Etiquette! What is it?

What have you learnt in the session you attended? asked my husband soon after I came home from the three hour  session on Etiquette.

Quite a lot,  I said,   the sweet voice of the speaker still ringing in my ears.

Why don’t you tell me a few of  the “do’s” and “don’t’s” regarding the rules of etiquette, he said.

I found the lady had a new approach to the rules.  She started first with the don’t’s,  I will quote her  verbatim  if you are interested,  I said.

Yes,  be brief, he emphasized.

 Rule 1. Please  don’t switch off  your mobiles as I can understand how important it is for you to make calls or receive calls  while the session is on.

Rule  2. Don’t hesitate to have a long conversation on your mobiles  if you so wish.

That’s strange,  she appears to be a queer  person,  interrupted  my husband.

Wait,  please have patience  and let me complete,  I said.

O.K. go on, he sounded irritated.

Rule 3. Don’t   feel embarrassed  to leave the hall  while the  session is in progress.

 Rule 4.Don’t hesitate to engage in cross talk with fellow participants even while I am speaking. 

 The lady appears  to be off her head, butted in my husband before I could continue.

Rule 5. Don’t  think twice  to place your feet on the chair in front of you if it is vacant.

Now,  I think YOU must be off your head to have  sat through such gibberish, quipped my husband.

Why don’t you let me finish?  I insisted.

Rule 6. Don’t hesitate to interrupt me if you have any doubts. I shall be happy  to clarify  them.

You mean to say you people sat through all this nonsensical talk of hers  for three hours?,  he appeared disgusted.

We had to because we paid through our nose to learn the rules of Etiquette, I said.

Through “my nose”, he corrected me.

O.K. forget the rest of the don’ts, mention at least one “Do” according to her,  he  said.   

Now,  you seem to  ask a very pertinent question and  I too did the same  getting  tired of listening only to the don’ts, I said.

You will be disappointed with the answer, I warned him.

I  don’t need  to be disappointed  any further, she would  have said  something  equally ridiculous,  he  mocked.

No,  for once  we all thought  she  sounded very sensible  when she  said, “Please   do   stay  for the twelve course lunch  which immediately follows the session  and collect your certificates of participation .”

Ah, now I understand  why she charged  such an exorbitant fee, the  12 course lunch at the Star hotel would have been certainly worth the amount she collected!he observed.

N. Meera Raghavendra Rao


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