social etiquette is a phenomena that has amused me in many forms throughout my largely un eventful life, some things are acceptable and some things we 'just don't do.'
for instance, you are obliged to nod or acknowledge a person you know (however vaguely) every time you pass them in the street and if you fail to do so it is immediately assumed that you bare nothing but resentment for this person and deserve steely resentment in return, or when you see sum-one who has fallen off a bicycle and is clearly not 'all-right' you have to walk over and ask the blindingly obvious "are you alright?" to which social etiquette demands the answer to in variably be "yes!" when what you really want to say is "do i fucking look like im all-right?".
of course there are no written rules (asides from the 2 i have just written down) but everyone knows them and everything just plods along smoothly and no-won questions them but what happens when the way we socialise changes? do we have to change the rules?
The problem started with the telephone, social etiquette would never allow the making of loud and annoying noises at any time day or night to attract the attention of another person yet here, the telephone is throwing the rules aside and doing precisely that!
And it doesn't end there, while engaged in a phone call you are faced with a terrible social dilemma, wether to cut short the conversation on the phone in favour of the people that actually made the effort to talk with-ought the use of a plastic box of expensive radio waves or blank them until the person that obnoxiously buzzed in your pocket has spoken their fill.
yes, almost always social etiquette is broken and the real people are blanked, but whats worse is this is seen as acceptable! 'hang on iv just got to take a call' or 'wares jim?' 'oh he's just taking a call he will be with you in a minute'.
the rules of phones are becoming a lot more clear cut as time goes on however there is a relatively new kid on the figurative block, text and social networking.
progress is moves in strange ways, we first had to communicate with cave paintings but that was shit so sum-one invented talking, that was great but difficult over long distances so another clever sod decided that letters were a good idea and sent a load of them to everyone notifying them that this was the future of communication, in return some letters were sent requesting a method by which to talk to sum-one using words over a long distance and as such the telephone was invented and was a smash hit with the grainy black and white folk of the time.
this is plainly progress however after that it all went a bit wrong, we decided that talking was not what we wanted to do after all so we went back to letters and numbers but only this time we needed not just a humble pen and paper but a high tech box of circuitry and lights that communicated with giant floating bin lids in outer space in order to send a simple letter. not only does this giant leap back into the dark ages make very little sense it also played havoc with social etiquette.
There are now things that can and cant be said via text for example 'hi, would you like to meet up in town later?' being an acceptable message and sum-thing like 'will you marry me?' being best left to traditional methods but this is exactly the grey area i am conveniently straying into.
what is acceptable to text? and are some things exclusively for text? well, to quote Mark Corrigan from peep show "if text kisses were real kisses the whole world would be a massive orgy" and he makes a good point (for a fictional character), we do seem to make a lot more physical expressions of affection when physical expressions are not possible, to a point where if you were to actually act like that in real life you would be shunned for breaking the unspoken rules of social etiquette that we stick to so religiously.
so is this just another chapter in the un spoken, un written rule book? well if it is it must just be in pencil at the moment because no-won actually knows the rules.
there are some theory s floating about like '1 kiss is just nothing, 2 kisses is friendly 3 kisses means i want to get in your pants' etc. etc. but this is largely dismissed as bollocks.
as often happens with rants like this i have failed to reach a valid conclusion but insted simply drifted off on a never ending tangent but all i can say is this.
social etiquette is everywhere, and texts are no acceptation but at the moment no-won actually knows what is is.
or on the flip side that could all just be bollocks.