Hey! Randy

Boors Beware

Posted by heyrandy on February 14, 2012

I See Rude People, Amy Alkon, 2010

The subtitle of this book, One woman’s battle to beat manners into impolite society, is the core of the book. Ms. Alkon is a one woman army on the attack against boorishness. She has a lot of targets. She takes no prisoners.

From cell phone loudmouth to loudmouth children, Alkon assails the bad manners of inconsiderate people. She does not care a wit for what table setting you use, but she cares greatly about how you use it. To her, manners are about other people, she being one of them.

Can you imagine suing telemarketers because the called you up? She did–and won. Would you ever track down the lout who posted rude comments in you blog’s comments section? She called one man up at his job. He is a satellite controller for NASA. That he used government computers and time to make his comments just made her angrier–she rightly says, “I am a taxpayer. I am paying for this.”

Alkon tracked down the thief who stole her car, after the police gave a perfunctory try. Another time she found the man who hit her parked car. She won her suit against him. She once called the head of a chain store at home an railed at its telemarketing practices to the man’s wife. “How do you like being called at home?” She didn’t.

Ill-mannered children really get Alkon ire. Actually, it’s the parents at whom she is angry. She says, “I don’t tell people how to parent. I just tell them to parent.” Alkon realizes that no child is perfect all the time, so she give lots of latitude to parents who give lots of effort to teaching children how to behave.

One interesting bit of technotrivia I learned is that cell phone do not have a feedback mechanism in them to help the speaker know how loud he is talking. I had long ago noticed that the land line phones had this but though it was just me. If cell phones had this feature, Alkon might not have been able to call some woman and leave a message about the birthday party the woman was hosting at the woman’s home at 123 Main St. on July 15 at 2:30pm.

Alkon’s wit is sharp, her gall unmitigated. Cross her at her at your peril, read her for your own enjoyment. If you borrow the book, return it on time. Others are waiting.

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