I've noticed a lot of people lately who are very self-absorbed. I've known people like this in my own life (my sister's husband, for instance), but I've begun to notice it in strangers lately. It seems to be a growing epidemic, people who just pay no mind to the people around them, making sure only their needs are attended to without regard for those around them.
My first instance of this is people who walk off sidewalks to cross streets and don't look both ways. I have seen 1/2 a dozen people in the last month or so do this. They leave a store and just start walking. Straight out into the road, no look to the left or right, just "I'm a pedestrian, and I have the right of way, and you'd better slow down and not hit me" attitude written all over their face. Now I realize as the driver I do need to yield to pedestrians, but come on. I've had to slam on my brakes twice in the last 2 weeks to avoid someone who popped out in front of me, and they never even glanced my way as they strolled past my car. Who does this? (Obviously these people!)
Then there are the people who drive 10 miles under the speed limit because they are on their cell phones or trying to text. It is so infuriating to be behind someone and you can see them looking down, or with the phone to their ear, and they are just moseying along like the road is theirs and nothing matters but their time. Hang up and drive. When you are driving nothing is more important than safety on the road. Those people who walk off curbs without looking might just jump in front of your car, then you'll be screwed.
Then there's the grocery store. You know those people who park their carts right in the middle of the aisle so there is no way to pass them. So you pull up behind their cart, thinking they must see you, thinking they will move their cart sometime today. But no, they continue to stare at the salad dressing while you clear your throat, shift your feet, wonder what the hell is wrong with this person! So then you must ask the person to move or you'll be trapped in the store forever. And then they have the gonads to glare at you and act like YOU'RE inconveniencing them. That's right I forgot, the world revolves around them and I am but a gnat in their world.
Yesterday, while at my local Jewel (a grocery store for those not in the Midwest) I was checking out. My bagger decided 1/2 way through bagging my order to wander off and do something else (must have that self-absorbed gene) so I went to the end of the counter to start bagging my stuff myself to help expedite my exit from the store. I had left my wallet on the little shelf they provide to put your wallet on while you pay. My groceries were still being rung up. Well, the woman behind me decided to push my cart out of the check out line, and push my wallet off the little desk thing and take up residence in the spot I would normally stand in while I write a check to pay. I had fully intended on going back to that spot after helping to bag my groceries. Any normal person would have realized this. It was so bizarre. The checker and I both looked at this woman like WTF? I really was at a loss about what to say to her (my witty comments always come after the fact). I ended up having to reach up from the end of the counter to grab my check book and had to write the check from where I was. It was all so very bizarre. The woman didn't even look at me, just settled herself in the spot where I had been standing just seconds before, and decided it was her time to be there, had her checkbook out, already filling out her check and her order hadn't even been started yet.
WHAT IS WRONG WITH SOME PEOPLE???????
How hard is it take a second and think about how your actions might affect someone else before you take that action? Weren't we taught this growing up? Isn't anyone teaching this to their children? And it's not just young kids acting this way. The woman at the checkout was probably older than me. People I see on their cell phones while driving tend to be all ages (although the text-ers seem to be young). It's called common courtesy people. Do unto others, yadda, yadda, yadda!
I see it as the beginning of the fall of society. And I do think an awful lot of it comes from the entitlement mentality that unfortunatley our current government is enabling. That's a whole other blog post, but you get it. Tell me you get it, please! Tell me you don't walk in front of cars without looking, that you don't text and drive, that you only use your cell phones for emergencies while driving, that you don't park your cart in the middle of the grocery aisle! I need some faith in humanity!
Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter which fork you use.