Most of the time, when somebody breaks one of these unspoken social rules, everybody in the room gives them a dirty look. But we think they deserve much more than that—like a ticket or a fine! Here are 17 unspoken social rules that should be spoken (and written and signed by some law enforcement).
Just because your car is technically within the lines of the parking spot, doesn’t mean anybody can park in the spot next to you. If you park on the edge of your limits, the next person over is forced to park on the edge of theirs so they have enough room to get out of the car. Then the next person is forced to do the same, and eventually, one or several parking spots just disappear. Take one minute to adjust your car!
If you forgot an item, the time to go track it down was while you were still waiting in line—somebody probably would have happily held your spot. But once it’s your turn to check out, you better have everything you need. Don’t ask the cashier (and everyone behind you) to wait while you go grab “just one more thing.” If you need “just one more thing” you should “just” get back in line.
You might have nowhere to be, and love looking in windows, looking up at the sky, and looking at just about anywhere but where you’re walking, but other people have appointments to make. If you’re ambling around aimlessly, do us all a favor and stand far, far off to the side, and be aware of people trying to pass you. Or just, you know, walk with purpose for goodness sake.
You’re not brightening our day by carrying a boom box on your shoulders, or just playing your music straight out of your computer speakers in a coffee shop, opting out of headphones, and making everyone listen. The only audible music that should be allowed in a coffee shop or anywhere outside your apartment or car is the music played on the speakers of that venue.
There is nothing more frustrating than finally finding a parking spot in a busy supermarket parking lot and pulling into it, only to find there is a shopping cart blocking your way. Put your shopping cart back with the others, or at least don’t leave it inside a parking spot.
If you’re sitting in a public place, like a bus or a park bench, and you ask a stranger next to you a friendly question—OK. But know this: if they want to talk, they’ll ask you a question in return. If they do not ask you a question in return, they want to read their book/listen to their iPod/think in peace. So don’t keep asking questions, hoping to engage them.
Yes, it’s annoying that the person in the middle of the isle needs to get up and go to the bathroom in the middle of the movie. But that person could be you. Don’t force them to climb over you and all your belongings. If everybody does that, it takes twice as long to exit the isle and the longer that person takes to get out of the aisle, the more annoying it is. Help them out!
When going places that don’t allow dogs inside, leave your dog at home. You want your dog’s company for the few minutes you’re driving or walking between the grocery store and the dry cleaner and the pharmacy, but your poor dog has to be tied up outside, in an unfamiliar place, where strangers approach him and he doesn’t know if you’re ever coming back. Or worse, he’s left in a hot, cramped car.
Have you ever noticed that people give you the death stare if you’re coughing and sneezing in public? That’s because they did nothing to deserve being exposed to your virus.
For some reason, the moment people get into a hotel, they ditch all courtesies they’d normally pay their neighbors. And yet, you’re closer to your neighbors than ever in a hotel! You share the wall! Just because you’re celebrating something, it doesn’t mean you can bring 12 friends back to the room to drink at 3 a.m. If you wouldn’t do it at home, don’t do it in a hotel.
When you’re having a conversation with someone and they insult themselves—whether they’re being serious or they’re making a self-deprecating joke—you’re supposed to disagree. Tell them, “That’s not true! You’re not insert negative quality here.” You’re not supposed to agree! Even if they’re correct.
Just because your friend invited you and your parents and your cousins to dinner as part of one group does not mean you only have to bring one gift. One measly bottle of wine, when you’re bringing several extra people, does not do the busy host much good.
Anyone who works behind any sort of counter, let that be a bar or a coffee counter, will let you know when they’re ready to help you. Just because they aren’t speaking to another person at the moment doesn’t mean they aren’t busy. If you ask a bartender a question while he’s counting something behind the bar, you’ll make him lose his concentration/mess up the job.
If someone invites you to something that is several weeks away, but for whatever reason you won’t know until the last minute whether or not you can make it, let the person know that right away. That way, they can account for you maybe being there. Don’t expect that you can remain silent until the last minute, say, “I can make it!” and the host will have made enough food for you, set a place for you etc.
If you’re in a loud bar, feel free to be loud. But do not be louder than everyone there. If you’re in a quiet restaurant, even if everybody is whispering and it’s a strain to talk, you whisper as well. If there is just one person in a room being louder than the generally accepted noise level, nobody can enjoy or focus on their conversations.
If you run into an acquaintance while out with a friend, and you’ve forgotten the acquaintance’s name, instead of neglecting to make introductions, or forcing your friend to awkwardly ask the other person’s name, just say, “I’m so sorry—I have to admit I can’t remember your name!” The person will feel far more respected if you do that than if you just neglect to call them by their name at all or make the introduction.
If someone calls you, call them back. Don’t just send a text message or email answering the questions they laid out in their voice message. This makes them feel like you don’t want to talk to them, or they aren’t worth your time.
#1 Macroeconomic Newsletter For Black America
"*" indicates required fields