For certain tasks in Civil 3D, I have Quick Properties (QP) enabled. I started noticing in 2013 that when QP is enabled and I select an entity, the focus is removed from the AutoCAD window. In other words, the crosshairs change to the pointer. So if I want to pick a Grip or a command on the contextual ribbon - it requires an extra pick. One pick to restore focus to the window and a second pick to activate the grip or menu item.
In this image, the manhole is selected, QP is visible, and the crosshairs have been replaced by the standard windows pointer.