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To wonder what happened to old fashioned manners?

(27 Posts)
Daisysbear Tue 01-Dec-15 10:50:44

I was in a coffee shop yesterday evening and two children (aged about 8 or 9) were tearing around the place, banging against people's chairs, running in and out the door to the garden causing huge gusts of freezing air to blow through the place, and generally being a nuisance while their mums sat sipping coffee and ignoring them.

I was driving through a one way car park system afterwards and a woman coming the wrong way refused point blank to reverse, so I had to.

This morning on the bus two schoolkids sat comfortably chatting away while various people, myself included, stood up to let two elderly women, a middle aged woman with her arm in a sling, and an elderly man sit down.

Shortly after, I was sitting in the dentist's waiting room with about 5 other people and a girl in her twenties walked in and just flung open the window without asking if anyone minded before plonking down on a chair and having a very loud conversation on her phone.

I know there was always rude people around, but all the above happened in the space of less than 24 hours.

AIBU to think that good manners seem to becoming less and less evident, and that a lot of parents don't seem to bother to teach children to show a bit of courtesy and consideration for others?

Or am I turning into a grumpy old lady? smile

timeforabrewnow Tue 01-Dec-15 10:52:29

You've got a cracking memory - so you can't be that old!

Daisysbear Tue 01-Dec-15 10:53:39

As I said, it all happened within the last 24 hours so not much memory required sad.

KoalaDownUnder Tue 01-Dec-15 10:56:46

YANBU, but you'll probably get crucified on this thread anyway. wink

Crankycunt Tue 01-Dec-15 10:58:46

Yanbu at all. We live in an age where everyone is in their own little bubbles and there is no consideration for anyone else.

WorraLiberty Tue 01-Dec-15 11:03:11

I think we remember/concentrate more on those who display a lack of manners, than we do on those who have nice manners.

I think on the whole there are way more mannerly adults and children around than unmannerly.

goodnessgraciousgoudaoriginal Tue 01-Dec-15 11:05:48

YANBU, but people have always been rude. I think nowadays though people are simply less likely to say anything.

You could have given your seats to the elderly people, then given the school kids a bit of a telling off for being so selfish (although to be fair there's no reason why you are any less able to give up your seat than they are).

In the coffee shop, you could have complained to a member of staff and asked them to have intervened. Or, you could have told off the children directly for throwing the door open. It's fucking lazy parenting, but I think most people are okay with people telling off their kids for acting like brats, providing they don't go over the top (eg, screaming at them, etc). I've often told off kids when they were playing up?

You didn't have to give way to that stupid woman in the car. You could have leant out the car and - politely - pointed out that she was coming down the wrong way in a one way street.

Wishful80smontage Tue 01-Dec-15 11:06:36

Yanbu OP so often now I give people the right of way or hold doors open without much as a of never mind 'thank you'.

catfordbetty Tue 01-Dec-15 11:07:14

I have become increasingly aware of poorly behaved children in public spaces especially, since the OP mentions it, coffee shops. However, I'm quite willing to acknowledge that this may simply be a function of age, perception and caffeine addiction!

Enjolrass Tue 01-Dec-15 11:14:40

Yanbu. But I think most people are fairly polite.

Sometimes it seems that there is just a constant run of coming across rude people all at once. Which makes it more obvious.

Or maybe if you are irritated by one thing, other annoying things stand out.

Personally I would have asked the kids to stop opening the door. Their mother squealing her indignation wouldn't have bothered me.

Refused to move my car

I don't think school children are anymore obliged than anyone else to stand up. Unless everyone was infirm.

If I was cold in the dentist I would have stood up and shut it. If she had opened it again I would have told her that asking others that were already there would be the nice thing to do.

But then I am aware I am not the norm and can be shitty when people are rude.

TiffanyAtBreakfast Tue 01-Dec-15 11:15:15


lorelei9 Tue 01-Dec-15 11:21:34

YANBU but it's an old problem - I suspect it's made worse by the fact that our numbers are increasing....

a good excuse to listen to an old favourite song - with a language warning, sorry! Song starts about a minute in...still in the musical, don't know why they took it out of the film.

TheWordOfBagheera Tue 01-Dec-15 11:42:21

As lorelai says it's a story as old as time - the older generation always feels the youth/younger adults of today are ruder and lack the manners etc that their (and previous) generations did.

I expect it's to do with changing perceptions and expectations of others as we age.

But rude people are infuriating so YANBU to feel upset when people are rude to you! That said, I bet even the nicest of us has their moment of unintentionally coming across as rude when life has got the better of them.

LadylikeCough Tue 01-Dec-15 12:02:48

I presume the golden age of manners falls somewhere before the present day, but after all those centuries where it was perfectly acceptable to talk down to, bully, belittle and insult anyone in the so-called lower orders? Lower orders being, naturally: anyone in manual labour or domestic service, most women, and all ethnic minorities.

Happy days! At least rudeness today is democratic.

Daisysbear Tue 01-Dec-15 12:02:37

Just to clarify, we did get up and close the doors a few times in the café and said to the children that they were letting the cold in. Their mothers heard us but said nothing when the children ran in and out again.

Also, I did stand my ground for a while in the car park but the woman insisted that it would be easier for me to reverse back a bit and let her through. When I eventually did, she opened her window and said 'now, was that so hard'? while her child sniggered in the back seat.

It just seems that some people are incredibly self entitled, and don't really care that they're annoying other people.

lorelei9 Tue 01-Dec-15 12:08:48

TheWord - ooh, I definitely didn't mean anything in age terms, I just meant that the story of some people being rude is as old as time. I definitely don't look at teens and think, gosh, they're rude.

In fact, the major thing I notice is that parents of my own age seem to think it's okay for their kids to run amok everywhere so I'm sort of embarrassed of my own age group which is sad.

ProcrastinatorGeneral Tue 01-Dec-15 12:12:19

Could you recall two days worth of generally acceptable and pleasant behaviour too? Or are you just in the mood for a whine about other people?

SSargassoSea Tue 01-Dec-15 12:13:38

Yes it's the present day 'I'm as good as the next person' / 'No fucker's going to tell me how to act' attitude. Makes mixing with the general public a pita. But am not sure if it is actually worse than the 50s/60 when we knew our place and were deferential to those not deserving it.

Underneath most people can be nice.

Daisysbear Tue 01-Dec-15 12:19:59

Yes, Procrastinator I'm sure I could. But this is AIBU and I am interested in discussing whether bad manners are on the increase.

MyLifeisaboxofwormgears Tue 01-Dec-15 12:24:40

The woman who refused to reverse obviously couldn't - if it ever happens again - just say "so you can't reverse then?"

MrsFrisbyMouse Tue 01-Dec-15 12:28:00

The answer is in your title. 'Old Fashioned' Expected behaviours shift and change. Through history there are complaints about the disintegration of society and manners.

Manners are essentially a learnt performance art - a way to allow society to externally judge us. Those who exhibit 'good' manners are judged superior - regardless of their actual conduct in the rest of their lives.

I do think there is a difference between 'good manners' (externally judged) and an intrinsic motivation to respect other people and their spaces.

hesterton Tue 01-Dec-15 12:33:44

I work in a secondary school in an urban area and really often see good manners displayed. Students hold doors, say thank you and good morning and comment politely on a new hair cut. They offer to carry books and apologise if they bump into you by mistake. Maybe we just don't notice all the nice manners amidst the few poor ones.

Lottapianos Tue 01-Dec-15 12:46:51

It does seem that 'basic' manners are not so common any more. By 'basic', I mean saying please and thank you, acknowledging that when you are out in public you are sharing the space with other people, and trying not to be considerate of that fact. Lynn Truss had a great phrase in 'Talk to the Hand' to describe this kind of selfishness - 'my bubble, my rules'. She suggested that lots of people act is if they are in their own living room at all times - taking up as much space as they fancy, making as much noise as they fancy, as if no-one else is around.

On the other hand, I do agree with other posters that you tend to notice the rude people more than the polite ones. I think most people are ok, and the rudeness tends to be down to being oblivious, rather than actually agressive. Still bloody frustrating though!

Daisysbear Tue 01-Dec-15 12:52:11

I agree Lotta. In most cases the people involved seemed simply oblivious as opposed to deliberately asserting their rights or somesuch.

Apart from the woman in the car who was just downright rude and awkward, and in front of her young child as well.

GruntledOne Tue 01-Dec-15 12:54:58

Socrates in around 500 BC: "“Our youth now love luxury. They have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for their elders and love chatter in place of exercise; they no longer rise when elders enter the room; they contradict their parents, chatter before company; gobble up their food and tyrannise their teachers.”

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