I am looking for a gentleman. Well, actually, I am looking for a whole slew of them, but I probably won’t find them.
Now a much older woman, I grew up in a society in which people showed respect to one another, especially men toward women. Manners were important. Men stood up when a lady approached; men took hats off when inside a dwelling; men opened car doors for female passengers.
A few days ago, I was heading to the bus stop. One man was already sitting on the bench and another walked hurriedly toward the only other empty seat, attempting to grab it before I approached. Both men sat on the bench, while I was standing next to them for 15 minutes, holding two heavy bags. Neither offered me a seat.
Another recent time, a man and I were waiting for an elevator and he pushed ahead to enter it before I did. On a visit to the movie theatre, I noticed a group of young men wearing their hats inside during the entire feature.
Now, I know that I am old-fashioned, and times have changed, but I am flexible. I open my own car door and hold doors for men entering the same destination as I am. I am not complaining about a “woman” thing; I am complaining about a “people” thing. I am looking for those who show deference and respect for others, regardless of age and gender.
My two grandsons (ages 11 and 14) hold the door open for others; pull out the dining room chair for ladies; carry heavy packages to help those with the burden. I am grateful to my daughter and son-in-law (also a gentleman) for instilling these values in these two young people. I won’t live long enough to see if they retain these respectful gestures as they grow into young men, but I am hopeful.
At least I know that I have found two gentlemen in the making. Hopefully, there will be a whole slew of them in the future.