FIVE THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN YOU LIVE ALONE by Sandra de Helen
Some people worry about dying alone, maybe being dead for days before being found. Maybe the cats will eat you before someone comes. Those fears are okay, but what we really need to be concerned about is losing our social skills. Just yesterday I drove up to the library, parked near an apartment building with individual balconies. A guy on the second floor was standing out in his pajamas — belching. Excuse you, sir.
People who live alone have no one to whom to apologize for burping. They forget to cover their mouths when coughing, they walk around farting at will. They may talk to themselves, sing, hum, or whistle for their own amusement. All these things are fine and dandy, until they go visit someone for a few days.
If you are going to visit friends or relatives, or going to share a room with someone at a conference, consider these things:
- Other people don’t want to see what you’re eating as you eat it. Close your mouth when you chew.No one wants to hear you sing, whistle, or hum unless they’re paying you to do so.
- Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Use your elbow. No one wants your germs.
- Apologize for your body noises.
- If you want things to be the same as at your home, stay home. Otherwise, have a sense of adventure! Wear layers so you can adjust yourself to the ambient temperature, not the other way around.
Remember your manners, and you will have a fine time. You might even get invited back!
By the way, this essay was submitted and rejected immediately by the site I thought was perfect for it. They begged to differ. ha. I may try to rewrite it so it has a more positive tone, but I may not. It’s off my chest now, innit?