No rudeness limits

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James Hilston’s experience with a rude older woman (“Random Acts of Rudeness,” Nov. 16 Saturday Diary) doesn’t surprise me at all. There are many older adults who obviously never read or attended “Manners 101,” or else they have completely forgotten how to act in a kindly demeanor.

Many years ago, as I was attempting to board a very crowded Port Authority bus while carrying my 9-month-old son and an umbrella stroller, I accidentally bumped an older man’s foot. This man was sitting, and as I quickly apologized, much to my shock and horror, he deliberately kicked my leg very forcefully. I yelled at him, “What is wrong with you?” but he just muttered something nasty as I passed by. I have also witnessed older shoppers being very rude and unreasonable with sales clerks.

I’ve never forgotten that encounter on the bus. When people begin to criticize the younger generations, I quickly remind them that rudeness comes in all sizes, shapes and, yes, ages! As an afterthought, I wonder how that discourteous woman’s own children and grandchildren (assuming she has any) act? Perhaps “rudeness” skips a generation or two? In this case, I certainly hope so!


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