Proper Southern Manners Part 5 (Courtesy Words and Actions)
Common words of courtesy can take an individual a long ways these days since so few practice them. Some of the common words and actions you will see in the South are:
– Say, “Yes sir,” “No sir,” or “Yes ma’am,” “No ma’am.”
– Always say, “Please,” “May I,” “Thank You,” “You’re Welcome,” “Excuse Me,” “Pardon Me.”
– A man wearing a hat should take it off when indoors. Coaches Paul “Bear” Bryant and Bum Phillips were known for not wearing their hats in enclosed stadiums such as the Superdome in New Orleans.
– A hat should also be removed (by men) during the national anthem, the raising of the flag, funeral processions, and prayer. This hat doffing can also be done at the gentleman’s discretion for any event for which he wants to show respect.
– If you are wearing a hat, tip it when a lady walks by.
– Acknowledge others when walking by with a smile, a nod or “hello.”
– Allow someone with only one to three items ahead of you at the grocery store when you have a full basket. (Don’t be in such a rush, things go slower in the South)
When someone else is speaking, don’t interrupt. Wait until they are done speaking, or if it is an urgent matter, say, “Excuse me, but …”