Giving up your seat

I spent 1 semester at UGA before I started pharmacy school. It didn’t take me long to get used to riding the campus bus and squeezing in for standing room only to get to class on time.

One particular day, I had gotten on a fairly empty bus and was able to get a seat. A few stops down, tons of people piled in. A guy close to me offered a girl his seat and she declined. I was already in a seat but seeing that exchange made me so angry.

“How ungrateful can you be?!?! His mama actually trained him right – told him you always give up your seat for lady. But today, girls don’t want to be a “lady” – they’re independent, they’re “emancipated”! You won’t accept a mannerly, chivalrous gesture, yet you complain when guys treat you like dirt. What do you expect? You’ve got them all confused!!”

I made a promise to God that day – if ever a guy (beau, friend, or stranger) makes a mannerly gesture towards me, I WILL NOT deny it!

A few days later, I got on a bus that was packed out the gills. I got in the rear door of the bus – barely. This guy – a 6′ 3″, skinny, black guy with a track letterman’s jacket on – tapped me on the arm and said “would you like to sit down?”. Remembering my internal rant and promise, I said “yes”. He gave me his seat, and it started a commotion throughout the bus! He didn’t try to chat me up, ask my name, try to get my phone number. Somebody else’s mama trained him right too.

Mamas: continue to train your boys to have manners and to train them how to treat women – of any status.

Boys: listen to your mamas, what they teach you will help you get a good woman one day

Girls: accept mannerly gestures, don’t be two-faced and never accept kindness and then complain that no one is nice to you.

Maybe I’m spoiled from the time I spent at North Ga. College & State U. where the ROTC requires all cadets to act mannerly and show the utmost respect to everyone (they carried our books, our trays, held doors, and gave up seats). Or you may say that I’m old-fashioned – but you’d be lying if you didn’t show some envy of the girl who gets treated by Carey Grant, Gene Kelly, or Frank Sinatra. Those guys had skills!