Oct 15, 2009

This image was lifted from the internet. It was taken from a source that didn't have it tagged as a copy-protected photo, therefore I'm assuming it is in the public domain. Today's post is about line etiquette. Americans have a long standing respect for the rules of the line. Longtime readers may recall that Merle Wayne Sneed once famously got into a screaming match with a guy who was trying to bust the Southwest Airlines queue at LAX, in order to check his bottle of tequilla. Never mind that about a hundred people (me included) were waiting patiently to check in for a flight. In that case, the line buster was told to go to the end of the line by a couple of gate agents, but he kept trying different windows until he managed to succeed. As it turned out, he had already checked in, but mistakenly thought he could just waltz through security with a giant bottle of tequilla. They sent him back to check it. In the end, it turned into a giant production, requiring the whole process to stop while SWA looked for a box, so that the dumb ass could check the bottle. I can hardly be blamed for calling him a dumb bastard or he for telling me to "shut up, old man", I suppose. Luckily, despite threats on both sides, no punches were thrown, nor arrests made. I think reasonable people would agree that a lone guy trying to slip in to line ahead of a hundred weary travelers would find few supporters for his position. Now, imagine that you are supposed to meet a friend at the movies. When you arrive at the theater, you find a line of 100 people waiting to buy tickets. You walk down the line, looking for your friend, whom you find near the front of the line. Is it permissible to join your friend in line or must you go to the back of the line and wait to buy your ticket? Seems like a silly question, doesn't it? Of course you just join your friend in line. In the alternative, your friend could simply buy your ticket, along with his or hers, while you waited by the door. The Seafood King, Some Guy Named Bob and I went to play golf very early this morning. We were relegated to an early tee time because there was some old man golf club playing beginning at 7:30 am. Our starting time was 7:07 am. There was another group between our time and the old man brigade. The Seafood King and I arrived together and unloaded our equipment. He got ready more quickly than me and left me putting on my shoes, while he went into the clubhouse. I went in about a minute or two later and found him in the line of about ten guys, 2 people from the front. I joined him in line. After we paid, an old guy in line said, "Sir, sir!" It finally dawned on me that he was talking to me. I acknowledged him and he told me that I should wait in line, like the rest of the old buzzards (my word, not his). I explained that my friend and I were together and were simply checking in together. He was not satisfied with that explanation. It wasn't a particularly rancorous exchange and in the end, I told him, "that's life", shrugged and and went on my way. Seemed right at the time. Of course, he was in the foursome right behind us all day. Things in this blog represented to be fact, may or may not actually be true. The writer is frequently wrong, sometimes just full of it, but always judgmental and cranky

8 comments:

Barbara said...

Did any golf balls come just a little too close to your head? A whispered "Fore" perhaps?

Don't travel to Latin America! Lines are a joke to much of that culture. I can remember almost missing a flight once because I kept getting shoved out of the way as I yelled "La fila". Maybe that wasn't the right word...

Kurt said...

I expect people to follow the rules, but they often don't, and I just let it go. The truth is, the assholes will get there first, and the only way to get there before them is to be an asshole too.

Megan said...

Been taking the train this week. I get on at the start of the line, so when it arrives, I have to wait until all the northbound passengers disembark.

Every morning I watch in wonder as many of my fellow southbound travellers stand inconveniently near the doors, impeding the progress of those departing, just so they can be first to get on.

It's not even close to a full train...

Reya Mellicker said...

Good manners are, to me, a matter of common sense. When rules must be followed, no matter what the circumstances, well, that's fascism.

You were polite and behaved appropriately. xx

Bella Rum said...

I hate line breakers, but I'm passive aggressive. So I talk loudly about them so they will hear what I think of them. I also hate passive aggressive people. Why can't they just be direct?

Steve said...

You were correct. It's appropriate to join a friend in line. That is, indeed, life.

tut-tut said...

hullo, Merle

Annie Ha said...

How did you manage playing in your group and the "old buzzard" group at the same time? What? I didn't say that...