Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Open Letter to People on Line

Dear People on Line:

Lines are annoying - we all know that; but queuing up and patiently awaiting one's turn is the mark of a civilized society (or an inefficient one - I haven't decided which).

Anyway, one of the things that you apparently haven't noticed is that the time you spend on line can be used for more productive things than blasting your iPod so loud that everyone withing 300 yards of you can hear how much you love"Dancing on the Ceiling" (Best. Song. Ever!) or calling your friend to give her a blow-by-blow account of your progress through the line.

With that in mind, here are a few tips to make the whole experience easier for everyone:

Please stop looking back at me for fear that I'm going to move the little plastic bar that separates your groceries from mine. I promise not to try to make you pay for my orange juice, and also promise not to steal your prunes. I'm even willing to sign an agreement to that effect.

Try not to crawl up my back. Much like honking your horn in a traffic jam, it's not going to make the people move any more quickly, and it places you at severe risk of having me put my foot up your ass.

It helps for you to be prepared when your turn comes rather than acting surprised when the cashier explains that they're expecting money in exchange for the goods that you've selected.

On a related note, exact change is a wonderful thing - but not if you have to empty the contents of your pocketbook to search for that last penny. Use a nickel instead, secure in the knowledge that the four pennies you'll receive back will make your quest for copper that much easier to fulfill the next time around.

As Idle correctly points out, the bank teller window is neither the proper time nor place to balance your checkbook. It's already been scientifically proven that bank lines move slower than a one legged sloth and there's no need for you to make it even worse.

Finally, I know it's winter, but when your transaction is complete, it's okay to move away from the counter rather than standing in everyone's way while you bundle up like Nanook of the North for the 20 second walk to your car.

I hope this helps.

Your Friend,

Joe