Waiting In Line for YOUR Turn
I am going to try not to rant and rave here. However, I cannot make any promises. I want to first give a couple of personal experiences as examples to reference.
At the pharmacy of a certain health care group my better half stood in line to pick up his medication. Without belaboring the matter, saying that this is generally a long process is the short version. Seemingly, out of no where a woman walked in front of him and stood. He is not a small, calm, or overly friendly man. Even in the best of moods he can become let’s say, abrasive rather rapidly. This rude unexplained action prompted immediate response from him, he would later relay he was surprised. The response was, “EXCUSE ME”. To which the woman turned and as-a-matter-of-factly said, “I was in line but had to tell my husband something….” He went on to tell her that it would have been nice if she had demonstrated and utilized elementary manners by asking to return to the spot she had vacated for a short amount of time. However, he permitted her to go on and take the spot back after she was thoroughly embarrassed.
I was waiting in line at a local gas station with my son, there was a man and his small son ahead of me. They both left the line before they were called to the counter. During their absence several other patrons came inside and joined the line. The man and his son returned and stood along side of me now. He never made eye contact or said a word, I was conscious of them though. When the next clerk was available I simultaneously walked to the counter as he called out “next in line please”. The man and the small boy did not move but stayed off to the side. I do believe it may have been different had I been alone.
We are all in a hurried, pressed for time state, yet what makes one feel as though their time is any more precious than yours? These two scenarios are just recent occurrences that stand out, of course there have been others. In the first one here is my take the woman was presumptuous. Since she knew she had been in line she felt like she was entitled to return to that spot. I ask “why”, what would give her that impression. In the second example, the man was trying to be sly. He did not want to get in line because now others were ahead of him. He figured I would recall seeing him in line and I would either let him go ahead of me or he would make the attempt anyway. In both cases these individuals were wrong.
There are some very basic rules that must be applied when one is in line. There is also a state of mind one must embrace and conform to. As my spouse pointed out to his line busting perpetrator, manners would have helped. In either case the very least one should do is make eye contact, no matter what you think you owe that other person acknowledgement that they are present. The next thing that MUST occur is you must speak to this unknown individual and I might add it should be in a polite voice. These situations do not warrant a commanding oration. Finally, realize you are at the mercy of this unknown individual. This means if not handled properly you could end up on the receiving end of a less than pleasant predicament, in which the small scale result could be embarrassment.
I want to remind you that once you are in line you must stay in line to insure your spot. Let me make this clear, if you get out of line you loose your place. Your mere presence in a line does not insure that spot indefinitely, otherwise people would not camp out all night for tickets to concerts or to get specially priced retail items. The line signifies that there are going to be other people that have need of service and/or merchandise around the same time, and the only way to accommodate them all is for people to be served one at a time on a first come first serve basis. THUS, A LINE!
Newsflash: people you are not the only one on this Earth, stop behaving as though you are. Be patient, be respectful, and simply wait your turn.