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By Chukwudi Anagbogu

An uncle of mine once spotted a beautiful lady somewhere near a carwash. On making enquiries from people around, he gathered that she had a stall at the nearby market where she sold fresh tomatoes. He had wanted to accost her instantly, but thought against it. He wasn't one of the numerous men who run after girls shamelessly on the way. He decided to look out for her at the said market. After having his car washed, he decided to drive down to the market to check on the lady. He had no plans to immediately woo her. He just wanted to have a closer look at her. After all, was it not said that "a mere glance at a plate of soup would either motivate one to increase the quantity of garri one is to eat it with or reduce it." He disguised as a customer as he effortlessly located her stall where she was already seated facing her wares.
"How much is your tomatoes? " he asked.
"Fifty fifty naira, " she responded more or less carried away with the smartphone she was operating.
"Won't you sell twenty naira?" he asked trying to sound as businesslike as possible. She stopped in her tracks and threw an offensive glance at him.
"Bia this man, if you don't want to buy tomatoes, you get out of my shop. Why not take it free of charge, " she thundered and hissed to the consternation of some of the passersby. Undaunted, the man replied in a different tune.
"Nne are we quarrelling? I just asked a question, or is it wrong to price something again? "
"What type of question is this one? Please if they have sent you, tell them you've not seen me," she enthused.
Of course, my uncle quietly melted into thin air. If the lady had known his true mission, she would not have shown her true nature!

If you have ever been to a well-run company, you will be charmed by the way its staff,especially the customer care heads attend to customers. They exude politeness and courtesy at its peak! No matter how you present your grievances, all they would do is to pacify you. That is what we need to imbibe in our day to day lives.

A temperamental person may not be able to succeed in getting his/her problems solved in a bureaucratic set up. The saucy/crude nature of many of these 'office workers' could ignite the beast in anyone. Secretaries, clerks and even messengers see themselves as gods and goddesses, and try to exert more influence than even their employers. It is in Nigeria that one would enter an office and meet the staff engrossed in private conversations or even watching movies or doing other irrelevances, while they have a multitude of people to attend to. When you try to call them to order, you would receive the insult of your life!

Most couple fall out just because of lack of manner of approach from either side. A woman would try to ride on her husband while the husband would try to prove to the wife that he's in charge. At the markets, buses and other public places,people quarrel and exchange words with people they don't even know, over issues that are not really weighty.
Not applying diplomacy and courtesy could land one in troubles one may never come out of. Sometimes, it may lead to fisticuffs. You can lose your job or a favor, just because you cannot bridle your tongue. The consequences are endless.
Offences can be overlooked and forgiven just because you admitted to them and politely put the records straight. You may lose a case or even receive serious backlash when you table your grievances discourteously. If you are aggrieved, it does not permit you to be vulgar or insult the person who has offended you. Courtesy and manner of approach can touch even the hardest mind. It can elicit remorse from the most unrepentant person.

It is only someone without education or domestic training that talks to people without regards. No matter who you are and the height you have attained in life, you must not treat your subordinates with scorn and disdain. It may interest you to know that your subordinates have a role to play on your continuous elevation or otherwise. Granted, a lot of people take their domestic and personal problems to their places of works and transfer the resultant aggression on 'innocent' customers, but is that right?

As a young girl, you don't need to insult or scorn a man to show him that you don't like him. You can actually tell a man off courteously and politely, and still achieve your aim. Ladies who insult men do not end well. You rather be silent than insulting!

It is a mark of bad parenting to use derogative, insulting and demeaning words on one's children. Most parents are guilty of this. When you use words such as 'idiot', 'stupid', 'nonentity', etc, you are further destroying the child. Even teachers are not left out. Diplomacy, politeness and Courtesy are requisite tools in the formation and correction of a child!

Let us treat one another with respect, age and class notwithstanding. Being polite and courteous does not make you weak and powerless, rather it portrays you in good light. No matter how provoked you are, eat a humble pie. This is one of the best ways to show godliness.
Chukwudi Anagbogu (08063305177


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