<$BlogRSDUrl$>

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The costs of courtesy in New Jersey 

Perhaps it is because I was raised in Iowa, or maybe it is the old school WASP in me. Either way, I open doors for people, regardless of their gender, age, physical capacity, or sexual orientation, if I get to the door first. Sometimes people smile and say thank you, sometimes not. I do not resent it when people do not thank me, however, because I do it as much out of habit as to relieve them of the door-opening burden.

That said, my opening of the door for you does not explicitly or implicitly authorize you to enter the line in front of me and order six differently mixed lattes and an assortment of pastries for the gang at your morning meeting. Protocol in most parts of the country -- not the greater New York area, perhaps, but just about everywhere else -- calls for you to invite me to order my grande non-fat no-whip mocha ahead of you. Capiche?


38 Comments:

By Blogger TOF, at Tue Jun 30, 10:18:00 AM:

Hah!!  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tue Jun 30, 11:39:00 AM:

Liberalism has destroyed the concept of courtesy, as it exists soley to destroy the social compact that ensures "civilization".
I am not at all surprised that you encounter such discourtesy in Princeton. Having lived in Pennington for most of my life, I have always been amazed at the lack of an upbringing that most residents and students exhibit.  

By Anonymous vicki pasadena ca, at Tue Jun 30, 12:23:00 PM:

Blah, blah, blah. One should consider not starting every sentence with, "Liberals have destroyed". It is ignorant, uninformed and wrong. It is the right wing neocons who have destroyed the concept of discourse and replaced it with ranting and yelling. Please! Grow up.  

By Anonymous Boludo Tejano, at Tue Jun 30, 12:34:00 PM:

It’s not liberals. New Jersey has a certain reputation. Consider this version of the New Jersey State Motto:
Ya Wanna ##$%##! Motto? I Got Yer ##$%##! Motto Right Here!
That sums up the reputation that New Jersey has in many parts of the country.

That being said, after I drove a rental truck on I-95 from New England to Florida, I decided that by comparison to my experience on New York roads, driving on the New Jersey Turnpike was the equivalent of having died and gone to heaven.

vicki pasadena ca: who was it who said that those who are not in agreement with the recent Cap and Trade bill are "traitors to the earth?" Don't think it was a neocon.  

By Blogger Dawnfire82, at Tue Jun 30, 12:36:00 PM:

"It is ignorant, uninformed and wrong. It is the right wing neocons who have destroyed the concept of discourse and replaced it with ranting and yelling."

Hahahaha!

The 'neo-cons' took power in 2001. And who exactly spent the next *eight years* ranting and yelling?

Marijuana destroys long term memory.  

By Anonymous vicki pasadena ca, at Tue Jun 30, 12:47:00 PM:

Dawn, the neocons have been with us since the days of Ralph Reed and Bill Bennett( the compulsive gambler) trying to tell us the value of "family values" and all the time destroying the value of families. Preaching about values and living values seems to be their weakness. Marijuana destroys long term memory? I think screaming and yelling causes oxygen to leave the brain and causes memory loss.And judgement loss.  

By Blogger Christopher Chambers, at Tue Jun 30, 12:57:00 PM:

Um, all the times I've had courtesy backfire on me as been in situation involving "old school WASPs." Imagine that. Doesn't matter where--the frozen custard stand on the boardwalk, the grocery store, the airport, the mall.

That said, it's not a liberal or conservative thing. It's an asshole thing. People are absorbed with (1) self and (2)work. Bad combo when it comes to everything from courtesy to compromise.  

By Anonymous Robert Arvanitis, at Tue Jun 30, 01:40:00 PM:

vicki in California - Yes, the liberals DID destroy courtesy, along with all the other unwritten rules which govern polite behavior and lubricate social intercourse. The liberals despise those understandings as "oppressive" which forces us into ever-more detailed and explicit codification of behavior.

Tigerhawk -- Sadly, vicki's bad influence forces into one-off "prisoners' dilemma." There is no payoff for kindness, so it disappears, every man for himself in the new world. You can either accept that as the price of your honor, or else stop holding doors and be less of a man. Remember that "honor" and "onus" share a common etymology; honor is a burden to be borne.  

By Blogger Christopher Chambers, at Tue Jun 30, 02:19:00 PM:

"Yes, the liberals DID destroy courtesy, along with all the other unwritten rules which govern polite behavior and lubricate social intercourse. The liberals despise those understandings as "oppressive" which forces us into ever-more detailed and explicit codification of behavior."

Huh?  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tue Jun 30, 02:25:00 PM:

Mr. Chambers, please see any liberal college's rules on dating for an example of what was written by Mr. Arvantis.
"I am considering kissing you, may I proceed?"
"Was the kiss acceptable enough to merit yet another? May I proceed if so?"
As for ignorant, uninformed and wrong, I reserve that for those whom start their conversations with...Blah, blah blah..."
True intellectual paucity.
As for the Turnpike, I will say this: NJ drivers drive like they have someplace to go, and KNOW how to get there.  

By Anonymous feeblemind, at Tue Jun 30, 02:29:00 PM:

TH, I understand your annoyance, but isn't it enough to know in your heart that you did the right thing?  

By Anonymous tyree, at Tue Jun 30, 03:24:00 PM:

Feeblemind-
After a while the constant lack of respect starts to hurt, not that we can't take it. I have had thousands of experiences like Tigerhawks over the decades and seldom have I been properly thanked.
Years ago I helped an old Mexican push his car out of the traffic lane during a blinding December rainstorm. I drove him home after we couldn't get the car to start up. He asked me to wait for a moment while he went inside. He came out with a bottle of Jose Cuervo Tequila and told me to take it. He said he was going to visit his brother in a week and he always brought him a bottle. "Take this," he said, "for tonight you are my hermano."
I know in my heart that I did the right thing, but in returning my kindness he created a memory that will last a lifetime. I wish I had more memories like that.  

By Blogger Catchy Pseudonym, at Tue Jun 30, 03:58:00 PM:

Are conservatives supposed to be drinking grande non-fat no-whip mochas? I guess since there is no soy product involved I can let it slide.  

By Anonymous vicki pasadena ca, at Tue Jun 30, 04:00:00 PM:

Actually, Chris, the courtesy was destroyed by the neocons when they decided that it was "cool and right and just" to murder doctors in the name of "saving lives" Biggest pile of $#%* on the planet. I am a liberal and I extend kindness to all, even those people who want to preach morality and turn around, cheat on their spouses,troll for hookers in public bathrooms and get their secretaries to buy prescription drugs illegally. I would probably pass out if a neocon showed me any courtesy or politeness. You have Ann Coulter as a shining example of what is a necon. Mean, nasty, exploitative and with a holier than thou attitude. Please.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tue Jun 30, 04:04:00 PM:

There you go, a classicly counter-intuitive proposition: "Drink a bottle of Jose Cuervo and create a memory!"

In another age than this one, I was fortunate enough to grow up in a small town in western Virginia, where courtesy was expected in all interactions and malefactors harshly punished. In my public school, for example, all teachers were to be referred to with the gender-correct honorific, "maam" or "sir".

While I do not enforce those same standards today with my New Jersey raised children, I get pretty close on matters of door opening, chair giving up to ladies, dinner table manners and general indications of respect for elders. I can't really help myself, and I wonder why others choose to raise their children so differently from the way I am certain they themselves were raised.  

By Anonymous tyree, at Tue Jun 30, 04:07:00 PM:

Anon-
Now that is funny.  

By Anonymous vicki pasadena ca, at Tue Jun 30, 04:10:00 PM:

I was born in Ohio and raised all over the country. I currently live in California. Politeness is in my genes. My daughter, an east coast college graduate and current law student, is called the polite police because she was taught to say please and thank you, has decent table manners and is kind to all. Kindness and manners are taught and it is not a regional thing, it is a parent thing.  

By Anonymous Boludo Tejano, at Tue Jun 30, 05:39:00 PM:

vicki pasadena ca
I am a liberal and I extend kindness to all

If you really “extend kindness to all,” you would not ascribe to “neocons” that "they decided that it was 'cool and right and just' to murder doctors in the name of 'saving lives.' " I an a neocon, i.e., a former liberal, and never have believed , never decided, what you claim I did. I can do without your “kindness.”

While you see yourself as kind, you do not come across to me that way. Someone who claims that I approve murdering MDs when I do not, does not come across to me as kind. Anything but.

I once was a liberal, and nothing pasadena vicki has said has made me decide to return to the liberal fold.  

By Anonymous vicki pasadena ca, at Tue Jun 30, 05:43:00 PM:

Botudo,
Promise?  

By Blogger Country Squire, at Tue Jun 30, 05:46:00 PM:

Vicki,

Bravo!

From your previous posts I gather we do not share the same political beliefs but at least we can agree that kindness and manners are taught by parents.  

By Blogger Tigerhawk Teenager, at Tue Jun 30, 05:47:00 PM:

.................................Guys?
I hope you guys recognize the extreme irony of getting into a heated debate over exactly who destroyed courtesy. Why can't some people just be @$$holes and leave it at that?  

By Anonymous vicki pasadena ca, at Tue Jun 30, 05:51:00 PM:

Thanks, Country Squire. Power to all kinds of views and the good manners to allow them to be heard.  

By Blogger Country Squire, at Tue Jun 30, 06:04:00 PM:

Vicki,

I think we can all appreciate the irony Tigerhawk The Younger points out so well. It seems to go hand in hand with generating more heat than light - wouldn't you agree?  

By Anonymous vicki pasadena ca, at Tue Jun 30, 06:45:00 PM:

Totally, Country Squire.  

By Anonymous Boludo Tejano, at Tue Jun 30, 06:51:00 PM:

vicki pasadena ca:
Power to all kinds of views and the good manners to allow them to be heard.

Such as the good manners to claim that neocons support killing MDs?

As I am a neocon, and never have supported killing MDs, I fail to see the "good manners" in YOUR statement.  

By Blogger Morgan, at Tue Jun 30, 07:15:00 PM:

By Anonymous vicki pasadena ca, at Tue Jun 30, 12:23:00 PM:

IT IS THE RIGHT WING NEOCONS WHO HAVE DESTROYED THE CONCEPT OF DISCOURSE AND REPLACED IT WITH RANTING AND YELLING! /heh  

By Anonymous Squealer, at Tue Jun 30, 08:55:00 PM:

I think you're all wrong. MY code is to get all relevant parties through the doorway as quickly, discreetly, and safely as possible. If that means you go first, fine. Otherwise, I'll go ahead, thank you very much.  

By Anonymous vicki pasadena ca, at Tue Jun 30, 09:18:00 PM:

Interesting discourse, Boludu. Struck a nerve? You may be right, it is wrong to label. Hypocrisy in any form just frosts me. When I think of people like Sanford, cheating on his wife and saying it was "true Love" so that makes it ok, it makes me want to barf.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tue Jun 30, 09:41:00 PM:

The 1960's drove the final stake in the heart of traditional, ahem...conservative social courtesy.  

By Anonymous Boludo Tejano, at Wed Jul 01, 01:10:00 AM:

Vicki from Pasadena:

Holier-than-thou comes in many flavors. As human being we are all susceptible to it. While many liberals assume they are immune to being “holier-than-thou,” they are as susceptible to it as Elmer Gantry was. Example: your “I am polite but neocons are not” (call it what you will) shtick.

(And I quote: ‘I would probably pass out if a neocon showed me any courtesy or politeness.’)

Regarding hypocrites, I am not as upset as you. While I have never been a church member, I do subscribe to the point of view that we are fallen: we are flawed, imperfect beings who fall short of our hopes and expectations. I certainly am. Much of life consists of trying to come to terms with this gap between reality and expectations. A hypocrite is simply someone who has striven to be better, and has found out he is not. Welcome to the club.

Regarding hypocrites etc. which upsets you more: 1) a politician with wife and children who commits adultery or 2) a man who impregnates a woman but takes no responsibility for having done so. ( about 1/3 of births in the US are out of wedlock, with many of them resulting in the father assuming little or no responsibility.)


The second upsets me more, because the father’s not being involved or only partially involved cheats the child for his or her whole life. Perhaps the politician is being a hypocrite, and the unwed fathers are not being hypocrites, but who is doing more harm? If the politician has heretofore been an involved father, the damage to the children is not as great as never having had a father, in most cases. The issue is not hypocrisy, but who is doing less/more harm. That there are millions more unwed fathers not involved with their children than there are adulterous politicians also is a factor.

As I see it, hypocrisy is not the ultimate issue.  

By Blogger Gary Rosen, at Wed Jul 01, 02:22:00 AM:

"When I think of people like Sanford, cheating on his wife and saying it was "true Love" so that makes it ok, it makes me want to barf."

Did you barf when Teddy drove Mary Jo off the bridge? By the way, Ms. Holier-than-thou, "neocon" is widely recognzed as an antisemitic slur.  

By Blogger Tigerhawk Teenager, at Wed Jul 01, 02:37:00 AM:

Gary Rosen:

It is? I think the only connection is that the movement was started by a number of Jews whose names I can't remember and can't be bothered to look up at 2:30 in the morning. I've never heard it used as an antisemitic slur before, only as a blanket term used as a casual reference to some allegedly crazy people.

Also, I repeat what I said before: arguing in a heated debate about who is ruder is itself rude. Personal theory (the kind that is generated at 2:30 in the morning): a lack of courtesy generally points to a lack of self-confidence and security. Basically, most crazy people on both sides of the spectrum are going to be impolite, especially, as has become apparent, during debate.

I mean, we COULD continue the argument over whose crazy people are crazier, but that seems silly and pointless. Let's not.  

By Blogger Dawnfire82, at Wed Jul 01, 03:27:00 AM:

"Dawn, the neocons have been with us since the days of Ralph Reed and Bill Bennett( the compulsive gambler) trying to tell us the value of "family values" and all the time destroying the value of families."

Neo-conservative was a re-name of self-proclaimed 'neo-Reaganites' who accompanied the Bush administration into power. Retroactively labeling anyone who ever thought like them (a Christian Coalition activist who never held political office and an *actual* Reaganite? really?) as a 'neo-con' is wrong.

Besides, casually tossing that term about like a pejorative just makes you look like an ideologue.  

By Anonymous NT, at Wed Jul 01, 07:37:00 AM:

TH teenager has it right. Some people are just A-holes. It is not that complicated.

And NJ has its share, but I've lived in a number of states and these people are everywhere. Best to lead by example and hope that some people are conscious enough to recognize that they are being rude. As for the rest of the boorish, let it go.

Perhaps consider buying coffee someplace other than Starbucks, also. As a little sociology experiment. Plus, you'll save money.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed Jul 01, 09:19:00 AM:

Jeez, this is the Vicki Pasadena anti Neocon tirade and soap box show ain't it? For god's sake don't deny that woman her coffee lest she go off on generalized tirades and vague ad hominem attacks. Amazing.

I'm just trying to figure where her daughter got all caught up in courtesy and kindness. Vicki sounds like the usual hyper sensitive over the top whiner liberal I have grown to distrust.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed Jul 01, 10:40:00 AM:

"If it feels good, do it" is also a way of saying "don't do it if it feels bad"
Liberals just don't "Feel" like being courteous, and as far as I am concerned there is no irony in discussing where the slide began. It is nice to see that my thoughts are proven by Vicki's venom, and I stand by my original comment that the left is far, far more discourteous than conservatives will ever be; but I do accept that there are sphincters of all stripes.  

By Blogger davod, at Wed Jul 01, 12:18:00 PM:

"Politeness is in my genes."

"Please! Grow up."

"Biggest pile of $#%* on the planet."

"Hypocrisy in any form just frosts me."


"I think screaming and yelling causes oxygen to leave the brain and causes memory loss.And judgement loss."

There you go. If you put mix around the phrases you get someone who is mirroring themselves.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Thu Jul 02, 11:18:00 AM:

The courtesy of opening a door for someone comes with the fact that they will be ahead of you once through the door. This is part of the courtesy and always has been.  

Post a Comment


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?