Being Informal? Or Is It Rudeness?

I am normally up and about before the LOH comes out of the bedroom and on her way to the porch, pops in at the kitchen to say “good morning” while I struggle with our morning cuppa. When I take it to her at the porch, she inevitably says “thank you”. In a normal day, she would thank me, the help and some of our friends to the extent of at least a dozen times. She would also say “sorry” a few times to the same recipients. We have been married for forty years and before that, knew each other for another eight years, and she has always been like this.

It is not as though she is alone in our household who is like this. Our son, brought up excellently by her while I was mostly away from home, does this too. AND, believe it or not, so do I.

It is not that we do this automatically without really meaning it. Far from it. We really mean it and hope that by saying these words, we can convey our gratitude or regret in a sincere manner.

By now, you must be yawning! The point of the post is that these simple courtesies, that we grew up with, seem to be disappearing. Recently, perhaps because of my creeping senility, I have been noticing that the younger crowd simply cannot be bothered. When I pointedly ask about it, I am told that it is passe. What is “in” is informality.

If informality means that one need not be well mannered and polite, I do not want to have any thing to do with it. Unfortunately, informality, perhaps also means insensitivity. While the other person considers being informal as cool, he or she does not have the sensitivity to recognize that the older person is not in the same “band width”. I personally believe that such behavior is not informal, but rude.

While I have been musing about this particular aspect of modern life, I came across an amazing OP ED reflecting on similar thoughts, all the way from New York. Since it is written by a professional journalist, it is much better written and I wish to share it with all of you.

What is your opinion on this development? Do you also come across this often, or am I being paranoid?

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