Today's Saturday Times' article about modern manners got me thinking about my pet peeves. Having had a relatively strict upbringing I pride myself on being quite polite. However, I will admit that my high standards have been slipping. I thought reminding myself about my pet peeves will instill better habits within myself... Maybe.
- Tipping. There isn’t such a consensus on what is appropriate tipping etiquette in England. But I believe it should reflect whether or not you enjoyed the meal and the service. I always leave a tip but it is dependent on the service. My friend left a £5 tip on a £20 meal the other day because he didn’t want to carry round the change despite the fact that the waiters ignored us despite only 3 groups in the whole restaurant about about 5 staff.
- Phones on the table at a restaurant. I may have fallen for this recently but in general I hate people putting their phones on the table at a restaurant whilst we eat. I mean, who is more important than me right now. And then it lights up and we have to pretend that isn’t your mum texting you asking what you had for dinner. Please. Unless you’re a brain surgeon your calls and texts can wait a couple of hours.
- Whatsapp. I have a serious love/hate relationship with whatsapp. With my friends abroad I tend to have a constant ongoing conversation with them which will peak and trough depending on how social we are or whether we are commuting to work at the same time. But I hate it for many reasons. Because people can see if you have “seen” their message and therefore you feel compelled to reply and then to enter into a conversation with them. It’s like that bloody Facebook now which tells me if someone has read my message. Well thanks Facebook for making me question WHY HASN’T HE REPLIED!!!!
- #YOLO . Do you know what? YOLO if you don’t have rent to pay but seriously I have 20 grand’s worth of student loan to pay off and more bills then Destiny’s Child. Don’t tell me to YOLO because I’ll tell you that I’m going to make enchiladas on a Saturday night and you can suck it.
- Cell phones at store counters. I’ve worked in retail. And I tell you, if yapping on the phone whilst ordering your coffee or picking up a pair of jeans is the HEIGHT of rudeness. It’s like climbing on a physical pedestal and talking down to me.
- People who get on the tube before people have got off. Self explanatory and yet people still do it.
- Talking of public transport, passive aggressive commuters. I am one of those people. I hate me. But muttering under your breath is doing no one any favours. And guess what, if that person will push you then that’s just because they are a douche so muttering won’t help them suddenly have an epiphany where they will become Mother Theresa. Don’t let it put you in a bad mood. It’s like sun rises and douchebags, the day will always start with both, whether or not you take it personally is up to you.
- Talking with your mouth full or eating messily. I do struggle with pastry like the best of us but those who eat like a hoover should really learn to aim for their mouths and talk less, if at all, when they eat. To watch meat rolling about in someone's mouth getting masticated is just vile. If you know that you’re going to get rice in your eyebrows then order the salad.
- Talking about the weather. We all do it. It’s in our VEINS, we’re British! But if I have to make idle chit chat about how summer is already over I think I’d rather the earth swallow me up. Let’s get a bit controversial and mix up our “small talk” to big topics. Tell me about child soldiers, nuclear war and everyday sexism, please!
Do you have any pet peeves you just can’t stand? And what manners matter to you in this day and age when the line between what is polite and what is not is blurred?