"Do not attract attention to yourself in public."
I would love to share this tip with the man who stood next to me on a packed express train recently. He was silent for a few stops and then, suddenly, began to yell "My vagina is on fire!" over and over. Had he possessed a vagina and had it actually been ablaze, I would have forgiven this transgression, although striking a match to one's genitals on a crowded subway car seems a violation of social mores in and of itself.
"Never take more than your share—whether of the road in driving a car, of chairs on a boat or seats on a train..."
Apparently a great many men have never bothered to read Etiquette; if they had, perhaps we wouldn't see so many seated with their knees spread so wide that they form a ninety-degree angle, suggesting a very sensitive case of elephantiasis of the testes.
This is like an urban mating call: "I have giant nuts."
Also in violation of this rule are women and men who feel that their bag deserves its own seat, and who roll their eyes when asked to move it to their laps. Has it paid the $2.50 fare? Perhaps it would have a more authentic riding experience were it to stand, wedged between two surly strap-hangers, during rush hour.
"The small boy’s delight in drawing a stick along a picket fence should be curbed in the nursery!"
I once shared a subway car with a toddler who banged a spoon against the pole repeatedly while his mother pretended not to notice. I do not normally think babies can be fairly called "assholes," but in this case I must reconsider.
"People who picnic along the public highway leaving a clutter of greasy paper and swill...choose a disgusting way to repay the land-owner for the liberty they took in temporarily occupying his property."
Given the dazzling array of portable, bar-shaped foods available at grocery stores and newsstands, I find it puzzling that people find it acceptable to eat meals that require utensils on public transportation. Chinese food and fried chicken are ubiquitous, and I once even saw a woman eat soup. It goes without saying that trash is left all over the floor, which is offensive to everyone, not just the "landowner," unless it provides temporary entertainment value, as during one recent ride in which my friends and I got to play that classic children's game "Mountain Dew or Pee?" with an unmarked, half-empty open cup of yellow liquid. Whichever it was, I'm sure Emily would not have approved.
*I am totally going to write one as soon as I finish watching season five of The Real Housewives of Orange County...