'm sure the mannequins appreciated your apology! No matter how rude people are, I've learnt it's best to metaphorically 'kill them with kindness'. (This blog does not condone murder) x

Kayspray said...

As a mom, I'm especially impressed when kids are polite, for some reason. We have six kids, and at least a few of those six are highly social, so there are a lot of little ones coming and going at our house. My husband and I always remark on the ones who are especially polite to us as guests in our home. You can tell when parents have taught their kids to be polite and, likewise, when they have not.

Kayspray said...

Thanks for visiting! Manners should be learnt from a young age - there is something so adorable about a young child saying, "Thank you very much". x