Do you hold doors for other people, for example when others are getting on an elevator, coming in or out of a store/bank or restaurant?
Do you race people to a public door only to push through it without holding it open for the person/people behind you?
I do not.
Do you ever rush through a door, squeezing past people who are already in the doorway??
I do not.
Yet these behaviors seem to be growing trends. The squeezing in and out of, and not holding door business I mean, not the actual holding of doors for one another. At least in my experience the holding doors open, or waiting your turn are not on the rise.
Just last night we were being brought into a restaurant for our reservation. We were five people, the hostess had one of us right with her, while the other four were ever so slightly behind when this man, a grown man, came out of nowhere and was attempting to shoe horn his way in between all of us in order to get inside the restaurant first.
At first I kept quiet because I was sure that he would quickly become aware of the fact that six people, staggered two by two entering the building would make his squeezing past all of us IMPOSSIBLE. But continue to try he did. That’s when I spoke up and asked him if he would mind if our party could stay together.
He responded with a twisted, pained expression on his face, to which I responded; “we’re a group of five being taken to our table, would you mind waiting and letting us stay with the hostess?”
To which he replied; “well I’m trying to get into the restaurant too.” Loudly, and very much like a petulant man baby, rather than a gentleman.
Rather than engage, since this is my year of wellness, and what I’m currently focusing on is this: Let go of what you cannot change. He was grown, I wasn’t in a relationship with him, therefore it was obvious I would have no ability to get him to check himself. So I chose to ignore him and his shitty attitude by allowing him to push past. What I ended up with was so much greater than any altercation with him could have been. Which was witnessing him reach the hostess station where he was met with; “I’m sorry sir but your table won’t be ready for another fifteen minutes, if you wouldn’t mind waiting outside, we’ll come find you when your table is available.”
My friends, that was so much sweeter than it would have been to get all twisted up inside, and engaging in an attempt to teach this man any manners at all about a) how to be a gentleman out in the world and b) how not to be a dick. I instead had the smug satisfaction of walking past him into the restaurant to my seat where I enjoyed a lovely dinner at, quite possibly my favourite restaurant, on the planet. He on the other hand got turned right around and sent back where he came from, along with his two dinner companions, who for the record were already standing at the hostess stand checking on the status of their table.
Once I saw this, it had me “hmmm’n” even harder about his behaviour. I don’t know how you travel in a pack into a restaurant, but we when we’re a group going to dinner, only one person makes their way to the hostess stand to check on the reservation, the entire gang doesn’t need to crowd the stand. Like why bother? It’s not going to change whether or not your table is ready for you. Especially when dealing with such a teeny tiny place like Girgio Baldi, which for the record used to be a small bungalow house. It only has seats for 81 people, so trust me that there is not room at the hostess stand, but people do continue to try and wait there until their tables are ready.
Now, what about the people who rush to a door in front of you only to throw it open and quickly run through it even though you were almost at the door when they charged past? These are my favourite people. I usually give them the benefit of the doubt with my go to thought being one of sheer joy and gratitude at the idea that this human is going to hold the door for me. 8 times out of 10 I’m met with the exact opposite act, and then, try as hard as I might to not think it out loud I can’t help but think; “what a dick.”
What can we do about these trends? How do we get impatient rushing through doorways people to see the error of their ways? Or how can we get more people opening and holding doors for one another??? I’m thinking, why don’t those of us who are door holder openers, be sure to spread and encourage the habit by making a huge fuss over others when they do the same. Maybe, just maybe if we make others feel so awesome about it when they do it it will become habit. Like smiling, everybody who gets a smile naturally starts to give them once they remember how nice it feels to receive it. Maybe we can start a door holding opening pay it forward trend, who’s with me??? Because after all, we’re not animals here, so let’s be better at coming and going through doors than dogs are.