Rudeness has been on my mind recently. I’ve been trying to come up with an important sociological reason for being rude and why it is so frequently employed in communication and as a general method.
I can’t find any good reason for it
Rudeness gets people’s backs up. It is unpleasant to live around. Rudeness insinuates hierarchy or superiority. Friction and conflict usually result.
Quite simply it is disrespectful.
In my opinion, being rude is ignorant… and that isn’t to say that I am not a perpetrator myself on occasion. I feel ignorant when I do it and I know I let myself down. My own rudeness is usually induced by an individual and their words or behaviour. I’m rarely an instigator. This is no excuse.
I occasionally venture further out into the material world but usually hasten home soon after…
Staff in shops are rude. Coffee purveyors are rude. Folk walking the street are rude. Drivers are rude, cyclists are rude, lorry drivers are rude. Children are rude, teenagers are rude, adults are rude. Everyone is so bloody rude!!!
Now, don’t get me wrong – I’m not a massive fan of the sycophantic and vacuous fakery camp that insists on the cheesy repetition of an insincere, “Have a nice day” etc, either.
Is there no middle ground?
The other day I pulled over in a local village to allow a stream of 12 cars in the opposite direction past me on my side of the road. The drivers? EVERY SINGLE ONE smiled and thanked me.
I lived for a few years in a place where the attitude, and the people who perpetuate it, is the unwanted virus of England. (Much wealth, no manners, total ignorance, pure disrespect) In two and half years NOT A SINGLE human being thanked me or smiled at me for being courteous.
Living in ‘rudetown’ made me a rude and seriously grumpy bitch. To have everything and give nothing is a negative state… living surrounded by this mindset made me question my very existence on this planet and whether a world of humans all aiming for that “dream” is a world worth inhabiting. (BTW it isn’t, FYI) When I assessed the damage I realised that I was at a point where going out in the car to specifically drive slowly around the place, holding people up, became a game of pure pleasure. Watching the anger mount as these spoiled individuals weren’t able to pursue their exact desire at the exact moment they desired it – because of me – became like a drug. Pottering along at the speed limit with a massive grin as they all risked their lives and licences to scream past me in fury only fed my need to make them as miserable as they had made me. The only way to dissipate the constant anger and irritation at being treated so incredibly and constantly unpleasantly, was to wind those mofos up something chronic.
Slow at roundabouts, slow at the lights, let every car that wants out in front of me…
I’d be in that supermarket carpark for just after school time, crawling around, all smiles, as the massive BMW 4×4’s and other flashy rides were trying to muscle their way through with their blond and orange and incandescent occupants swearing at me. Ha Ha Ha.
I even took to standing three feet away from the neighbours blatantly watching them and listening to their conversations…. sometimes for up to an hour. That’s what they did to me.
You can see why I had to get out!
Rudeness is self-perpetuating. It takes all the resolve in the world not to give it back in spades to someone who disrespects you for absolutely no good reason. Very few of us are able to override the basic instinct to retaliate.
So, having gone from the pit of extreme rudeness – which seeps in to your fabric – to the perfect level of politeness and respect – which does the same – I can categorically say;
Manners maketh man (and woman)
Kindness makes the world go round
A smile is worth a thousand words
Rudeness is a ripple effect WMD
To be avoided at all costs