Have Please and Thank You become an alien language?

@DWDavis (17696)
Pikeville, North Carolina
July 12, 2019 1:58pm CST
Today I had to stop by the grocery store to pick up a couple of things I forgot yesterday. I had to go to the hardware store anyway the grocer is on the way home. Plus, it gave me an excuse to take myself out for a quick lunch. Since I only needed to check out two items at the grocery store and the line at the one open register with a store associate scanning items had a long line, I caved and did the self-checkout. The young lady monitoring the self-checkout registers warned me that the machine I was about to use had been acting quirky all day. I decided to give it a shot anyway. All went well until it was time to pay. The machine locked up and told me to find help. I turned and said to the store associate, "Please, it's asking for you." She beamed a big smile at me and rushed right over to help. When I was leaving, I stopped and thanked her for her help. The look of surprise on her face at being thanked both delighted and distressed me. Do people so rarely thank those who help them these days that when someone does it means so much to the person being thanked? Have Please and Thank You become obsolete words in English or any Earthly language? Do you still say Please and Thank You to retail store associates who help you, cash you out at the register, or serve you in a restaurant?
22 people like this
21 responses
@FourWalls (20017)
• United States
12 Jul
I was talking to a musician friend of mine after a show one night, and I joked about making a Subway employee’s head explode by using the words, “yes, sir/ma’am, may I please....”. My friend laughed, then said, “Don’t you think it’s incumbent on them to use those words to you as part of the privilege of being older?” I replied, “We are the last generation absolutely taught to use those words. If we don’t use them, they’ll become extinct.” I’ll hold the doors open, say “excuse me” if I think I’m blocking someone, and say “please” and “thank you” all the time.
4 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
Some young people seem so surprised when you are polite to them Sadly, there are too many of us older folks who won't say please and thank you to their servers or the store associates helping them. These are the parents whose kids show no manners or respect because they don't learn it at home.
2 people like this
• United States
13 Jul
@crossbones27 i'm a married woman.i've earned ma'am. it's "girl" that pisses me off.i'm a bit older than "girl" by now.
3 people like this
• Redlands, California
13 Jul
@scarlet_woman They always said makes them think of their mother. I guess depends how much you liked your mother. I have no problem and indeed did earn that and why I was like that is so disrespectful and why society falling apart. Shows you give a crap and basically you telling me you do not give a crap. I do have a shirt that says "In memory of when I cared." I stopped caring because society stopped but did I really? I do not know if I know how and if that day does come, everyone better stay out of my way. This crap needs to get back on track or else we going no where and no one wants to see me pissed off.
2 people like this
• Lenox, Georgia
12 Jul
I absolutely say those words and leave people feeling cared about when I go somewhere. Sad that it's uncommon. =(
4 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
12 Jul
When I go out and someone helps me, if I can't leave them with a smile, I feel like I've let them down. I've always taught my sons and my students that courtesy is free to give but the rewards you feel in your own heart are priceless.
4 people like this
• Lenox, Georgia
12 Jul
@DWDavis I absolutely agree with you but we are also called to be an example of Jesus...which is amazing so i love showing God's love. =)
1 person likes this
@Dena91 (5802)
• United States
13 Jul
I was taught to say please and thank you as well as yes sir/mame no sir/mame. The other week I said yes mame to a younger person than me and she said I haven't heard that before. She said she is normally talked down to working in the public. I think it is a generational thing because I don't hear many younger folks with simple manners anymore.
3 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
Simple courtesy does seem much rarer these days. And if the kids aren't using manners, you know it's because their parents failed to teach them.
2 people like this
@cperry2 (1413)
• United States
13 Jul
I almost always use both in face to face conversations. Often I will use them here on the net as well. And you are right some people act like no one has ever thanked them before and they are genuinely touched that someone showed them a tiny consideration.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
I am always amazed at the grace one can share with a simple thank you to someone who is working hard or having a bad day.
2 people like this
@cperry2 (1413)
• United States
13 Jul
@DWDavis I go beyond this thank you and please though, I open the door for others, male, female, makes no difference. I saw a man in a line in front of me at the post office drop a one dollar bill, I pointed it out to him and I though the man's chin would hit the floor. He was so shocked that someone would do that. I mean we go through this world and there are so many people and we do not know them. It costs me absolutely nothing to extend politeness, courteous, and a smile. I hope that it brings a ray of sunshine into their life, it certainly lends warmth to mine.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
@cperry2 I am heartened to learn you practice kindness and courtesy towards all.
1 person likes this
@rakski (33950)
• Philippines
13 Jul
I always try to say please and thank you, I want my kids to see that I am doing that so they will do it too
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
Children will only be as well behaved and respectful as they see their parents acting. You are setting a good example.
2 people like this
@rakski (33950)
• Philippines
13 Jul
@DWDavis It is important for the young ones how the adult act, right?
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
@rakski It is very important. Children will learn much more from watching what you do than listening to what you say.
1 person likes this
@rebelann (50965)
• El Paso, Texas
13 Jul
I live in a military town and I hear both all the time. Military folks are always polite and they raise their kids to be polite, thankfully.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
I was an Army sergeant and live in an Air Force town. The military personal all call me sir when they talk to me until we get to know each other and become friends and are on a first-name basis. I still feel uncomfortable when a full-bird colonel or a general call me 'sir.' I have learned to stop saying, "You don't have to call me 'sir,' I'm a sergeant. I work for a living."
1 person likes this
@rebelann (50965)
• El Paso, Texas
14 Jul
Yeah, sometimes the polite ways are just a wee bit overdone @DWDavis
1 person likes this
@sophie09 (8485)
• Indonesia
13 Jul
yes of course i still say it. im sure, they will be happy and glad to hear that from us
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
You are helping set an example for others to follow.
2 people like this
@sophie09 (8485)
• Indonesia
13 Jul
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (56776)
• Gainesville, Florida
13 Jul
Thank you for writing about this, and please continue spreading the word on the importance of good manners! And yes, I always say please and thank you. It goes a long way to helping you get the service you deserve from store employees and others you encounter throughout the day. Kind words, and a smile. Those two things usually go a long way.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
It is so easy to be pleasant, say please and thank you, and show respect and appreciation.
2 people like this
@moffittjc (56776)
• Gainesville, Florida
13 Jul
@DWDavis I agree with you. It's very easy to do so. I actually find it's hard work to be rude, grumpy, and disrespectful. I wonder why so many people put in so much hard work being buttheads when it is so much easier to smile and be polite and courteous?
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (164246)
• Bunbury, Australia
13 Jul
I'm always saying please and thank you. The other thing I've noticed is that, if we post a gift to someone, usually a younger person, there is never an acknowledgement. We wouldn't know if the present got there or not, let alone being thanked for it. I think it's a bit rude as well as being sad. It was always drummed into us to write a note and say thank you. We didn't have a phone when I was young.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
And a thank you note doesn't have to be long. A small card and a simple acknowledgment of the gift is much appreciated by the giver. With my students, I try to be an example of this. When I receive a gift from a student, I try to get a thank you note to them by the end of the day.
2 people like this
@JudyEv (164246)
• Bunbury, Australia
13 Jul
That's a great idea. Hopefully the impression it makes will encourage to do likewise should the need arise.
2 people like this
@much2say (35677)
• United States
12 Jul
I do say please and thank you . . . and I make sure my kids have that in their vocabulary and use it too. I am seeing adults not saying please or thank you, so of course their kids don't say it either. People's manners are atrocious these days!
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
It may not be polite of me, but I have been known to utter a sarcastic "You're Welcome" to someone who forgets to thank their server. I occasionally get looks, but being 6'3" and 250 lbs, not many will challenge me on correcting their inconsiderate behavior.
2 people like this
@much2say (35677)
• United States
14 Jul
@DWDavis I would love to be able to do that . . . certainly that kind of sarcasm runs through my head but I don't know that I could actually do it. Living where I do, I do get concerned that it could turn into a confrontation gone bad - people can be rash and unreasonable - even violent. You're over a foot taller than me and I'm about 110 lbs . . . yes, a shrimp .
1 person likes this
@CarolDM (32754)
• United States
12 Jul
I still say those words every day but less and less people do. It is a crazy rude world out there.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
What amazes me are the people who tell me I'm overly polite to servers and retail workers, and then those same people seem mystified when I get great service and extra attention.
2 people like this
@CarolDM (32754)
• United States
13 Jul
@DWDavis They need to step back, get off their phones, and do more listening to learn manners.
1 person likes this
@Corbin5 (149360)
• United States
12 Jul
Oh yes, saying "please" and "thank you" are a must for me.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
Growing up, it was expected at home, in school, in church, at your friends' houses, and in public. It seems society has lowered the bar.
2 people like this
@Corbin5 (149360)
• United States
13 Jul
@DWDavis Yes, we were taught proper manners at a very early age and were in a bit of trouble if we forgot our manners.
1 person likes this
@paigea (24385)
• Canada
12 Jul
I always thank people who assist me. I was leaving the theatre the other night and an employee was telling everyone to enjoy their evening. Most people were replying to her to enjoy her evening.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
That is nice to hear. But then, you wonderful Canadians have always been much more polite and civilized than us Americans.
2 people like this
@paigea (24385)
• Canada
13 Jul
@DWDavis I met plenty of friendly people travelling in the US. There are rude people everywhere, we can only refuse to be influenced by them.
1 person likes this
@wolfgirl569 (18109)
• Marion, Ohio
12 Jul
I try to most times. But the world is full of those who think they are royalty anymore.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
A whole generation of young people has been raised believing they are entitled and should have to ask please and say thank you. I dissuaded my sons of that notion early on.
2 people like this
@JohnRoberts (85122)
• Los Angeles, California
12 Jul
A lot of civility has gone by the wayside.
2 people like this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
We have been on a downhill slide when it comes to courtesy and respect for decades. And the farther we slide, the faster we slide.
2 people like this
• United States
13 Jul
the last two generations except for the rare few have no manners whatsoever. i almost smacked somebody yesterday for damn nearly crashing into me at the store.and he knew damn well i was standing there.
1 person likes this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
Generations X, Y, and the Millenials by and large have been raised to believe they are the best, smartest, most capable, most deserving, and most entitled humans to ever live on the planet while at the same time they were constantly reassured that their mistakes were all someone else's fault and they weren't responsible for anything they did or that happened to them. All through school, they got "good" grades for minimal effort and their parents ran interference for them to ensure they never knew disappointment or failure. Is it any wonder so many of them are self-centered and care about only what they want or where they are going?
1 person likes this
• United States
14 Jul
@DWDavis i am generation X-and they never let us skate.in fact,my school added 2 grades-"S" for satisfactory and "U" for unsatisfactory-which was worse than having an F. to top it off,your report card was a nice neon orange if you got a U,so if you made the mistake of opening the envelope in class,all the other students could see you flunked. i've heard they're since not allowed to shame a kid like that anymore.
1 person likes this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
14 Jul
@scarlet_woman Your story is the exception and not the rule I fear. Did you attend a private school?
1 person likes this
@DianneN (122377)
• United States
16 Jul
Please and thank you are natural responses to us. It’s a no brainer.
1 person likes this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
16 Jul
Our generation was raised to say these as a matter of course. In some families, this is still true. However, I've taught a large number of children who don't use these or other courtesy words. What's worse, I've been told by parents that they nor their child should have to ask please or say thank you for anything because they're entitled to what they get.
1 person likes this
@DianneN (122377)
• United States
16 Jul
@DWDavis Yikes! I’ve taught my children and students to say please and thank you, among other things, but never once heard that.
1 person likes this
@moonandstars (19184)
• Zagreb, Croatia (Hrvatska)
14 Jul
I do that automatically just, many times, I observe they don't say these things back or just say some of the words so, sometimes I found myself regretful of doing that. I have a feeling it became common for me to say that, and they expect that but, not the other way round, unfortunately. I'm glad for you, though
1 person likes this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
15 Jul
I hope you continue to show courtesy and kindness. Those who don't reply with the same courtesy are the ones who need to hear it most.
1 person likes this
• Zagreb, Croatia (Hrvatska)
17 Jul
@DWDavis That sounds very wise and mind opening. Thank you
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (230439)
• Switzerland
13 Jul
I say please, thank you and "have a nice day" when I go away, all the time. When I do a favor to someone and I do not hear "thank you" I say anyway (loud) "you are welcome".
1 person likes this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
I do like you're style.
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (230439)
• Switzerland
13 Jul
@DWDavis It does not take a lot of effort to be polite.
1 person likes this
@crossbones27 (26007)
• Redlands, California
13 Jul
Yes, people rude, and say I write to much in comments. How is that?
1 person likes this
@DWDavis (17696)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
13 Jul
If you could shorten that up for me, I'd appreciate it.
1 person likes this
• Redlands, California
13 Jul
1 person likes this