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Irish women in public


Irish woman standing


Personal space and cultural difference

One of my least-favorite of my habits is the irritability I feel when people are insensitive about personal space and physical movement.

I get quite angry, sometimes, and this is especially true on public walkways because it can be an ongoing, progressive sort of disturbance. It's when I let it grow that I disappoint myself.

I'm never really completely rude, I think; but I can develop a deep sort of scowl, sometimes, and a generally cloudy demeanor — the kind of bad attitude that has momentum. These are not my proudest moments.

The reason that I know my disgruntlement is wrong, or at least the reason that I'm ashamed of it, is that I've lived in cultures that have great variation in the way people move in public and the way that they regard personal space. In other words, since I know that manners of walking in public are largely determined by culture, I know that it's not right to get upset with individuals who walk in a way that I know is particular to their own.