Respect for others has never gone out of style, unlike the popularity of using yes ma’am or sir. The hardest thing about using this phrase it getting comfortable hearing it said. When little kids use it, you think “sweet kid.” Hearing the phrase used by a member of the military reminds you of how ingrained respect for others is in their lives.

As a twenty-something grabbing fast food, it makes you feel a bit creeped out when the kid behind the register says “yes, ma’am” to you. Something about those simple words makes you blush, mumble, and try to get away quickly. But why? Does it make us feel old or are we just nervous about the use of the respectful term? Maybe we just don’t know how to answer this phrase. It’s easy. Smile and say thank you. Make the person feel proud to say it to the next person.