Some of my female readers will understand what I’m about to discuss today. Let me preface my story by saying that good manners are very important to me. In my work with children, along with teaching the alphabet and colours, I make it a point to teach them manners. Please, thank you, no thank you, and calling me by my proper title are all a part of their education. Good manners are a requirement, in my opinion, in a civilised society. Some may say that I’m overly polite, because I say ‘hello, goodbye and thank you’ to my bus driver. Call me crazy, but if this person is doing their job well, taking me to and fro safely, then a little common courtesy is no skin off my nose.
Now, I don’t like to perpetuate stereotypes, tho I do laugh at some of them. However, I am aware of the fact that there are definite cultural differences that do add some truth to various stereotypes.
This brings me to my story. I went this morning to get my nails done. The man and women who work there are from wherever most nail salon folks hail from. I got there early so I had to wait a bit for my nail guy to arrive. One of the ladies had me sit at his work station, which is where I was when my nail guy got there. He came in talking on the phone and walked past me, towards the back room to put some bags away. No problem with that; people need time to settle before they work.
Here’s where things fell apart: he came from the back room, still on the phone and sat down. He continued his conversation (on speaker, so I could hear it too, tho I couldn’t understand), while he looked for his tools to start working on my nails. He didn’t acknowledge me in any way, no “hi” or “good morning”, not even eye contact. After about 5 minutes of talking and prepping, he said, “Give me a minute”. That was it.
Someone else would have been outraged and said something. Being overly polite as I am, I don’t like to make a scene, so I just said, “Ok”. Yeh. So my question is: is this a cultural thing where he’s from, not making eye contact, or excusing yourself while on the phone, to the customer who’s waiting for you? Did I take it too personally? Or is he just ill-mannered?? Yes, I realize this is more than one question, so sorry, please excuse me!
It was a similar thing, a few days ago, when I went to the lab to have a test done. In between explaining to me what to do, the lab technician was texting, yes TEXTING. I was there seeking help for a serious health issue, and this chick was probably chatting about where she went for dinner last night, or what happened on Breaking Bad in the season finale.
Ok. So maybe it’s not a cultural thing, cuz the lab lady was of a different nationality than the nail guy. Not that cultural habits are excusable if they result in you treating people in a less than pleasant way. I dunno. Call me selfish, but I just like to have all of your attention if you’re providing a service that I’m paying for. Silly me. SMH.