I try to be a polite person. I have always believed I should treat other people the way I want to be treated by them. I’d like to think that when I am polite to others then they will return that politeness. Most of the time it works that way.
Have you ever witnessed how rude a person can be to someone else? I used to see it a lot at fast food restaurants. I’m serious. Do we feel that we’re allowed to be rude at these places? Is it because the food is so bad that we are justified to be cranky? Some people seem to think they deserve five star service from a one star fast food chain; but the people behind the counter are not there to serve us. They are trained to take our orders and our money. They are also trained to upsell their company’s products. (Would you like fries with that?) They are salespeople and money-changers, not servers.
Throughout my years, I have occasionally seen people get really snotty with a fast food worker. I haven’t seen it lately because I don’t eat fast food anymore. I’m too old and overweight for that. Now I see it at convenience stores. Same story I guess. Almost always the worker is female and is of small stature. She often appears timid — like a lamb. But they are usually not lambs. They have also been trained to remain polite when faced with customer rudeness. Don’t be confrontational, but also don’t back away. They stand their ground.
I suppose the rude customer feels like s/he deserves a certain amount of respect because of — whatever. I don’t know, but my respect goes to the counter person for working a job that is most likely not her/his chosen profession and only making minimum wage while doing it. That shows a certain amount of strength of character.
Those are the kind of characters I think make heros in novels; someone who can overcome timidness and fears to face whatever adversity that is thrown at them. The best main character is an ordinary person who does extraordinary things — willingly or not.