Manners Matter

We’ve all made this mistake at some point. We accidently let the door shut on someone, or we offend someone with something we said with no intentional malice. Hopefully, if you are a proper human being, you eventually recognize your error and try to fix it.

There are a few things, however, that go unnoticed as being rude, especially on the college campus level. Here are a few:

1) Push your chair in after class, after eating or after getting up in general. I understand you’re in a hurry to get to your next class, but this is college, not preschool. Nobody should have to face an assault of pulled out chairs to get a seat at the BLUU.

2) If someone is trying to be nice, don’t reject them. Whether he or she grabs you a cup so you can get a drink, or holds the door for you, don’t be that person that says, “No, I got it myself.” That’s like telling your grandma, “Thanks for making dinner grandma, but I’m eating out tonight.” The person obviously made some sort of effort to help you out. Even if you could have done it yourself, it still is a little offensive to the person to deny them that opportunity.

3) Don’t be that kid in the class who asks questions just to ask them. It’s excellent for you to ask questions if you don’t understand something in class. After all, someone else might have the exact same question. It’s also great if you want to add to the discussion in a class that’s discussion-based. But please, if it’s a class for beginners, stop bringing up advanced topics that no one else in the class understands or cares about. We get it. You’re smart and you know a lot about what’s being talked about in class. Wait until after class or during office hours to talk to the professor about it.

4) In the same vein as No. 3, don’t argue forever either. This is one where even I’ve had to restrain myself. We’re in an intellectual environment. Disagreement is going to occur. Your arguing with the professor for an extended period, however, is unfair to the other students and takes up precious class time. One question of disagreement is fine. Twenty minutes of why Plato didn’t say exactly what your professor thinks he said means you’re pushing it.

5) “Let me just check Facebook for a second…” Yes, I know you may not be as interested in supply and demand as I am. If you’re going to bring a laptop to class, don’t get on Facebook, play games or get on a webcam to see your boyfriend. I know I sound like a professor, but actually it is very distracting to every single person who’s behind you. The reason I didn’t bring my laptop is because I knew I would be doing exactly what you’re doing now. Learn some self-control or buy a notebook and a pencil.

These things are pretty simple. However, even the simplest things can be very complicated to do sometimes. Just keep these things in mind, and everyone will thank you for it.

Michael Lauck is a junior economics major from Houston