We have lost something in our culture. Very slowly, etiquette is sneaking away, tail between its legs, head down, dejected from lack of attention.
Yes, that's it...lack of attention. Where are the lessons in politeness, listening skills, and other humanities? I attended a humanities class in the seventh grade, where our teacher attempted to teach us counting in Italian (when are we ever going to need that?), Robert's Rules of Order (boring!), and I don't even remember what else. Probably social etiquette, like how many forks to set at a dinner party, and on which side of the plate they should go. Funny, that I remember (up to a point...I've never used more than two forks). Obviously, none of us (and I was usually a model student) thought any of it was relevant - or anywhere close to cool. I look back and wonder at my younger self...
But today, I witnessed a prime example of boy/girl social etiquette in contrast in the college town where I work. The same scene played out at a stop light twice during the lunch hour.
Young (American) couple crosses street. She is wearing a dress (not that it should matter, but let's face it, a dress matters in how she walks). They start out crossing together, then they start to skip-run a bit. He runs on ahead of her, leaving her to finish crossing alone.
Young (Asian) couple crosses the street. He has his arm around her shoulder, hers is around his waist. They cross together like this, not hurrying, but going at a pace comfortable for her.
Which guy gets the award for how to treat a lady? Do you think it matters? Why or why not?
Is it relevant that one couple was Asian and the other couple American? Should it be?
Is it relevant that they were both college age? Should it be?
Is dress relevant? Should it be?
What questions or comments do you have on how to treat girls?
Do you think I'm old fashioned, and should wake up to today's lifestyle, standards, or culture?
Do you wish you lived in a time where these things mattered more?
In the first scent, my husband seems to think it was a game for them - like a little race to see who crossed first. Do you think he should have let her win? Would you race across a street if you were in a dress (girls) or if your girl companion were?
Do you have any memories of this sort? Were you treated with respect? Did you get shot down for doing the polite thing? How does this subject make you feel?
I'm looking for interaction here. Comment away! Let's start a conversation.