Monday, June 14, 2010

A Tale of Two Gentlemen and the elevator ... and two planes

Dear Manners Fans,

Last week, I had two almost identical manners moments that I wanted to share with you.

I was traveling for work and stayed several days in a hotel. The first morning while I waited for the elevator to arrive at my floor, a young man joined me. We exchanged a glance and slight smiles. The elevator arrived. As soon as the door opened he pushed past me to get inside first and push his button for the lobby. Surprise, that's where I was going, too! Dead silence filled the elevator as we traveled down, where we both arrived at the same time.

The second morning as I waited for the elevator, another man joined me. We exchanged a glance and slight smiles. The elevator arrived. When the door opened, he smiled and held out his hand for me to go first. We chatted as we traveled downstairs. Surprise, we got there at the same time ... and in a much better mood.

Now, I am really not a stickler. I'm equal opportunity -- I don't insist men open the door for me and I let my fair share of men go before me -- but the first gentleman was just so blatantly rude. For no reason. He didn't get anywhere first -- just seemed completely miserable and discourteous.

Speaking of trying to get there first, you may remember a post from awhile ago where I wrote about how people try to rush off the airplane. Well, when it was my turn to go, I had to stop to pull my bag out of the overhead bin. I waived the woman behind me to go ahead and she gave me a big smile and planted herself there in the aisle and said for me to take my time -- she loved making sure all those eager beavers didn't stampede the rest of us.

Wasn't that refreshing!
And isn't that what good manners are -- looking out for others and treating people the way you want to be treated?

Two men and an elevator ... and two plane disembarqements -- almost identical but different in the worst and best ways.

It's not always fun or popular or easy, but making the choice for good manners will always make you and others feel good.


P.S. Our Goodreads Giveaway for It's Time for Good Manners! ends tomorrow and has close to 900 entrants! I am very excited.