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Adventures of a Single Girl: Where Have Manners Gone?

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A while back, I wrote about how Hurricane Sandy seemed to bring out the best in all of us, and that a silver lining in an otherwise horrible situation were the acts of kindness I witnessed. 

I relished the fact that maybe chivalry was not dead. 


Well, I think that ship has sailed. 


I must admit I have had a pretty frustrating week in general, so maybe I am being more sensitive than usually, but I witnessed a lot of unkind behavior this week. 


I wondered, ”Were these people raised by wolves? Did their mothers not teach them manners?”

I was getting on the subway the other day and this man practically mowed me down trying to get into the car ahead of me so he could get to the one empty seat! 

I sit at a desk all day long; the last thing I want to do on my ride home is sit. 


Once you sit on the subway, you run the risk of being trapped next some weirdo – at least standing, you can move! All that energy in competing for the seat, being so rude, was completely for nothing. I didn’t want the damn seat anyway! 


When I made a face and said “excuse you” he gave me a nasty look like I was the rude one.

I am all about being the independent woman. I can carry my bag, open my own door, but it’s nice sometimes to have someone at least offer. 

I don’t mind if I open the door as a man is approaching and telling him to walk through, but just because one guy goes through does not mean it is appropriate for you and your six other male cohorts to walk to through as I stand there I am a doorman! 

When there is a perfectly good second door that you could open and walk through yourself, I don’t think it’s kind that I’m expected to run doorman duties. 

This week got me wondering: “Do men not understand the personal space thing?” This is particularly bizarre to me when it happens on a dimly lit street when there is no one around. I was walking home – it was not late, but was already dark. I never feel unsafe walking around my neighborhood. I am always careful and aware (no, I am not walking home at 4am after a few cocktails), so I feel pretty safe. 

One time, a guy followed me out of the subway and down my street and he seemed to get closer and closer. He did not appear particularly threatening, but did he not realize that it is extremely creepy for a guy to be hovering behind a girl when she is walking alone?. I mean there was no one else around – if I am walking too slow, then pass me; otherwise, back the hell off!

My delving into the male psyche carries over to my work life as well. I work on a predominantly male team and although I am on the senior management team, somehow I get asked to do the most random things (and I suspect because I am a woman). 

Newsflash: it is not my job to determine what to buy their administrators for appreciation days, buy and coordinate gifts for birthdays, congratulations on new babies, or to coordinate pizza lunches for their team. 


I don’t mind helping out, and I have had more than one guy friend who needs help shopping for their girlfriend, but that sort of help at work is inappropriate. 


I actually had a colleague ask me what to write in card once! Do they not have wives, girlfriends, boyfriends? Do I look like their mother? If I wanted kids I would birth them myself, not babysit 40-year-olds! I really don’t think that was in my job description.

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