The Phrase That Pays (in Good Karma and Peace of Mind for the Both is Us)

Another workout had been successfully completed, and my clothes were, at this point, plastered to my skin by the accumulation of sweat. The satisfaction of the hard work I had put in had left me with a bubbly feeling. My mind was clear, a smile was beaming on my face. We were on our way out of the gym when something very unsettling occurred. A man and what I believed to be his five children (hopefully they were his) trailed behind me. As I always do when I see that I am not walking unaccompanied, I held the door. He walked in the doorway, paused, and legitimately turned around to talk to one of his youngsters. No joke. Mid doorway, did not say one “thank you” nor did he even acknowledge that the door wasn’t, in fact, holding itself. I was honestly infuriated. After what felt like a good 2 minutes or so, they managed to all squeeze their way through without a single word. Angry now, I turned and yelled, “you’re welcome, sir”. He then turned, glared as if I had been the one overstepping some boundary (HOW DARE I HOLD THE DOOR?! How classless!), and continued walking.

Why is it so incredibly difficult to acknowledge that someone, a stranger, is consciously doing something nice for you, when they could just as easily take the door, wait until you’re about to go through, and send it forcefully back in the hopes of smacking you in the face just for sh*ts and grind? I mean, realistically speaking, I probably wouldn’t do that. But why is it so difficult to give a half of a breath (not even!) to show that you’re not taking the action for granted? I’m a total germaphobe so if I open a door in a public place (which I do often), that’s a pretty big thing. I’m obviously not doing it for my health.

I used to think that “etiquette school” was a thing of the past, but I have to wonder if it actually is. Why is it that humanity has to be retaught to people who consider themselves “human“?

What’s your take?

3 responses to “The Phrase That Pays (in Good Karma and Peace of Mind for the Both is Us)

  1. That is ridiculous. I don’t blame you in the least for being incensed. I’ve spent a lot of time with my 2 kids on manners. They both hold the door for people (if it is an old person or someone with their hands full, they will run up to the door). But saying THANK YOU is a really big one. SOMEONE should have thanked you. At the very least, the father.


    • Exactly! It was even as much so about me needing a “thank you” and much as just being decent. A head nod would’ve sufficed. Just wanna know if people still have the ability to care….
      I think it’s great that you’re teaching your kids to do those kinds of things. There are so many kids that I know that have no recollection of that kind of discipline in their childhood, which is worrying for future, younger generations. If they’re not learning it now, when will it ever be learned? Certainly not in adulthood.


      • Probably not. I wanted to say, but my laptop began acting up, that the dad could have used saying thank you to you as a teachable moment for all the kids. It’s too bad so many parents are so self-absorbed. They will be sorry when they are old and ill and in need of compassion. Let us hope the children learn the importance of respecting others at some point in their lives. Good for you for pointing it out.


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