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Mama Deb
mamadeb
.:::.:....... ..::...:
Mama Deb [userpic]
Payback, of a sort

I am socially awkward. Seriously. The time I should have been learning/absorbing normal social behavior, I spent in a corner with a book. Sometimes it was by choice, but sometimes it was the ONLY choice, and I don't really observe humans very well anyway.

But in college, I discovered Miss Manners, and Miss Manners is wonderful because she gives RULES of behavior that, if followed, allowed me to act normally. I had algorithms to follow and the fall backs of "I'm sorry" and "Thank you", which always work. Which means I thank anyone I think is reasonable to thank, including bus drivers and cashiers and bag packers. I also don't ask for anything special, like "I"m a good customer, so don't charge me your delivery fee."

What happens? Usually, I get a smile and a "you're welcome" and that's about it. Which is all I look for.

But I have had cashiers NOT charge me for delivery, and deli guys slip me a little extra, or counter people upgrade my drinks without me asking. And today, instead of having to wait 3 hours or so for a delivery from a store down my street (usually not a problem anyway), one of the guys loaded my boxes onto a handtruck and took them right to my house, and up the stairs. I tipped him well, and thanked him, but he did it because he didn't think I should have to wait. I didn't expect it - I never expect it - but it's nice when it happens.

Comments

The truth is, you're awesome, and they know it. :)

Ah, a little (un)common courtesy pays dividends.

I don't expect it, either, but it is so nice when it happens.

I was raised to use the Four Phrases of Politeness (Please, Thank You, You're Welcome, and Excuse Me) automatically when appropriate, and am trying to raise my kids the same way. I see no reason NOT to be polite, and all sorts of reasons to do so. It's awesome when it produces positive results, and lamentable that everyone doesn't just do so as a matter of course. We'd be a less-stressed and happier society if we all did.

even when my Boy was getting into all sorts of trouble in high school (re-arranging all the letters on the computer lab keyboards...) and not doing his work and getting Saturday detentions, all the teachers told me the same thing: "He's always so polite, but..." so manners do count they kept him from getting into far worse trouble -- and now he's lovely, of course.

I always got compliments on the girls when we were living in Male Levona because they had a smile or hello for everyone and pretty much always said please and thank you.

One of NS's few words is 'doh-da' (Todah).

I smile and either nod my head or say hello to the various local security guards, cashiers and random folks we pass on the street.

I had a teacher in HS and she once siad something that has stuck with me all these years... "It doesn't cost anything to smile".

That is great.

You don't need to offer air kisses/hugs. Just respond if you get them - unless such things bother you.

I love 19th C etiquette books. They're such fun to read.