Tuesday, June 3, 2014

More Vintage Etiquette for Improving Those Annoying Personal Habits

Airing your prejudices is an annoying personal habit!

Airing Your Prejudices

The person who knows everything, thinks she's right about everything, and is out convince everyone with whom she comes into contact, never will be liked in society. People have their own opinions, and the person who sails into a conversation with a remark about a "lousy president" or a "bunch of narrow minded religionists," is sure to be stepping on somebody's toes. The person who does such talking is considered ignorant by persons who have breadth of thought and tolerance.


Never appear in public with a toothpick dangling in the corner of your mouth. Never pick teeth in the presence of another person. Use dental floss in privacy.

Criticizing Others

Never criticize the personal weaknesses of others verbally... (Unless your criticism is so witty, it is undoubtedly mistaken for a compliment.) 

Never criticize the personal weaknesses of others verbally. It is helpful to notice unpleasant things about other persons and to turn the findings into benefit by correcting your own practices. Study your practices! Make a list of the fault you discovered about yourself as well as your friends. Compare the list. No doubt you will find that the notations about yourself reveal many unpleasant habits that you will willingly correct immediately.

Being Personal

"How much did you pay for it?" " Do you like your husband's mother? " Such personal questions are bad manners.  Never ask anyone a personal question -- this applies to members of the family, too -- unless you have sound justification. Personal remarks are as bad as personal questions.  Some persons seem to think it is their duty to tell you what they think of you, or your clothes; they do not seem to approve of anything about you.

"That's a new dress, is it Betty? It's in style, but I don't like pink so well as blue on you. That dress you wore so much last winter was beautiful."

Such a remark is rude and inexcusable. If something altogether pleasant cannot be said in a personal remark, don't make it.

The Expectorator  
Expectorating off the Titanic ~ Rose-"Teach me to ride like a man."  Jack- "And chew tobacco like a man."  Rose-"And spit like a man!" Jack-"What, they didn't teach you that in finishing school?"
Never expectorate on the sidewalk, or from the window of a train or automobile, and never expectorate in the presence of anyone. If you have a cold, carry with you a supply of tissues. Use them and destroy them immediately.

The Belcher 

Belching  can usually be controlled. If there are occasions when you cannot control it, say, "I'm sorry."  These words will not prevent your embarrassment, however. There is nothing you can do that will cover up the sound.

The Handkerchief  Waver

"No. I am so sorry. I didn't wave that hanky at you.  This dim-witted younger sister of mine was the one waving it around."
Keep your handkerchief out of sight as much as possible; use it only when necessary. The purpose of a handkerchief isn't anything pleasant, and it is revolting to others to see you shaking a handkerchief around if it isn't extremely fresh. Many a nervous habit starts with twisting and folding a handkerchief, so it is best to keep your handkerchief in a pocket, in your purse, or in the desk drawer at the office, unless it is actually needed. Retire from the sight and sounds of other persons when it is necessary to blow your nose violently.

Source "The Searchlight Homemaking Guide," 1937