Etiquette Tip of the Week: Get In Line
In a line or crowd, there are two kinds of bullies:
1) Those who weasal and nudge their way past those who have been waiting longer than themselves.
2) Those who say to late-arriving friends in back, "Come up here and get in front of me," as if they own the real estate in front of them and have the right to push everyone else back. (Newsflash: wolfish, clique-y behavior does not go away with high school graduation.)
Practicing good etiquette means awareness and consideration of the people around you.
If you would like to offer your late-arriving friends your spot, you may switch places with them and take their position at the back of the crowd or line, as long as the switch does not involve throwing elbows, flattening senior citizens or knocking others out of the way.
Take the high road. There is no glory in owning a seat, while senior citizens stand or those with disabilities stand. If your coat, purse or barrel of popcorn did not buy a ticket for the movie theater, your coat, purse or barrel of popcorn should not usurp a seat from someone who did buy a ticket. Allow the person behind you in line at the grocery store with one or two items to go before your cart-load. "I am in a hurry," is not a viable rationale for cutting in line.
Want to clobber the perpetrators of bad behavior in a crowd or line? Take a number.