All Articles Tagged "common courtesy"
Researchers from Sweden’s Uppsala University have recently released some rather interesting findings about the rate of shipwreck survival, which gives insight to our long-held beliefs about the state of chivalry in our modern society.
Analyzing the data from 18 maritime disasters involving 15,000 people from more than 30 nationalities, spanning three centuries, researchers sought to determine if the widespread social norm of ‘women and children first’ actually gave women a better chance at survival in maritime disasters. However, what they discovered was that despite the long-held belief, women had a distinct survival disadvantage compared to men. More specifically, the study shows that women survived only 17.8 percent compared to men, who survived 34.5 percent. Ironically, while it is also a commonplace belief that the captain goes down with his ship, this study has revealed that the captain and the crew were 18.7 percent more likely to survive than passengers. And this all just solidifies why I have no intention of getting on a cruise anytime soon.
However, according to Hank Campbell, writer for Science 2.0 magazine, this study of maritime wrecks reveals just how un-sexist men really are. Campbell writes, “Modern sailors are not knocking women out of the way and getting on lifeboats during today’s shipwrecks because they are less chivalrous, they do it because they are less sexist.”
So the dude who almost knocked me down while trying to enter a door that I was exiting from, only did so because he felt we were equals? Ironically enough, I rarely see this sort of equality happen between two dudes. Hell, if one dude steps on another dude’s sneaker – intentional or accidental – he might catch a beat down. Because you know, that’s a sign of disrespect.
However, nothing about this study or the Science 2.0 column surprises me. It wasn’t that long ago that the cowardly captain of an Italian cruise ship not only abandoned the ship as it sank off of Italy’s coast, but also refused to go back to help save passengers stuck on the sinking ship even after being ordered to. And how could we forget the father of the year, who “heroically” jumped over a balcony, darted out the theater and into his truck, while his baby mom and their two children fended for themselves against a deranged gunman, begging the question: What would Batman really do?
Yes, I have long suspected that chivalry is a dying tradition. Historically speaking, chivalry was the traditional code of conduct used by those in the knighthood. Over time, its meaning had been expanded to include courteous social gestures given by gentlemen, usually directed at women, such as opening doors and pulling a chair out for a lady. However, these traditions seem to have been abandoned. Collectively it seems that many men folk have taken the “every man for himself” approach to traditional “act-rightness.” Besides pushing past you through a door, I have seen dudes, mostly young men, walk past a woman struggling up some stairs with a stroller without even offering assistance. I have seen men seated comfortably on a bus, not even yield a seat to an elderly woman. I have even been the recipient of parking spot theft at a mall from some smudge dude, who reckless eyeballed me like I was the one who was taking him to child support court. There is a lot of pent up hostility with the younger guys and it is getting worse from generation to generation.
Hello. How are you? And what the hell is your problem?
That is what I always want to say to you individuals who walk into the office of my job, the home of my mother (as a guest of a sibling or other family members), or who I KNOW I’ve met on a different occasion who probably remember me too, BUT DON’T SPEAK. No “Hello, I’m looking for…” no “Hey, how you doing?” and not even a doggone head nod that without words still shows you acknowledge those around you. Cat got your tongue?
Allow me to blow off some steam real quick. I don’t know about anybody else, but my mother always taught me that when you walk into other people’s homes, or anything that doesn’t belong to you and find yourself exposed to others, you should be ready and willing to throw a greeting someone’s way. And movies like Don’t Be A Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice In The Hood taught me, in simpler yet hood-complex terms, that fools need to make themselves known when they roll up in someone’s spot. Point. Blank. Period.
Yet and still, I’ve watched in awe as the friends of my nieces and nephews waltzed into my mother’s home on Thanksgiving evening and barely opened up their mouths as they made jokes that only my niece could hear. I’ve watched people with a false sense of entitlement walk into an office full of folks and just start waltzing around, staring into glass offices, looking for people like they own the place instead of simply saying, “Hi, sorry to bother you, but I’m looking for ___.” Instead, somebody has had to end up saying, sometimes in a hostile manner, “CAN I HELP YOU!?”
And who else has tried to smile, wave or say hello to someone they’ve worked with on a project, met at an event, know through mutual friends and more, only to have them play you like Boo Boo The Fool? My first full-time job and whole college experience was filled with moments where I would slave over a project with a classmate, joke about the most random of things in the process and get a good grade together, only to have that individual pass me at the gym, walking on campus, or in a new class and pretend they hadn’t seen me before and didn’t know me from Adam. Sadly, I can count about one person (outside of the black people I worked with in Afro-American Literature classes only because of a lack of diversity) who actually made a conscious effort to greet me and talk like we were old friends outside of assignments. What’s more sad is, he’s become one of those Anti-Obama ranters who acts a damn fool on Facebook and make me wonder if I should delete them from my friends list quickly and quietly before November…And don’t get me started on the folks that sit next to you in cubicles but will see you on the street and be ready to walk in the opposite direction.
I’m not asking for a “HEY GIRL HEY!” or something over-the-top, stereotypical or something that requires me to divulge everything that has happened in my life since I last saw you, but Lawd knows I hate trying to be the bigger person to say hello to a phony baloney individual who tried to walk past me with their head down on the sly like our eyes didn’t meet. Nor do I appreciate having to ask a guest who they are when they are walking up into my ish, or place of work. I know technology has made a few folks scary about having human interaction and you’d prefer to text me “hello,” but lack of home training also lends itself as a reason why anyone would find this behavior okay. It’s not the end of the world if you don’t speak, but it sure as hell is rude. Please, do better.
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Men aren’t stupid. Even fatherless, Trick Daddy-looking clones know what they are supposed to do. It doesn’t take a Harvard MBA to open and close car doors. What it does take, however, are seemingly desirable qualities.
Chivalrous behavior is no longer the norm, because it is not required. Gone are the days when women expected men to open, hold and close doors for them. Many would rather do it themselves to demonstrate their “independence.” Others (due to absent fathers and/or negative experiences) don’t know where to set their expectations; consequently, not setting any at all. Men adhere to what is demanded of them, which is the reason some women are professional jump-offs while others keep getting wifed.
Wondering why men don’t court you with class? You may be guilty of the following:
An average day can be made that much more pleasant or painful depending on how you’re treated in trivial interactions with both acquaintances and strangers alike. You won’t catch me flipping out over much, but poor customer service is enough to get the expletives flowing out of me like an Eminem single. These days, people would rather mind their business than mind their manners, which unfortunately means that common courtesy is growing increasingly more uncommon. You don’t have to sacrifice keeping it real in order to not be rude. Check out a few ways to add a bit of courtesy into each day: