Living as we do in the modern world, often in close proximity to one another, we’re all bound to get on each other’s nerves. That’s why we have certain rules of polite behavior, like saying please and thank you, and saying sorry if you bump into someone—so we don’t all get fed up with each other and declare other humans canceled.
Some people don’t seem to get the rules, though. It could be because the rules are for the most part tacit—there’s no actual memo (although there should be). It could also be because some people just don’t care about the feelings of the people around them. There’s nothing we can do about those people, but just in case you are a good person who just happens to need a refresher, here are 35 rules of etiquette you should be following to be a good citizen of Earth.
1. Please, for the love of God, let people off trains, elevators, escalators, and so on before you get on.
Let others off before you get on.
2. That is called “a conversation.”
Listen to the content of what other people are saying before replying.
3. Please keep it down.
Headphones aren’t optional in a public space. No one wants to hear your music or your video clips playing.
4. You are not The Monkees.
When walking with several friends on a sidewalk, pair up two by two instead of everyone walking in a row so others can pass you on the sidewalk.
5. Hello! Look up! There’s a world around you!
Be the f**k AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS when walking in crowded areas. Don’t just fucking stop in the middle of the hallway and start rolling your cigs.
You don’t always have to have an opinion on everything. Saying “I don’t know” is fine.
7. Hands off, please.
Don’t touch people unless they say it’s ok. Don’t touch people’s pets unless they say it’s ok (and don’t complain if you do it anyway and get bit by a nervous animal).
8. This is for both of us. You don’t want to know all the weirdness on there.
When someone is showing you a picture on their phone, you should not swipe left or right. Or just don’t touch anything, especially messages and photos/videos, on anyone’s phone without their consent.
9. It’s just another human, just like you.
If you’re mad at a company for some transgression, don’t take your rage out on the customer service rep. Chances are, this person has people freaking out at them all day for things they have no control over. Be kind to customer service people – they are likely having a crappy day.
10. Ladies, stop hovering. Or get better at it.
Don’t piss all over the toilet seats of public bathrooms.
11. Not every place is a good place to stop and chat.
Don’t stand on opposite sides of a hallway having a long conversation.
12. Pick up after yourselves, you lazies.
Littering, everyone knows its wrong and not in their long-term interest. But people do it anyway because of lack of bins, laziness, etc.
13. This is truly very serious and also illegal.
Don’t text while driving, even if you are waiting at a junction and the light is red. Just put your phone away, you should be alert on the road at all times.
14. I mean…really.
Wash your damn hands after using the bathroom.
15. Show a little respect.
Stand up to shake someone’s hand if you’re sitting down.
16. No! This is NOT YOUR DAY!
Do not propose to your partner when you’re in a wedding.
17. That’s what it’s there for.
Use the turn signal when appropriate.
Cover. Your. F**king. Mouth. When. You. SNEEZE.
19. Show them that you know how to be a good guest.
When staying as a guest with friends/family, pick up after yourself. help clean the dishes, offer to buy them a meal or some beer to say thank you.
20. It’s rude, invasive, and none of your business.
Never ask: when are you going to have kids? When are you going to have another? Never. Never ever! If you’re asking, you don’t know the pain of infertility. You don’t know the pain of miscarriage. Just don’t f**king ask!
21. You have a phone. Use it.
Call before you come. Don’t just pop over, out the blue.
22. This should go without saying but somehow it needs saying.
Do not send unsolicited nude photos.
23. Of course, it’s also rude for people to try to talk to you when you’re busy having a life on your phone.
It’s rude to fuck around on your smartphone when someone is trying to have a conversation with you.
24. Just don’t.
Do not give out someone else’s number without their permission.
25. Don’t be a jerk.
Pick up your dog’s poop, even when it’s snowing.
26. Gotta give that wave.
Wave a ‘thank you’ if somebody lets you merge into traffic.
27. People have a lot of trouble with this one.
Don’t give unsolicited advice. If you feel it’s appropriate, ask, ‘Can I offer some advice?’ and respect their answer.
28. What are you, a psychopath?
Please, don’t bite your fork when eating.
29. Don’t make people pass you on the wrong side.
If you’re driving slow, GET THE FUCK OUT OF THE LEFT LANE! It’s the damn passing lane.
30. TAKE OFF YOUR DANG BACKPACK.
Remove your backpack when getting on crowded public transportation and hold it by the top handle.
31. Another example of a place it’s not okay to have a conversation.
Don’t talk on the phone while in a restroom stall.
32. The cashier is not a peasant.
Hand the cashier your money. Don’t just throw it on the counter.
Chew. With. Your. Mouth. Closed! I’ve seen so many people that chew their food with their mouths wide open and think its fine.
34. There are RULES, people.
On an airplane with 3 seats in a row, there are two amenities to each seat. Window gets a window and an arm rest. Middle gets two armrests. Aisle gets an armrest and a little extra leg. We’re not animals. We live in a society.
35. And last of all, don’t push it.
You can have the last piece of pizza, or the last beer. Not both.