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  #1  
Old 02-01-2017, 08:10 AM
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enviousdominous enviousdominous is offline
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Default Discourteous Courtesy

To be courteous is to recognize when someone would benefit from an effort on your behalf to aid in whatever struggle they may be having. You open the door for someone who has their hands full, you let someone ahead of you in line at the grocery store if they only have a few items, you back off if someone needs to merge into your lane.

It feels good to be generous with your patience and maturity, but then there's the flipside to this idea. Since being courteous feels good, one might feel insulted if someone doesn't comply with their courtesy.

Lucky for me, I've been a witness to most of these events and haven't had to go ape on any of the assholes I'll elaborate on.

Driving on an on-ramp:

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So I'm driving on an on-ramp and a vehicle in front of me is driving the speed limit, which for most of us is pretty slow. I chose to also drive the speed limit and maintain a few car lengths between myself and the person in front of me. We're coming up to the highway (it's a very long on-ramp) and a jeep, full of what I imagine were frat boys, going pretty fucking fast, suddenly slows down to be in the space I left between myself and the other vehicle. That's fine, except that the vehicle in front of me wasn't merging over, as if to allow the jeep to keep going fast (in the slow lane, mind you) as it was doing. The driver of the jeep waves his arm frantically for the car to merge in front of him, to no avail. So every guy in that jeep waves their arms frantically outside of the vehicle in a frustrated manner, and eventually the car does indeed merge in front of them. So yeah, it really hurt their pride that this car wouldn't honor their asinine attempt at being courteous.


Walmart shoppers:

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So I'm in Walmart to stock up on Marie Callender meals, and I'm waiting in the express lane. An older gentleman is in line in front of me, but second in the line itself. Our line is going slow, and the other express land ends up moving very quickly. A woman, shopping in her nurse scrubs, is second in line at the other line when the person in front of her finishes their transaction. She looks at the older man and says "Sir!" while motioning with her head for him to move to her line. He didn't hear her. So she does the classy thing and shouts in a very angry tone "SIR!", startling the fuck out of everyone in line. The woman working at that checkout decides to join in, and shouts "THIS LINE IS OPEN SIR!" in a rude tone. At this point it occurred to the older gentleman that he was the one they were shouting at, and he obliges by going to the open counter. The clerk and the woman in the nurse scrubs huffed with frustration.


Crossing the street:

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So this one just happened to me. I work in an area where the speed limit is 15 miles an hour, probably due to people crossing often. I was walking to the road, and an individual in a truck was waiting for someone farther ahead to cross from a different direction so he could make a left turn. Basically, he was in front of me, so it would have been silly of me to be impatient and skirt around his truck. I make that point because while he was waiting, a car apparently stopped in the lane going the other way behind the truck. When the truck moved, I realized that the car was there also and looked the other direction just to make sure there was no other traffic coming. When I look back, this car is still there with traffic backed up behind it. The car has tinted windows, and I was able to make out a guy very angrily motioning for me to cross. I gave him a look of "What the fuck are you doing?", and he kept on motioning for me to cross. I crossed and gave him a patronizing thumbs up as I did.


A few points I'd like to make:

Some of us indulge in being generous, and there are times when our generosity makes a huge difference in someone's life or even in their disposition for that day. Part of being a good generous person, is knowing when to BACK OFF. While it's nice to be given things every now and then, some people pride themselves on their independence and some people genuinely enjoy a struggle every now and then.

While some people celebrate the label of "asshole", I haven't met anyone who would verbally exclaim that they're a fucking idiot. When people can't possibly walk back an offer they've made in regard to being courteous due to circumstances that didn't originally occur to them, they've left the realm of being a self-aware asshole and crossed into fucking idiot territory. It's not a grudge for me to remember the face of a fucking idiot and know that any interactions I may ever have with them should reflect that, it's called a survival instinct.
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Last edited by enviousdominous : 02-01-2017 at 08:13 AM.
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Old 02-02-2017, 12:24 PM
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Барбоса Барбоса is offline
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Default

I have mentioned my dislike of American-style customer service but this feels like the place to mention it again.

The jovial politeness of shop assistants and waiters/waitresses comes across as so disingenuous that it seems to me to be a type of rudeness. The assumption is though that this kind of hand-holding "do you need any help?" sales chaperoning is exactly what American customers want (or at least have become accustomed to).

Does no one go into a Target or Wal-Mart in America to simply browse? Do they always demand help from staff? Are they really that lazy or pushed for time?

When I am browsing in a shop I want to be left alone to actually browse, not be asked six times if I need/want any help.
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Old 02-02-2017, 01:00 PM
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enviousdominous enviousdominous is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Барбоса View Post
When I am browsing in a shop I want to be left alone to actually browse, not be asked six times if I need/want any help.
I think it's partly a cultural love of being patronized thing, and partly a desire to prove to their superiors that they're earning their paycheck thing.

The US is a very low-context culture, that likes to fake being a high-context culture when it's concerned with how much money you feel like spending. It just looks wasteful to me that Walmart is paying someone to stand at the entrance and offer me a shopping cart that I would have grabbed already if I really needed one.

The absolute worst offenders are those idiots who work in cell phone kiosks at the mall. I don't know if it's still as bad, because I honestly haven't been in a mall since 2012. But I remember that they would use just about any low-brow tactic to bait the elderly into conversations, "Do you have kids?" "Do you have pets?" etc.
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