Eagles Fans Behave Better Than Expected

But some Wawa customers could still learn a thing or two about manners

Three weeks ago I sat down to watch the Eagles game. I was a nervous wreck. With fingers crossed and a prayer on my lips, I waited to see what would happen. I wasn’t concerned with Michael Vick’s performance or Andy Reid’s play calling. Nope, I was worried about how the Philadelphia fans would behave when Donovan McNabb entered the stadium.

Let’s face it: Our fervent fans can be cruel and unforgiving. I was hoping that they could, just this once, illustrate some good manners and show Donovan some love. Thankfully, they did and I was glad to see it. Woefully, that demonstration, as heart-warming as it may have been, is all too uncommon. Bad manners, I’m ashamed to say, abound.

When I was pregnant and was entering a building, knights is shining armor rushed to get the door for the hugeness that was my belly. Nice, right? After the baby was born, that all changed. Then, as I entered a building with a screaming, crying baby, people would shy away and leer at me with that “How can you bring that horrible creature in here?” kind of look. Or, when trying to maneuver the stroller through a doorway barely inches wider than the contraption while balancing a diaper bag weighing 20 or 30 pounds on my back, all those pleasant folks who skirted around the stroller as its wheels were going every which way except into the damn building? Been there? Done that?

Bad manners. How many times have I held the door for someone at Wawa (I’m a regular; best coffee on the planet) only to have them breeze by without a word. And if you holler “You’re welcome!” after them in that I’m-an-insane-middle-aged-housewife-don’t-mess-with-me tone, they look at you like you are, in fact, just that.

No one sends thank-you notes anymore, even your closest relatives who you know should know better. Teenagers think a mention on Facebook or a quick text covers the responsibility, if they do anything at all. It doesn’t. And RSVPing is a joke. People either don’t do it at all or they call and say, “The thing is, I’m not sure what I’ll be doing then exactly? Can I let you know later? Would that be, like, okay?” No, it’s not okay. Look at your calendar. If the date has nothing written on it, you’re free. Either accept or decline. Maybe is not an option. I’ve termed this phenomenon the Bigger Better Offer Syndrome. I mean, let’s face it, aren’t they really saying that they’d like to wait and see if something better than your invitation pops up? That’s what I hear, and then I count them as a no.

Should we even consider driving? As I merge onto the Schuylkill I wonder why the car to my left is hellbent on keeping me from entering the roadway. Does he think I’ll just pull over and park on the shoulder? Am I not entitled to get where I’m going? Not in front of him apparently. And how about lane changing, huh? Traffic is crawling on the Schuylkill and you want to get over a lane. Put on your blinker and inch forward as 10, 12 cars squeeze in as tightly as they can to the car in front of them, hand gripping the wheel, death stare straight ahead You can hear them thinking, “This 10 feet of road is mine, damn it, and you will not take it from me!!”

The world is a busy place. Wouldn’t some better manners make it a little easier to navigate? That’s my thinking; thanks for listening.