Well, folks, I’ve got to be honest — I don’t have much gas left in the ol’ tank tonight. I stayed up late, got up early, and had a long, long day, finally getting home at around ten o’clock. Plus, I’ve got another hellish nine am meeting tomorrow staring me in the face, so I’m going to do the smart thing (unlike everything I described yesterday) and get the hell to bed at a reasonable hour. So I’ll keep this brief, if such a thing is humanly possible.
(And hey, if whatever little snack I whip up for you tonight doesn’t leave you with a full tummy, then go raid the archives. Search for something interesting in the search box up there — chances are, if it’s silly, obscene, or just plain grotesque, then I’m all over it like stink on UPN. Go on, give it a shot.)
Anyway, I think I can manage to stay awake long enough to relate a recent experience I’ve had. It happened a couple of days ago. It was mid-morning, maybe ten or ten-thirty. I was rolling into work, as is my custom. (But no longer my habit — damn those nine am meetings!) And I stopped to hold the door for a woman walking into the building behind me.
(Yeah, I’m a helluva guy, I know. I’m a regular chivalrous throwback, I am. Knight in shining armor, and all that. Stop, I’m gonna blush.
Okay, so really I saw her back there, and she was kind of pretty, so I decided to see whether she smelled nice. Are you happy now? Look, it doesn’t matter why I held the damned door — I held it, okay? I held it, and she walked through it. Period.
Oh, but by the way, in case you’re interested… yes. Yes, she did. Lavender, I think it was.)
So, I held the door, and she walked through. Now, most people would say, ‘thank you‘ at this point. That would be nice. Other folks might say, ‘thanks‘ or ‘how nice‘ or ‘well, aren’t you sweet‘. Or ‘Hey, that deserves a peek at my boobs!‘ All of these things are perfectly acceptable, and much appreciated.
(Especially the boob thing. And even more so if you’re a woman! Bonus!)
Other, less civilized people, don’t say anything at all when a door is held for them. Some might nod, or smile, which is okay. But many of them won’t acknowledge the gesture at all, just walking past as if there were no door, or holder, or favor being done. Insensitive bastards, they are. The appropriate response to them is also silent, whether it’s a sad shake of the head, or an exasperated eyeroll. Or, in a weaker moment, a hearty flip of the old bird at their back. Godless heathens.
But this woman did neither of these things — she didn’t say something nice, nor did she say nothing at all. What she said instead was this:
Just like that. Completely flat voice — almost no emotion whatsoever. Like she just found a nickel on the ground. Not a dollar, or a quarter, or even something marginally useful like a dime. Those might have gotten her all wet and juicy. But not a held door. All the door got from her was a terse, half-hearted:
What the hell does that mean, anyway? Is it ‘hey, great‘ like ‘ooh, look, a peon to hold that pesky door open‘? Or maybe it’s more like a ‘hey, great, I might have walked into that door if you hadn’t been there‘ kind of thing. Or ‘hey, this lavender crap I’m wearing is pretty cool‘. Whatever it means, it doesn’t sound terribly grateful or thankful, which is what it should be. Especially since I had the power — and for a split second, the urge — to face-plant the bitch with the door I was holding, and knock her ass back to the curb.
So remember that, folks, the next time someone holds a door for you. Give ’em at least a grin, or some kind of signal that you appreciate their effort. Better yet, thank them and wish them a nice day. (Or do the boob thing. Really, it’s all good.) But whatever you do, don’t confuse them with some mumbled irrelevant nonsense, or you might find yourself tasting a doorknob. We door-holders are generally nice people, but we’re not gonna put up with crap, all right?Permalink | 3 Comments