Basic manners are important for everyone, but especially for those who live in New York City. New York City had a population of 8,550,405 as of July 2015, so residents are bound to interact with each other on a daily basis. Even though some people say we are living in divided times, where they might feel contentious towards others, showing some manners can go a long way to brighten someone’s day.
Because New Yorkers are stereotyped as rude, some NYU students think that being rude is a way to fit in. It’s not. As an NYC native, I know New Yorkers aren’t inherently rude; we just have places to be and things to do, so our time for nonsense is limited. City residents have a set of unwritten rules that facilitate the flow of the city. The first rule is to walk quickly. When people have places to be, walking slowly in front of them will only prevent them from getting there. The second rule is not to stop in one place, blocking the path. If you need to look at your phone for directions or talk to friends, stand anywhere except the space people use to travel. The last rule is to let people get off a subway or elevator before you get on. Entering before letting someone exit makes it difficult for those trying to do so. These rules are just common courtesy in the city, so they should apply to everyone — tourists and students included.
NYU students should learn and follow New York etiquette both on and off campus. Letting people off the elevators before you enter makes traffic smoother for everyone and standing away from the entrance to a dorm, building or classroom makes it simpler for people to enter and exit the building. Walking faster allows both you and the people behind you to reach your destinations quickly, and holding doors for the people right behind you is also kind. But loitering on campus and leaving your dishes on the table at the dining hall is impolite and interferes with the work of the cleaning staff at NYU.
Since New York is a large, crowded city, ignoring codes of manners is obnoxious and selfish. We all share the same public spaces, and the world does not revolve around each one of us, so we should all display manners and respect for those we share the city with.
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A version of this article appeared in the Monday, Feb. 13 print edition. Email Christopher Collado at [email protected]