Thursday, May 17, 2007

"Yes please, and thank you very much!"

I like politeness. Period. People who are polite, people who say 'thank you', people who will smile when they see you and the likes. By smile-when-they-see-you, I'd like to mention that it's a given that a person you know must get the benefits of your smile. What about someone you don't know? Now I do not mean the absolute stranger you walk past on the road. I do mean a colleague you've never been introduced to, but know of. I do mean someone who stays near your house who you haven't spoken to, but each of you knows of the other's existence.

Indians, as a whole, are not very polite. One could argue that politeness should not be measured in terms of a 'thank you' or a 'please'. True, it is a very culturally biased method of examination. But have you actually not seen the following scenarios in India?
- Someone barging up and trying to get ahead in a long queue.
- [Some] men staring at women in the most unnerving manner.
- [My favourite topic: traffic] Honking beyond necessity, and rushing ahead to overtake with little regard for the vehicles at risk.
- Bumping into someone and rushing off without apologising.
- Answering a phone call mid-conversation without excusing oneself.
- Leaving a phone on loud during a presentation, or say, in the theatre.
- Answering that phone call and making your telephonic conversation known to all.
- Fiddling with the cell-phone while having a conversation with someone [I'm guilty of this one]
- Burping
- Lack of courtesy to, say, the cleaning staff, or the driver who drove you home.
- Chewing out loud (esp. in a presentation!)
.... and then there are some dirty habits that I'd just rather not go into at this point, lest a tirade be launched.

If any of you do any of the above things, firstly, welcome to the club. Secondly, I urge you to try getting out of this club as soon as possible! Really, not something to be a proud member of!

PS. A friend recently made me realise that I have this bad habit of calling out to people not by their names, but with a 'Tchh' sound. Point noted. I'm working on it.


Piyush said...

If i may please be granted the permission to post a comment, this is what i add with all humility : Good point, illustrated with great examples.. Like your writing skills a lot :) Now please, if you permit, I take leave. Thank you for letting me post a comment on your blog..

and Thank you for the other myriad things of life, each not worth mentioning, but as a sum total, they have influenced my life significantly, and taught me many a "lessons of life" :)

Suprita said...

Oh, a couple of days back I was stuck in this slow moving traffic. Wondered what was happening until I reached the traffic light. Guess what. The traffic lights at the inter-section were down, so the cars were actually taking turns crossing the inter-section!! As in, the 1st row of cars on the road to my right would cross, then those on road opposite mine and so on!! Imagine if something like this had happened in India.. The whole inter-section would've been blocked. For hours. Not to mention the kind of language that would've been flung around.

But the all the politeness here gets a little unnerving at times.

PS: For those who don't know, I currently reside in US.

I'm on your 'Blogs I love reading' list. [huge grin]