Respect and Manners are our common bonds as civilized people. Please see www.janpolk.com
for information on Respect Awards for children, teenagers, and adults. This project is sponsored by artist Jan Polk.
1. Dress comfortably but nicely when traveling. Too many Americans dress like hippies when they fly. We all know that airplanes are mass transit these days, but take some pride in your appearance. You never know when the person in the next seat will turn out to be really important in your life.
2. When traveling abroad, remember that you are a goodwill ambassador for your country. Some people have never met Americans, but all too many have seen our TV talk shows that show us at our worst. Your appearance and manners reflect on us all.
3. On an airplane, recline your seat gradually so you don't startle the person behind you with a sudden invasion of his or her space. It is even better to turn around and ask, "Is it all right with you if I recline my seat?"
4. Be aware if the child you are traveling with is kicking the seat in front of her. If you are the one being bumped, kindly ask the adult in charge of the child to please tell the young lady not to kick the seat. That's better than speaking directly to the child and ignoring the adult, who is ultimately responsible.
5. When facing a really big problem and you just don't know what decision to make, continue with the day-to-day courtesies. Return your phone calls, write thank you notes, and send birthday cards. Taking care of the little things reminds you that you are still capable and functioning.