Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Gentility Lost

This post is a bit of a departure for me.
I usually don’t like to discuss issues.
But something has caught my attention . . .
My daughter, son-in-law, and their children enjoy attending Cosplay exhibitions.
They get quite involved, creating costumes for their entire family, interacting with like-minded people.
Tons of fun.
At a recent gathering, my SIL saw a couple that he is acquainted with.
I stress that he knows these two people.
But only in a ‘Hi, how are you doing!’ sort of way.
He had seen them at a recent Cosplay fair and they had been dressed as a coordinated couple.
At this show, the one partner was dressed as they had been before.
The other was in something different.
Innocently, my SIL asked this person why she wasn’t in her matching costume, especially as there was a contest.
Loudly, and blithely, she informed him – and anyone else who happened to be standing nearby - that she couldn’t wear that costume this weekend because she was, and I quote, “Having her period!”
My SIL was embarrassed. He mumbled something, took his little girls and left.
Do we share too much?
Is there nothing that is personal? Or private?
Or special?
In our efforts to prove that thinking people can discuss anything, have we lost our gentility?
That thin slice of refinement that sets us apart from the less intelligent creatures of the earth?
I’ve watched my dog greet others at the dog park. They have, quite literally, no secrets.
If they can sniff it out, they will.
And do.
And they are quite happy sharing.
Have we reached this stage? When we can (and will) blurt out anything.
Anything.
Have the words: refined, courteous, gallant, cultured, polite, discrete been discarded in favour of (so-called) freedom and independence and equality.
Have we lost our gentility?
What are your thoughts?

10 comments:

  1. "Mom called them 'manners'." ... I call them manners, too. Or common courtesy, similar to common sense. But maybe they're not all that common anymore :(

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh wow, that's a toughie. On the one hand it is a natural thing, but then again so are so many other things I really don't want to hear about... I do agree with you though. Gentility, like darning, has gone from our society. BB2U

    ReplyDelete
  3. There is no 'fineness' of life anymore. Everything is coarse now. The language one hears everywhere...the conversational content...the dress...everything. Some may call good manners and etiquette fake/phoney/put on but I still like it. It raises us above the beasts and gives us something to strive for.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Maybe she was having a bad PMS day? I'd like to think that people are not generally so rude, but then again I learn too much everyday! I just can't imagine someone saying that to my SIL his face and neck would be red for a month! Can anyone say TMI!? Poor guy not to mention the kids!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I like Jenny- o's and Delores's comment they nailed it. B

    ReplyDelete
  6. Yes, gentility is lost, or at least fast disappearing, and I'm not at all happy about it.
    I'm not comfortable hearing such things from almost strangers and blurted out in public only makes it worse.
    We, are definitely over-sharing and despite what all those modern young women think, this is not a good thing.
    I would have said "I spilled coffee on it" or maybe, " I caught it on something and ripped a hole in it."

    ReplyDelete
  7. I'm with you...too much unnecessary information. We all know it's a fact of life without someone advertising it in a room full of people. Most uncouth.

    ReplyDelete
  8. There's a lot of over-sharing out there... and the sad thing is that most of it will be available for forever on the internet via FB, etc.

    ReplyDelete
  9. There are some things that others simply do not need to know, and if they must be discussed, really only should be spoken about with trusted female friends who are old enough to understand. The thing that has attracted my attention lately though is the lost arts of table manners. Certainly, there are some things I do not see the point of... Who cares exactly which fork I use? There are other things, though, which should apply everywhere, and not just at the table. If you make rude noises, whether involuntary or not, and someone notices, it is still polite to say "excuse me." Perhaps someday I shall find an updated version of the old Miss Manners books.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Good grief! Tacky! I don't know why people have such an aversion to manners now. We were on a bus once and it got crowded and there were no more seats. A woman got on and I gave my son a raised eyebrow (he was nine and still in training) my son got up and said "You can have my seat." To a woman who was standing. She said "Oh no honey you sit." He looked at me. I shook my head. He said. "That's okay. You can have it." Again she said. "No you sit down honey." I looked at her and said. "Ma'am I'm trying to teach him to have manners. You really need to sit down." She was so shocked. She sat down quickly and thanked him. We proceeded to have a conversation about manners and why they are important.

    ReplyDelete

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