…because you’re in my way

Posted on April 26, 2009


You shall not pass!

"You shall not pass!"

Excuse me, but could you move please? I mean, I know you’re a very important person, and I’m sure your friend is too, but the two of you are somehow managing to block the entire sidewalk. Who do you think you are? Gandalf? If you could at least walk! Oh…you are walking? That’s funny, because when I walk I progress from one point to another, whereas you seem to be standing in one spot. Oh wait, as I look more closely (which I’ve had ample time to do as I’ve been stuck behind you for the last five minutes) I can see you have actually moved several inches. Perhaps even a foot. Never mind, the store I’m going to is coming up and I’ll be able to get away from…oh crap. You’re going in too?

Well, at least in the store I’m able to actually move around and get things done.

Oops. Except for this aisle. Look at you there, puzzling over whether to buy Charmin or Royale while your buggy sits in the middle of the floor. Crap, and I can’t back up because there’s another one of you there. What do you guys do? Travel in packs?

Glad that’s all over. Now I can check out and be on my…oh double crap. Of course you’re ahead of me in line. Oh, will you look at that? The cashier has rung through all your items and suddenly now it dawns on you that you may just have to pay for them. I mean really, who could have seen that coming? There we go, get out the money and…no, no, no, she doesn’t want exact change, you moron. That’s it, that’s it, ten dollars and forty one, two, three…uh oh. Missing that last penny? How about if I give you a penny? Would you take it? Just bend over for a moment and…ah! You found the little bugger. Good for you. Now you can leave and I’ll never have to see you again. So nice to have known you. Hope to run into you again sometime. Say, fifty years or so after the heat death of the universe.

Free at last, free at last. I’ll just pop down the escalator to the subway and…well, well, look who’s ahead of me. That’s fine, when you get off the escalator there’s a huge corridor not even you can block, so no worries. I’ll be able to scoot past you and…um. Okay…you’re at the end of the escalator now. The ground is no longer moving you, you’ve got to actually use your feet. Come on, come on! Go one direction or the other! There are people behind you who can’t just stop and wait around until you get your bearings straight! I understand you don’t want to make a commitment until you’re absolutely sure where you’re going — after all, it would be a tragedy if you were to go the wrong way and end up in Oklahoma or something — but for now,  just get out of the way! I bet you do the same thing when you get on the subway train, too, don’t you? Walk into the car and then stop dead? Look around for a while as passengers try to squeeze on behind you? And when waiting for a train, do you stand in front of the door so that those trying to get off can’t, which means, of course, that those trying to get on also can’t? Sure you do. Of course you do.

You know what? I’m going to walk home. I’ll just leave the station, pick a few nice side streets, and let my feet carry me on my journey. I’ve got a Metro pass, so it’s not like I’ve lost any money. At least I won’t be running across you any more. It’s a nice day. I should have done that in the first place.

Ah, look at that. Sunshine, people out going from place to place. This is the way to go.

Okay, now why is that truck backing over the sidewalk ahead of me? He’s not stopping, is he?