Thursday, May 9, 2013

I Will Not Miss...

I begin to grow heartily tired of the etiquette and nonsense so fashionable in this city.

George Mason

Yesterday morning I had to stop at the token booth to add some money onto my metrocard.  There were two women ahead of me, I stood patiently awaiting my turn.  Patience is one of the gifts seniorhood has given me.  I am no longer that Type A personality who gets stressed when things don't move as quickly as I want them to. 

So, when Woman 1 finished her transaction, Woman 2 stepped up to the window, and before she was finished, a man appeared out of  nowhere and began pushing his $20 towards the clerk. It was obvious that he was planning to cut in front of me. Now, I may have gained patience, but I am still nobody's fool.  Besides, I'd already gotten drenched in the storm and wasn't in the best of moods. (We had three inches of rain yesterday)

"Excuse me", I said rather harshly. "I've been waiting here in line. Please step behind me." I really didn't even have to say 'please' to this moron, but I was raised to say 'please' and 'thank you', and you just can't turn that off. "Oh, I am sorry", he replied.  Sorry, my butt. If he was sorry, he never would have tried it in the first place.I knew darned he saw an older woman with a cane and figured it would be easy to cut me off.  I'd be too scared to say anything. 

Then, as a further dampener on my day, on my way to work I stopped at MacDonalds. I absolutely love their fruit and maple oatmeal. I took my place and stood behind a woman who was busily texting someone on her phone, but she was definitely standing on line.  As I waited, a man walked in from the street and right up to the counter to order, so I politely asked her if she were in line.  Talk about snippy.  She snapped at me, "Yes, I am."  Oh, boy, I sure didn't need that.  I was still thinking about that man.  So, I not so politely advised her that if she were in line, then she should pay more attention to what was going on around her, that people were walking in off the street and cutting in front, that she may not have any place to go, but I had to go to work.

It really made me think about all of the other hings I will not have to deal with once I retire. At the top of the list, of course, is the subway, but I am not going to dwell on that here. Gone will be those crowded subway rides where I stand 'fuming' while healthy young people sit.  Hip, Hip, Hooray!!! I'll  hav no reason to go into the city.   There is a bus in front of my house that will take me any place I choose to go.  But, aside from the subway, there are a few other things I will not miss.

It irks me when people stop short in front of me...especially those who come to a dead stop on the subway stairs to pull out their cell phone.  The station near my home is a very busy station, and in the evening, it is a mob scene trying to get up the stairs.  Never fails, some dimwit will stop dead on the stairway, whip out their phone, and call their household to let them know they are on their way home...causing a massive traffic jam.  They can't wait until they get to the top of the stairs to call home?

On the other hand, we have those who are in such a rush to catch the train that they race down the stairs disregarding everyone around them.  One misstep and down they go...and pity the poor person who may be in front of them.  Subway stairs have metal coverings so safety is definitely an issue here.

People who text message while walking on the sidewalk.  I cannot stand it. They either crawl along blocking your way or are so engrossed in their texting that they walk right into you.  They never step out of the way for you because they don't see you. It's always up to you to move.

Holding the door for someone who brushes through without even saying thank you. You stand there like a fool, holding the door, and they squeeze right on past you, leaving you in the lurch, standing there holding the door for them like you are their personal doorman.  If I catch it in time, I'll let go of the door and let it close on them.  I know, two wrongs don't make a right, but it does give one the feeling of satisfaction.

Women who wear the highest heels they can possibly find and then cannot walk in them, tying everyone  up who is walking behind them. And along the lines of clothing, I cannot stand it when women wear skirts so shorts that everyone sees up their crotch as they are climbing the stairs.

And, of course,  you knew I would go back to the subway. It goes without saying that subway etiquette flew the coop somewhere after the 70's. Although I am blessed to usually get a seat, at least 70 percent of the time I have had to stand for a few stops  until someone gets off.  Most people bury their heads in their newspapers or electronic gadgets and don't look up.  Sort of like  'see no evil, hear no evil"; in other words, if they don't see you, they don't have to give up their seat.

Customers in the bank who wait until they get up to the teller's window to fill out their withdrawal or deposit sheet.  We're all expected to wait for them. They just don't care.  I have my slips filled out before I even leave my house.  Personally, I don't think they should be allowed to do that.  The teller should take the next person in line while the customer fills it out.

People no longer know how to walk on the sidewalk.  For example, those  groups who insist on walking three or four abreast when walking with friends really frustrate me. Why should I have to step aside to let all of them pass?  After all, I am on a cane.  Where is the respect?

Bike messengers are the pits. They are more dangerous than cabs.They feel they are above the law and whiz through traffic stops.  The innocent walker who has the right of way doesn't know what hit him when he is struck.  I've had more than my share of near misses.  One guy rally had gall.  I had the light and was crossing the street when I glanced sideways and saw him zooming right at me. I froze and just stood there.  The moron actually had the nerve to yell at ME, who had the right of way. Takes all kinds and they are all in the city.

But all has not been so bad. There are some beautiful memories  of the city that I will forever cherish. One such memory was that day in Washington Square Park when that handsome man sat next to me and said, "Would you mind if I sat here?" Who knew then that he was my future.  It will be 21 years in August that we have been together. But as I grow older, my patience is wearing thin.  It will be nice to watch you from a distance for a change. 

The greater our hurry, the longer the way;
the greater our patience, the sooner
we reach the goal.
German proverb


  1. Retirement can't come a moment too soon! -sigh-

  2. Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww Loving that sweet memory and picturing you on that park bench. :0)

  3. Commuting always brings with it lots of pet peeves!

  4. Oh yes, I can certainly appreciate your frustrations....I nodded my head to each and every one of your points!

    Not long now my dear!

    What a sweet story about the park bench!