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Well…about this time last year, I was cheering for the Saints to be in the Superbowl again – now I’m just wishing I was in N’awlins for the Superbowl.  Oh what a town for a party.  Having been raised in the Big Easy, I can tell you, it is sheer madness and mayhem any time there is an event of this magnitude.  This will be the 10th time New Orleans will be hosting the Superbowl. The last time I saw Superbowl excitement in New Orleans was in 1985.  It was Superbowl XX between the Patriots and the Bears and I was working in radio/tv at the time.  Exciting times.

In a previous post on Superbowl Party Etiquette, we focused more on the “home party” and simple rules of hosting/guesting etiquette since people celebrate all over the map for the event.  For Superbowl XLVII, considering the location, I thought it would be a good opportunity to visit “etiquette in public places”.  Let’s face it…there will be A LOT of partying going on,  not only in the Superdome, but “in the Quarter” (French Quarter) and probably just about every other hotel, restaurant, club, and on streets of the city from uptown to downtown,  “across the river” (the West Bank), and “across the lake” (Lake Pontchartrain).

While you (and I) may not get to be in the heart of the Big Easy for the event, here are a few helpful hints that can be applied most anywhere there is celebration in the air!

  • Drivers Slow Down – People are excited.  They are walking en masse – crossing streets as they find their way to the event, laughing, talking, probably texting too!  Drive carefully, slowly, and with all eyes on the pedestrian traffic as you navigate the streets.


  • “No Cuts” – Remember that rule in elementary school?  That’s why you were taught it back then…so you can use it now!  Lines are long at various pubs, clubs, restaurants and restroom facilities when an event is taking place.  Holding a “place for your group of 6 arriving sometime soon” is unacceptable.  At the very minimum, one might hold a place for their partner/spouse, etc. and let the person behind you know that you are expecting  them any minute.  Never hold up the line because you are waiting for someone. 


  • No Spills, No Thrills – It happens. It’s a party right?  People are drinking, it’s crowded, someone bumps someone and the next thing you know, you’re wearing the “house red”.  What are you going to do?  Get up in their face?  Doesn’t change the circumstance does it?  If you’re the offender – apologize immediately. Offer to help by getting club soda for the patron (don’t offer to wipe – just offer the soda), giving your contact information to pay a cleaning bill, or…at the very least, offer to buy them a drink.  It’s the polite thing to do!

  

  • Is There A Gentleman In The House? – If so…please…offer your seat to a lady (unless you are in a very close and engaged conversation with another); and do so for no other reason than to be a gentleman.


  • Like The Doors? – No, not the group….real doors!  I do.  I like holding them for people – all ages, all genders.  Step up and show your shining civility.  Oh sure, they might get to go ahead of you to the counter or to get a table but really…how much is at stake?  Okay, I’ll admit, if I’m alone or with my husband and/or son and see a group of 10 heading for the same venue…one of us WILL go ahead of them…but one still remains to exhibit the mannerly action for the group.

 

  • Speaking of Stepping Up – Escalators are commonly used to “expedite pedestrian travel”.  Some will just stand and wait to be transported while others want to barrel down the sides to get where they are going even faster!  If you’re not “moving with the movement”, stay to the right.  Allow room for others to pass if they so choose.  It is their right.  Nothing is more frustrating than patrons who stand side-by-side on the escalator and block others from safe passage.


  • Taking the Elevator? – Always allow exiting persons room to actually “exit” in a clear and roomy space.  So many people almost kiss the elevator doors waiting for them to open, only to find a group of people struggling to get past you as you either back up, move sideways, or heaven forbid, inch or force your way in before others have exited. The old rule “ladies first” is still sound…and that is superseded by “pregnant ladies first”.  Also consider those with strollers, wheelchairs, canes, luggage, etc.


  • Bathroom Break – Sure, “when you gotta go, you gotta go” right?  In most cases, it’s not that urgent though…and when possible, ALWAYS allow a pregnant woman to cut ahead. That certainly applies to the elderly, disabled (if using other than the designated stall), and the obviously ill.  Parents with very young children should also be considered as they are often in the “training period” and are trying to prevent “an accident” in a public place.  It’s just about being considerate.

 

  • Keep It Clean – Do your part when using the facilities/bathroom.  If you splash everywhere, use towelettes to clean up your mess.  Refrain from tossing your discards into the bin.  You’re not Kobe Bryant and chance are you missed…and maybe even left it on the floor as you departed. Same goes for your seat surroundings – whether in the arena, theatre, or fast food restaurant.  Pick up after yourself.  How many times did you mama tell you that?!  Sure, there’s a cleaning crew that “gets paid for that” but I’m pretty sure they have plenty to clean in addition to your litter so why not respect your own surroundings as well as those that share your space?


If you practice these little niceties when out in public, chances are you will have a much better time, avoid a heated argument, fight, or worse – a trip to the pokey and a viral posting on YouTube of the trip “downtown”.
 
So…in my edited version of the popular tag line from the old series “Hill Street Blues”, “Hey, Let’s Be Nice Out There”! 🙂 

 

 

 

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