Saturday, January 29, 2005

People I'd like to maim, Vol. 1

It's the little things that kill
Tearin' at my brain again
-- Bush (the band, not the presidents)

Today I'd like to focus on people who think their own convenience takes precedence over the needs of others, people who will cheerfully waste several minutes of another person's time to save themselves 20 seconds.

Exhibit A: The We're-Too-Cool-to-Check-Baggage Crowd. I saw a few of these this past weekend. You get a couple--or, God help us, an entire family--each member of which has packed a week's worth of clothes into a carry-on bag the size of an English mastiff. They drag these behemoths onto the plane and bring the line to a halt while they find and fill an empty overhead bin originally designated to hold the belongings of three passengers. At that point, those of us in the "Purse-and-Laptop" gang, those of us who GET THE HELL OUT OF PEOPLE'S WAY and kindly store our carry-ons under the row in front of us, have to sweat it out in our now even tinier seat because there's no room for so much as a coat in the compartment above our heads.

Then while the rest of us slouch off to the baggage claim at the end of the flight, they trot breezily towards the exit, toss their hair over their shoulder, and cast glances of pity and disdain at us plebes who were so uncouth as to have--gasp!--suitcases.

Then, while crossing the road on the way to the garage, one of their slick "little" carry-on's wheels gets stuck in a pothole, and a shuttle bus with faulty brakes puts them out of our misery.

Hmm. I didn't think that would have such a happy ending.

Exhibit B: People who leave shopping carts in parking spaces instead of returning them to the store or walking fifteen feet to the corral.

Must stop. Seeing red again.





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Jeri Smith-Ready is a Maryland author of books for teens and adults.

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