This seems like a simple deed … and it is.
Today’s good deed: HOLD THE DOOR OPEN FOR SOMEONE
I opened the door for a woman at the post office today. She was carrying multiple boxes. They didn’t look super heavy, still I thought it was the nice thing to do. She smiled like she just won $10 on a scratch-off lottery ticket.
Everybody should be polite enough to hold doors for each other. In fact, if I ruled the world, cops would give tickets to people who weren’t courteous. You don’t hold a door open for someone: you get a fine. Guilty parties can blame it on not being raised right and get ONE pass. After that: uncivil citation. You also burn calories by eating donuts in my world. A girl can dream, can’t she?
All this thought about ‘rude tickets’ got me wondering about proper door protocol, so I consulted the Internet. I found a website called The Classy Woman. In it, the writer outlined 5 Tips on How to Properly Hold a Door for Someone. She covered who to hold a door for (everyone), and how to make holding a door less awkward (pull the door towards you and stand to the side). Apparently it IS proper to smile at the elderly person you’re holding the door open for but NOT proper to say, “Move your ass, grandma! I got stuff to do!” Huh. You learn something new every day.
For more advanced door etiquette I had to consult Judith Martin, also known as Miss Manners. When it comes to elevators, she says it’s rude not to hold the door if you hear, “Hold the Elevator!” However, if you MUST leave right away, the proper thing to do is, “Shoot a frantically helpless look at whoever is left behind, telegraphing that you are not swift enough to locate the ‘Door Open’ button in time.” That one I knew.
I held a door open for a woman yesterday who walked through it without even acknowledging me. I wanted to say, “After you, your Majesty!” but to be honest … I didn’t think of it in time. The Classy Woman says that I shouldn’t expect a thank you. “If your true motives for doing the good deed are pure and joy is in your heart to truly assist another person then your reasons should outweigh any rude folks you come across.”
She’s right. I will continue to hold the door open for people regardless of the response. I guess that means I shouldn’t give out ‘rude tickets’ in my world any more either. You’ll still burn calories eating donuts in my world though. And George Clooney will still be single. A girl can dream, can’t she?
Photo (Flickr CC) by William Murphy