Who Determines What Is Acceptable?

Hey all. I wonder if it’s a coincidence that some of the most thought provoking and deep conversations I have with my friends are beer induced. I should really sue President Obama for this whole “Beer Summit” thing because my crew started it first. What usually starts as an afternoon or evening sitting around listening to music and talking loud over a few Hoegaardens or Sweetwater 420s usually ends up in an in-depth discussion about this, that or the other thing. Take last Sunday…

I’d just descended the stairs at my friend’s home after taking a pain induced nap after a morning of basketball with the guys. You’d think I’d have learned my lesson after this episode, but I digress. My friends were already gathered around the table on the patio when I limped over to join them discussing, what else, this that and the other. Somewhere after the second beer, an import that my beer snob of a best friend had offered me in hopes that it would help me forget how badly my shoulder was hurting, the discussion turned to the mannerisms of young men today in their approaches with the fairer sex. I have some pretty extreme views on this because I was raised with my parents, two older sisters and another adoptive older sister in the house; if word ever got back that I disrespected someone’s daughter I was going to get maimed and I’d probably be forced to go to the bathroom in the backyard for a week. Even with those extreme circumstances surrounding my upbringing most of what you do, how you speak, and how you treat a young lady when she has been kind enough to let you in her space is largely common sense, which we all know nowadays ain’t so common especially with the type of intergender communication I’ve seen around here in the last few years. The crew around the table consisted of three guys and two ladies so the perspectives were relatively balanced but here are a couple of notes on the conversation…

1. Arriving at the house…Swear to all that is holy if I ever have a daughter and some little knucklehead pulls up in front of the house and blows the horn for her to come out he’s going home with a shattered windshield. Same goes for sending an “I’m here” text when he gets to the house. Come to the door and introduce yourself so I’ll know who to kill if my daughter doesn’t come home on time.

2. Hold the damn door…Saw this at the mall the other day, dude was walking with his girl (I’m assuming because they got out of the same car) and he’s talking on his cell phone and he walks in the mall and the door just closes on his lady. Wrong on all levels. As a note, it was the consensus of the table that opening car doors is excusable due to the walking distance around the car. However, opening car doors is required for formal dates and occasions.

3. It’s a small thing but a dude should never let his companion walk on the traffic side of the sidewalk. I mean, it would be unfortunate for either of you to be hit by a MARTA bus while walking up the street to the arena to see a show, but at least be a gentleman and take the majority of the risk should that bus jump the curb.

Common sense, right? I think so, and so did everyone else in the impromptu beer summit discussion. The point of contention came when trying to nail down the issue of whose fault it is that these actions aren’t commonly practiced. It’s a widespread fact that fatherhood in “The Community” has been on the decline for a while so the lessons that I got from my Dad are going untaught to young men today. That was my thought process. Another point from across the table stated that there are several mothers raising sons that know right from wrong in the matters of how and what to do; even if they can’t wholly as a woman teach a man how to be a man they can certainly instruct on right from wrong. Then after placing her glass on the table, the other young lady in our group gave the opinion that the ladies on the bad end of treatment are to blame because they allow that behavior to go unchecked to which I agreed to an extent due to my belief that women hold all the cards when it comes to the coming and goings of relationships. She continued that, across the board, when women stop allowing themselves to be treated and looked at any kind of way then there will be a necessary up tick in chivalry, not because it’s necessary but simply because it’s the right thing to do. And while that was something we could agree on we couldn’t quite get past that chicken/egg conundrum of the reason why the problems exist in the first place.

So the issue is what came first? Is it that young men are simply not taught and therefore unaware of the little things that make them more socially acceptable? Or is it that women have lowered the bar so dramatically until just about anything will pass for decent treatment? I think that there is enough blame to share on both fronts, both young men and young women should have a grasp on what is and isn’t acceptable. Is any one group at fault or are you like me and think that everyone needs to step up a tad? And, are there any rules that you abide by socially when you are out dating that are absolutes for you? Share with the group…

~thanks for reading

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One comment

  1. Its a combination of all of all the ideas! I think there can’t be one section of life that is too blame. But I will say that the “insufficient daddying” has to take the most blame in this situation

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