Let’s face it … the changing times, the advent of feminism (or as some may prefer, “Girl Power”), and a sea change toward utter apathy has resulted , of late, in a relative lack of chivalry. Perhaps it is because I am not as cute as I once was nor am I elderly enough to command respect and/or sympathy.  But no, rather, I think we’re in the throes of a changing tide. If you are a lady between the ages of 14 and 70 trying to wrestle a rollerbag into an overhead bin? Expect dudes in the surrounding rows to continue reading their USA Todays. Standing around waiting for a first-come, first-served table?  Watch out, because those Fred Durst wannabes will swoop the f*ck in before you and your girlfriends can spin on your high heels.  And it’s fine, really, because we’re independent, throw our hands up at you, etc. etc., but there is a certain thing as manners, and respecting the comfort of others.

One place where charity isn’t extinct, however, is on office-building elevators.  True story.  I work in an iconic building smack dab in the financial district and I would say at least 75% of the elevator riders each morning and lunch hour are of the XY chromosome variety.  And without fail, they always, always, allow me to board first, even if they are directly in front of the parting doors and I’m several steps away. The same is true for the elevator exit – they hate to see me leave, but they love to watch me go – HA!  In fact, this relic of proper upbringing is so prevalent that it becomes shocking in other elevator situations if I am not treated with the same courtesy.

Perhaps letting the womenfolk board and unboard first is just one way to miss out on 15 additional arduous seconds at the office, but I’ll  take what I can get.  And in a city life that recently involved getting slugged in a dodgy burrito joint 10 minutes after a massive and universal celebration of human rights, simple elevator preferential treatment seems like a lot.

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