Would It Kill You to Stop Doing That?
- A Modern Guide to Manners
- Narrated by: Henry Alford
- Length: 5 hrs and 47 mins
- Unabridged Audiobook
- Release date: 11-01-12
- Language: English
- Publisher: Hachette Audio
Troubled by the absence of good manners in his day-to-day life by the people who clip their toenails on the subway or give three-letter replies to one's laboriously crafted missives, Alford embarks on a journey to find out how things might look if people were on their best behavior a tad more often.
He travels to Japan (the "Fort Knox Reserve" of good manners) to observe its culture of collective politesse. He interviews etiquette experts both likely (Judith Martin, Tim Gunn) and unlikely (a former prisoner, an Army sergeant). He plays a game called Touch the Waiter. And he volunteers himself as a tour guide to foreigners visiting New York City in order to do ground-level reconnaissance on cultural manners divides. Along the way (in typical Alford style) he also finds time to teach Miss Manners how to steal a cab; designates the World's Most Annoying Bride; and tosses his own hat into the ring, volunteering as an online etiquette coach.
Ultimately, by tackling the etiquette questions specific to our age - such as "Why shouldn't you ask a cab driver where's he's from?", "Why is posting baby pictures on Facebook a fraught activity?", and "What's the problem with 'No problem'?" - Alford finds a wry and warm way into a subject that has sometimes been seen as pedantic or elitist. And in this way, he looks past the standard "do's" and "don'ts" of good form to present an illuminating, seriously entertaining book about grace and civility, and how we can simply treat each other better.
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Emma on 16-09-12
Very Interesting Book
If you could sum up Would It Kill You to Stop Doing That? in three words, what would they be?
I enjoy etiquette books and this one described various pitfalls with interesting examples of what to do and what not to do in a humorous manner. His examples of his own wrongdoings were amusing and kept him from ever becoming preachy.
What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?
I found the author's somewhat nasal voice rather distracting at first but when I became used to it I found his narration lively and sympathetic.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
By G on 23-09-13
Glad I read it, do not like the sarcasm
Content is absolutely great, yet listening to it, I get a sarcastic vibe, which is unfortunate. Again, listened to it twice, great content.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful