Author Topic: Showing up unannounced and unvited  (Read 13432 times)

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Roe

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #60 on: June 13, 2013, 07:05:31 AM »
I don't think it's "regional" at all.  I believe it's based on the manners you learned when growing up!  (btw, this whole idea of 'regional' just seems to be thrown about too much to explain any differences.  Sometimes it's true, sometimes I feel it's used as a way to say "see I'm right too.")

I don't care where you are from, if you don't offer your guests at least a drink of water, it is rude.  I've lived several places, traveled near and far and have always been offered some form of hospitality when visiting friends and family.  And I always offer visitors at least some water.  Level of hospitality depends on the length of their visit.

sammycat

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #61 on: June 13, 2013, 07:43:41 AM »
I don't think it's "regional" at all.  I believe it's based on the manners you learned when growing up!  (btw, this whole idea of 'regional' just seems to be thrown about too much to explain any differences.  Sometimes it's true, sometimes I feel it's used as a way to say "see I'm right too.")

I totally agree.

I posted earlier about someone only offering me a glass of water during a 3-4 hour visit. She lives around the corner from me (so definitely same region!), we're of similar socioeconomic status, as are those other people we are mutually connected with, yet they all offer proper hospitality (as do I). The lady I visited was just an anomaly.

jaxsue

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #62 on: June 13, 2013, 10:20:16 AM »
I don't think it's "regional" at all.  I believe it's based on the manners you learned when growing up!  (btw, this whole idea of 'regional' just seems to be thrown about too much to explain any differences.  Sometimes it's true, sometimes I feel it's used as a way to say "see I'm right too.")

I don't care where you are from, if you don't offer your guests at least a drink of water, it is rude.  I've lived several places, traveled near and far and have always been offered some form of hospitality when visiting friends and family.  And I always offer visitors at least some water.  Level of hospitality depends on the length of their visit.

I totally agree with this.

Growing up, people dropped in unexpectedly all the time (my dad was a preacher and we lived in a parsonage, so it came with the territory). My mom always had something on hand - drinks and light snacks. I've found that that is not always the way people are. I've even been invited to peoples' homes and been offered nothing, not even a glass of water!  :o

gellchom

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #63 on: June 14, 2013, 10:39:58 PM »
If you don't like people to come to your door without calling first or were raised not to do so, fine, that's how you roll.

But it isn't rude under American etiquette generally (as always, there are communities with different rules).  So although it is fine to request - politely - that people call you first, it really isn't fair to judge them as rude if they don't do so before you request it.  And it is rude to be nasty about it (actually that would be wrong even if knocking without first calling WERE rude).

The viewpoint that it is rude to knock without calling first makes me laugh, though, because what do you suppose people did before telephones?  When phones came along, they were seen as poor substitutes for physically showing up.  Reminds me of how engraving was seen as a substitute for handwriting, but now people think of it as superior.  And now my daughter's generation is annoyed by a telephone call instead of a text.

I agree that the OP's problem is the bad vibe she's getting from this guy, not the etiquette implications of the situation, and I agree that she should end the relationship, because she's uncomfortable.  But actually that's another reason not to focus on the etiquette.  If she focuses on his not calling, she clouds the message that she doesn't want to socialize with him at all.  He will just start calling.  I disagree, though, that she shouldn't care about hurting his feelings enough to be minimally polite and to be nice about telling him she doesn't really want to be friends.  For one thing, just because she's getting a creepy vibe doesn't mean that the guy IS a creep or dangerous and therefore undeserving of common courtesy.  For another, there's nothing to be gained by being nasty when being kind would be just as effective.  That's just gratuitously mean. 

TootsNYC

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #64 on: June 15, 2013, 09:35:05 AM »
When I invite people over, I always offer them a drink and/or snack.

So do I.

I was rather taken aback a few years ago when DS and I were invited over to a house for a playdate from 10am-2pm and the only thing I was offered was a glass of water. We assumed lunch would be served considering the timeframe. The only food on offer was the muffins I took over. We rejected all other visits to their home, although we met up a few times elsewhere.

It's regional. Where I grew up on the east coast, you'd never invite someone into your home and not offer them something. Here, you can invite someone into your home for a planned, hours-long activity and get aggravated when they ask for a sip of water from the tap.


I don't believe it. The bolded--"it's regional"--that's what I don't believe. I'm willing to believe that you personally encounter people who act like this, but they're jerks, not "examples of your new region's mores."

In *every* region of the U.S., if you invite people to your home, you are expected to provide some small level of refreshment.

People blame all sorts of rudeness on "it's regional" when it really just means that they currently are hanging out with a small circle of people who either are jerks or (if the action in question isn't rude) simply "do things that way in THEIR social/family circle."

(i will say, "an hours long planned activity" makes me wonder if this is the sort of thing that's not really a hosted social event but "an event like a club activity organized and held at the home of SOMEone," in which case honestly the attendees should be viewing it as potluck and providing something--but still, snotty about a drink of water? That's not polite behavior in ANY part of the U.S.)

TootsNYC

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #65 on: June 15, 2013, 09:37:00 AM »

The viewpoint that it is rude to knock without calling first makes me laugh, though, because what do you suppose people did before telephones?  When phones came along, they were seen as poor substitutes for physically showing up.  Reminds me of how engraving was seen as a substitute for handwriting, but now people think of it as superior.  And now my daughter's generation is annoyed by a telephone call instead of a text.


In the past, they called ONLY during accepted "visiting hours," and the butler answered the door and said "madam is not at home" if she didn't want to bother with that person or was in the middle of something important.

Thipu1

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #66 on: June 15, 2013, 09:56:20 AM »
I agree that the original issue here was that the OP got a bad vibe from the neighbor. 

'Regional' can be very different for different age groups.  When I was a child, there were certain houses where we knew we could go if we were out riding our bikes and needed the bathroom, a glass of water or a band-aid.  Most of these houses were where our friend's lived but there was also Annie May. 

She was an older lady who lived alone and was the sister of our school principal.  For kids, all of the above plus a cookie were always available at Annie May's house. 

However, Annie May would never think about dropping in unannounced on our parents and our parents would never think about dropping in on her.  That sort of thing was just not done where we lived. 

Contrary

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #67 on: June 15, 2013, 11:05:51 AM »

The viewpoint that it is rude to knock without calling first makes me laugh, though, because what do you suppose people did before telephones?  When phones came along, they were seen as poor substitutes for physically showing up.  Reminds me of how engraving was seen as a substitute for handwriting, but now people think of it as superior.  And now my daughter's generation is annoyed by a telephone call instead of a text.


In the past, they called ONLY during accepted "visiting hours," and the butler answered the door and said "madam is not at home" if she didn't want to bother with that person or was in the middle of something important.

This is probably pretty true for the wealthy and butlered, but the majority of people were just regular people and didn't have butlers to discourage visitors.  They would have had to make the same decision most of us have to make today when someone shows up unannounced at our door...answer it or don't.

TootsNYC

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #68 on: June 15, 2013, 11:44:00 AM »
I agree that the original issue here was that the OP got a bad vibe from the neighbor. 

'Regional' can be very different for different age groups.  When I was a child, there were certain houses where we knew we could go if we were out riding our bikes and needed the bathroom, a glass of water or a band-aid.  Most of these houses were where our friend's lived but there was also Annie May. 

She was an older lady who lived alone and was the sister of our school principal.  For kids, all of the above plus a cookie were always available at Annie May's house. 

However, Annie May would never think about dropping in unannounced on our parents and our parents would never think about dropping in on her.  That sort of thing was just not done where we lived.

But see, that's NOT "regional." There's nothing "region" about it. Words mean things.


This is "relationship-al" (though that's not a word). This is about what the relationships are among those sets of individuals.

Tea Drinker

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #69 on: June 15, 2013, 01:45:42 PM »

The viewpoint that it is rude to knock without calling first makes me laugh, though, because what do you suppose people did before telephones?  When phones came along, they were seen as poor substitutes for physically showing up.  Reminds me of how engraving was seen as a substitute for handwriting, but now people think of it as superior.  And now my daughter's generation is annoyed by a telephone call instead of a text.


In the past, they called ONLY during accepted "visiting hours," and the butler answered the door and said "madam is not at home" if she didn't want to bother with that person or was in the middle of something important.

This is probably pretty true for the wealthy and butlered, but the majority of people were just regular people and didn't have butlers to discourage visitors.  They would have had to make the same decision most of us have to make today when someone shows up unannounced at our door...answer it or don't.

And, going way back to the original scenario, no polite person would have gone around the building peeking to see if there was a light on, or challenging a neighbor later with "why didn't you answer the door yesterday, I know you were home?" If someone didn't answer, that meant they weren't home to visitors--whether because they were literally not home, or in the bath, or having a quiet evening with family and didn't want to see anyone else.
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gellchom

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Re: Showing up unannounced and unvited
« Reply #70 on: June 17, 2013, 01:14:48 AM »

The viewpoint that it is rude to knock without calling first makes me laugh, though, because what do you suppose people did before telephones?  When phones came along, they were seen as poor substitutes for physically showing up.  Reminds me of how engraving was seen as a substitute for handwriting, but now people think of it as superior.  And now my daughter's generation is annoyed by a telephone call instead of a text.


In the past, they called ONLY during accepted "visiting hours," and the butler answered the door and said "madam is not at home" if she didn't want to bother with that person or was in the middle of something important.

Oh, Toots, I knew someone (with your level of expertise!) was going to write that.   :). Yes, that was true, but of course only of a small segment of society during a limited era.