#AAFS2017 Rules of Civility for all at NOLA – “SPIT not in the Fire,” etc

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For the American Academy of Forensic Science conventioneers. There’s 92 more of these from a 1888 reprint of George Washington’s copy of Rules of Civility & Decent Behaviour in Company and Conversation (starts on pg. 13). Updated for modernity and relevance.

“The thoughtful reader will recognize in this rule the germ and spirit of all rules of civility and the universal key to good behavior.”

1st~EVERY Action done in Company, ought to be with Some Sign of Respect, to those that are Present {Except those who profess to be scientists without proffer of data}

2d~When in Company, put not your Hands to any Part of the Body, not usualy Discovered {…hmm, that would exclude some at the Wine and Cheese gatherings}.

3d~ Shew Nothing to your Friend that may affright him. {Do not mention #45 during the meeting}.

4th~ In the Presence of Others sing not to yourself with a humming Noise, nor Drum, with your Fingers or Feet. {Do not affect obsequiousness in the presence of your betters}.

5th~ IF YOU Cough, Sneeze, Sigh, or Yawn, do it not Loud, but Privately; and Speak not your Yawning, but put Your handkerchief or Hand before your face and turn aside. {Tweet quietly; set mobiles to ‘vibrate’}.

6th~ SLEEP not when others Speak, Sit not when others stand, Speak not when yoU Should hold your Peace, walk not on when others Stop. {Do not gaggle in the hallways around those mentioned in 4th Rule}.

7th~ PUT not off your Cloths in the presence of Others, nor go out your Chamber half Drest. {Unlikely considering the expected weather problems during Mardi Gras this year}.

8th~ AT PLAY and at Fire its Good manners to give Place to the last Commer, and affect not to Speak Louder than ordenary. {Some senior AAFSers come late and are hard of hearing}.

9th~ SPIT not in the Fire, nor Stoop low before it neither Put your Hands into the Flames to warm them, nor Set your Feet upon the Fire especially if there be meat before it. {I’ve seen this at Morton’s Steak House a few times}.

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About csidds

Dr. Michael Bowers is a long time forensic consultant in the US and international court systems.
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