Sunday, January 13, 2013

The Art Of Manliness

My wife asked me to print an article for her from a website called… TheArtOfManliness

It has nothing to do with what I’m writing about but it did have a lot of articles I enjoyed reading so I thought I would post about it. Click on the banner above to visit the site, it’s a site on how to be a gentleman with honor, a shocking thing to be these days, I’m not saying I agree with everything but it does have a lot that I do agree with.

While growing up I was taught to respect my elders, always open a door for the ladies, NEVER hit a woman (though my father did) to be chivalrous and a host of other things like eating with my mouth closed, manners, waiting for others before I start eating etc... I have heard from so many people and you see it on TV as well, men are different today. Some may say they prefer men who show their feelings like women do (don’t get me wrong, men should be able to, you know what I mean, right?) and a whole host of other things. Like not paying for the meal on a date, not opening a door or eating with their mouth open and holding their fork and knife like an ape.

Today on TV we see commercial after commercial or TV show where the man can barely operate a toaster, check the cars oil, change a light bulb or the horror, wire an electrical outlet without starting a fire, men look like idiots on TV and we laugh. In the commercial “Oven Pride” the motto was “so easy a man could do it”, I’m surprised they didn’t have him drooling on himself. Am I reading too much into it? I don’t think so, seeing a commercial or TV show where the man isn’t a mental midget is rare these days.

Here is an article from MailOnline by Danuta Kean discussing her opinion on the subject. I suspect many women feel the same way. As for men, I don’t know, a few I have asked said we deserve it because of how women were treated in the past. Really? Are men today responsible for how women were treated in the past, that’s like saying we are responsible for slavery or what happened to the American Indian, it’s ridiculous.

I walk to work and I see both men and women show nearly zero regard for their fellow human being. While walking through the train station I was heading for the revolving door when I saw an elderly lady trying to get through the door and nobody let her in, she had a suitcase and couldn’t get through, the whole time I was walking across the lobby she stood there trying to get in. People just pushed their way through, a young guy actually pushed through her and forced her to the side so he could get through, are we so into ourselves we don’t care anymore?

I walked up, jammed my foot in the door to prevent anybody else from turning the door and smiled at the lady and told her she could get through now. She was in tears, the people on the other side of the door were getting angry and pushing on the door, I’m not easy to move when I don’t want to be moved so she got into the revolving door and I slowly allowed the door to revolve so she could keep up with her big bag. When she got out I released the door and the rush of people started again. When I got out she thanked me and I went on my way, that took maybe 30 seconds out of my day.

I don’t tell this story to brag, this is how everybody should be, why aren’t they? I walk about a mile to work, I see many walking through doors and not even checking to see if somebody is behind them or not so the door shuts in somebodies face. Unreal, the ladies are no better, I have had many doors slammed in my face because the person was ignorant of the person behind them and just let the door go. I think one person apologized and it was a lady, men don’t apologize anymore it seems, I’m sure some do, but I haven’t met one in Chicago yet that does, well except for my boss and my co-workers.

Back to the men. Not too long ago if you shook hands you were held to your word and your word was your bond. It meant something, today you mention honor and instead of something to be respected people think of intolerance, hypocrisy or inducing shame. Why is that? Politicians play on the “trust me game”, they have no honor, they have to sell themselves and truth today doesn’t sell. When a politician tells the truth he/she gets near zero interest from the public and the liar gets to office, don’t believe me, look to the current crop on both sides of the isle as proof in the pudding but I digress…

Over time the rules that guided parents in the raising of their kids has changed. Kids had rules and as they proved they could handle more responsibility the rules relaxed a bit, you could stay out later etc… today and of course this doesn’t mean all parents, kids get the run of the house, I am shocked when I see well behaved kids, I don’t see many outside of my family in home situations so I gather my opinion by how kids are treated by their parents in a restaurant. If they get to do as they wish there and act like out of control brats, I assume it’s that way at home. When was the last time you saw well behaved kids in a public setting? Did you take note because it’s unusual?

Narcissism is rampant today, people are out for themselves, parents expect the schools to babysit their kids. If you heard parents during the latest Chicago union strike you know what I mean, it’s no wonder 70%+ don’t graduate and the ones that do can’t sign their name or read at the 3rd grade level or worse.

It’s not just a man thing, although it seems to be more and more popular not to have a man in the picture while raising kids and that’s a society thing, who needs a man anymore? Today we do something simply because it feels good therefore we should go ahead and do it. Restraint is out the door, personal responsibility is out the door. There is always somebody to blame for everything, I’m going to be fifty and I feel like I’m in the wrong time period. I’m not saying we should go back to the Victorian era, but could some of the manners, respect and personal responsibility that was taught “back in the day” make a come back? Is narcissism where it’s all going?

If so we’re doomed, I’m not saying here I have it right, ask my wife, but I do try. It would be nice if as a society we started doing what's right, instead of just what feels good because rarely are they the same thing. Men, open a door for the ladies, or heck for the guy behind you even, tell your wife you love her don’t just plop in front of the TV when you get home and expect catering service, ask her if you can help with something and then, shock her real good by doing it!

The comments should be interesting after this one… Smile


Anonymous said...

My grandfather grew up in Bucklin MO. It is a small farming community and I remember him telling me when I was 16 that in his day things were done on a handshake. Very little business required a lawyer because your reputation was everything. Wouldn't it be nice to return to those values. I do think his generation was the last to enjoy that level of commitment from the majority of their community. Times are different. People don't stay put like used to and are constantly moving, changing jobs, etc. In his area familys lived there for several generations and everybody knew everybody. Now after 13 years I only know a handful of people in our subdivision and that's mostly because our kids played together.
My grandfather would be proud though because I still think to hold the door for the person behind me. But don't ask if I go around to the other side of the car to open the door for my wife. She'll tell you that particular ship has sailed!

Bruce (& Val)

Jackie said...

I think the "it takes a village to raise a child" quotation is wrong.
It takes a family that loves the Lord and does what He has commanded to raise a child. I don't want the village to even THINK about raising my child. The problem is that there are very few family units anymore. The moral decay of our country is showing itself. My Daddy (86) still holds the door for anyone...and my husband (62) does too. My son (36) does the same. I do the same. Manners should be taught at home. Period. I'm so pleased that you stopped that revolving door for the lady. Good for you. The world is in too much of a hurry to get somewhere and many of the people in it will trample over others in order to get there.

Sue and Doug said...

manners seem to have gone by the way side, we are indeed, as a society so self involved that we fail to notice is a real shame!..
we all need to slow down and look around us, everyone has a story and some seem to struggle more than others. It is time to stop and smile at strangers or say hello or like you say hold the door for someone!

Erik's RV Blog * said...

Bruce & Val - My wife would say the same but I do shock her once in awhile by opening her car door. Have to keep her on her toes ya know! ;)

Jackie - Agreed, I walk through Chicago and feel like an outsider. Everybody is in a rush, several times a month I stop along the way and just watch the city go by. I love looking at the buildings and seeing what people are capable of.

I never understood it takes a village, I agree with you, they can stay out of it.

Sue & Doug - Agreed! I smile at people when they walk by, by and large they don't smile back, they look down or they look the other way but once in awhile I get a smile back.

JO said...

Great post Erik,
Yes manners should be taught at home. But most of the parents today don't have any manners so who will teach their children. all this CPS crap today. Yes some children are in very bad homes and need protection. But when they start this crap about don't yell at your kids it's abuse. Don't spank your kids it's abuse. I'm not saying stand there and scream your brains or beat the living hell out of your kids. But they need to know who IS in charge and it surely isn't the kids.
I have many grandchildren. Believe me some are horrible to be around. Today I spent the afternoon with 2 of them and they are the most amazing kids. They have impeccable manners and know how to behave in a restaurant. I am still smiling over our day together. Hats off to their mom.

JO said...

Our blogs are quite similar for yesterday

BJ said...

Don't know how I missed this but I'm glad I went back and read it. I am happy to say I have a husband that opens the doors for me, takes his hat off in public places, He raised his children to be polite and so did I. Sometimes I wonder where the link was broke with the grandchildren though........ Thank you for posting "The Art of Manliness" I'm keeping that one. And isnt it sad that some people don't have enough command of the English language that they have to use vulger language......just sayin.

Anonymous said...

the white man is respensible for slavery killig the indians hurting raping womensand making black peple kill each other. we are breding you out and soon we will out nmber you!

Erik's RV Blog * said...

JO and BJ - Agreed! :0

Anonymous - Seriously, what is it with people who have to have somebody to blame for everything?