Sunday, June 06, 2010

Where is the politeness, graciousness of the past?

I’ve often wondered why many people, or most, prefer to avoid phone calls when they please. Of course, it’s nothing new at all. How many times have you tried to reach out to someone in an office only to be told that he or she is in a meeting. You leave your number and expect to be called back later, but that invariably never happens.

It’s especially distressing when people whom you know and trust behave indifferently when they choose to and are bothered in the least about etiquette or manners. You expect them to be the sort of person you are and when they behave the way they do it leaves more than a sour taste in the mouth.

I have often experienced this and every time I hope that somebody will turn out different, he or she goes on to prove me wrong. The sad part is that there are very few in today’s world who bother to acknowledge what you have done for them, who are grateful for small gestures and offerings of help. All that is conveniently forgotten, and in a hurry, too.

One person had the chutzpah to retort once: “You call that help? What kind of help have you done for me?” Another chose to suddenly cut off all links. The stock reply was she was too busy for words and had hardly any time for herself. Text messages evoked no response. Apparently, she would respond only if she wished to, which was hardly ever. There were assurances of “call you back later”, but they were all empty promises, meaningless words. Yet another person, a journalist to boot, would text about a story that was published, for me to read and comment, but would choose not to respond to other things when she felt like. And, yes, there are other journos who just do not bother to reply to emails sent to tip them off about possible stories - not even an acknowledgment.

Ironically, you’d fine these very people reaching out to you, the moment they needed instant help. Strange indeed, and sad, are the ways of today's world. How I yearn for the politeness and graciousness of the past!

1 comment:

Susan Deborah said...

Sad indeed but there is no returning of calls nor messages these days!

However, I echo your thoughts on the return of the politeness and gentleness of yore.

Our tribe though rare is still found in small pockets. Let it grow.

Joy always,
Susan