Life is full of shades of gray, but some things are black and white. If you do any of these, Harry Potter’s sorting hat just put you in the asshole house. If you’re an offender, you might have everyone you know, and strangers, screaming: YOU ARE THE WORST.
- You don’t return your cart to the designated area. This is terrible person qualifier 101. What’s it like being this lazy? How do you function at this level of inconsiderateness? You think the last thing I want to do after wrestling with my kid in a store for 45 minutes is figure out where this shopping cart with the wonky wheel goes? No. I want to leave it right next to my car, with my toddler strapped in it and drive off into the sunset. But I’m not human trash, so I walk the 10 yards. Honestly doing the right thing here is so easy, that if you opt not to, what the actual F is the matter with you?
- You don’t tip or you tip poorly. A whole slew of things happen when you’re this guy. First, no one wants to go out with you. Your friends and family are whispering apologies to staff and padding their hands with money to atone for your poor breeding. Shame should be enough for you to cough up 20%, but if it’s not… perhaps guaranteeing yourself poor service in the future is? If you plan on ever patronizing an establishment again, I suggest you aren’t a total pain in the ass. Because servers. Never. Forget. These people are (mostly) working hard to make sure you get your gluten free cardboard just the way you want it.
- You don’t let someone into the lane. You’re a doctor speeding to the hospital to save someone’s life and if you let this car in someone is going to die on the table. Not the case? Of course it isn’t. Just let the Honda Civic through for Christ’s sake.
- You don’t wave your arm frantically to thank someone for letting you into the lane. After someone lets you in because they aren’t a total dick, you should reciprocate said decency with a gesture that says “I AM ETERNALLY GRATEFUL, BUT I’M DRIVING SO ALL I CAN DO IS WAVE MY HAND AND HOPE YOU SEE IT THROUGH MY TINTED WINDOWS.” It’s symbolic and conveys a message of solidarity; hey we’re traveling together on this literal and figurative road of life.
- You don’t send thank you notes. You invited us all here today to celebrate your birth, graduation, wedding, or baby. You are cashing checks and unwrapping presents because people love you. They showed up for you. Take 10 minutes of your day and say thank you. In many situations, you can even get away with texting it these days. Acknowledging people is important.
- You don’t make eye contact. It can be uncomfortable, but are you 12? How can I trust you with those shifty eyes? Are you casing the joint? Giving someone eye contact is the respectful thing to do. The homeless, your server, the President. Just do it.
- You litter. The next cigarette butt my kid picks up at the park I’m mailing away for DNA testing and I’m coming for you. And if a gum wrapper falls out of your child’s hand, yes, I expect you to grab it. This land is your land, this land is my land – let’s not make this political, let’s just be decent humans.
- You make a mess. Dressing rooms, restaurants, bathrooms. It is no one’s job to clean up after you. Even if you think it is.
- You want social media to go back to normal. Someone died, someone’s rights are in jeopardy, or someone is talking about something that you don’t deem important. You want babies and weddings and crafts. Pictures of food and ponies. Aw, you’re adorable. Is other people’s reality getting in the way of your vapid cushy existence? I get it, you want the Lisa Frank filter for your newsfeed, and oppression is just so boring. You’re wondering what all this talk about justice is, cause like… we all can vote, quit whining. And last but not least, get a job! Instead of notifying everyone how out of touch you are (inconsiderate, insensitive, etc. etc.), try “unfollowing” and “deleting”; curating that cotton candy wonderland without alerting the masses. 6 million Jews died, so yah I’m gonna remind you that Nazis suck. And that despite your insistence to the contrary, racism exists. You just keep scrolling and thinking about Target.
I think we can all be a little less douchey if we start considering, “how does this seemingly innocuous behavior impact someone else?” Happy self reflection fam!
Scarlett is a stay at home-ish mom, bartender, and wife. You can follow her on Instagram.