Apparently You Can't Buy Manners

Today had me out of town, driving around in places that I'd never been before. Posh was an understatement, and the homes were gorgeous. We stumbled upon a shopping center in this uber upscale neck of the woods and stopped in for a restroom at Starbucks and a sandwich at the grocery store. You know you're in high society when the Beamers and Audis are the lower end cars in the parking lot. I mean, how often do you see a Maserati in *your* local shopping center? (Around our parts, the answer is Never.) (As in Never EVER.)

We met at this point to pick up Luke, who was visiting cousins for a few days. Micah was thrilled to see his brother and spent a good bit of time talking to him in his Big Loud Outdoor I Have One Volume Voice. I smiled at the brotherly love as we walked the grocery aisles looking for portable drinks and sandwiches to take on the road with us. That's probably why I was taken aback by the lady who walked by us just as Micah started telling Luke about something important. Micah spoke (in his Big Loud Outdoor I Have One Volume Voice that doesn't say words but merely sounds) and this lady's head swiveled like something from a horror movie to stare into the face of the child who dared make that noise in her presence. I was so shocked that I had no reaction, other than to think somewhere in the back of my stunned brain that her behavior was incredibly rude.

Standing in the checkout lane, we waited our turn patiently. Luke was talking about the fun that he'd had, and Micah chose to comment on something. The lady in front of us turned around to stare at Micah, then look at me with mouth agape and glowering eyes. I had a reaction ready this time. I turned on my brightest "that's my boy and I'm incredibly proud of him" smile, then sipped my Starbucks as I turned away from her to lay a hand on Micah's shoulder.

guitar concert

10 comments:

Carol N. said...

Karen, you are so awesome. I would love to shop with you, and I would pass Micah the store microphone...cause, you know, it was so darn cute the other time :o)

Trisha said...

Good for you! People who don't understand can be a big pain in the butt!

Flea said...

Rude people. Ya can't kill 'em.

incivilian.net said...

Is it possible that the other shoppers considered it equally rude for you to allow your son to use his outside voice in a public indoor space?

Karen said...

Incivilian - that may be entirely possible, but I still think it's rather bad manners. On the occasion when I think someone's children are way out of line, I never find it's my place to let them know about it. Nobody likes being over-parented.

inkyblog said...

good for you :)

txgirl said...

Ok...I'm gonna have to agree with incivilian.net here. I know to u it was an adorable special moment, but it wasn't to others around you. I know I don't want to hear a loud voice while I am shopping just as much as I don't want to hear someone else smacking at a resturant. I've been known to walk beside loud kids and say "inside voice" at a store. I have gotten looks from parents, but you know if they had said it first I wouldn't hear the kid 3 isles away.

Karen said...

txtgirl - I like that you're polite enough to just say "inside voice" instead of glaring or criticizing. Thank you for that.

Driven To Distraction said...

I honestly don't understand how anyone could look at the interaction between Micah and Luke and not see the sheer excitement that Micah had in seeing him or the joy he was having in sharing in Luke's stories of adventure with his cousins! On the uber rare occasions when I am out shopping alone I admit that loud children sometimes bug me - but only if they are loud AND unruly . . . there is a huge difference and I am sorry the people where you were couldn't see that!

Jo Angel said...

I have to agree with Driven to Distraction - A loud noise is only temporary. The hurt of a rude glare sometimes is the last straw.