Up. Down. Up. Down.

Elevators are scary, not because of their malfunctioning, but rather, because we are uncomfortable being in close proximity to other people — strangers, most times. For isn’t it the glance of a fellow passenger that unnerves you, not the grumble of the machinery slowing to a stop?  But…

You enter the box-like contraption; settle into the back wall. Four people stand facing the doors as if looking at an altar. You walk past them. Upon seeing you enter, the dark-haired woman of about forty turns toward you, just enough to look you up and down without making eye contact. You look back at her. Caught in your gaze, she makes that familiar, noncommittal, waiting-for-the-ride-to-commence gesture — she throws her eyebrows to the sky and quickly returns them to their original position, seemingly saying, “I see you, but I don’t have anything to say to you.” Just as the grey doors begin to solemnly close, a couple enters, engrossed in a heated discussion, unaware that their voices were a few decibels more than necessary:

GIRL: Gawd! You’re too assuming!

GUY: Huh?! What made you say that?

GIRL: Is that a condom in your wallet?


As if you all were never there, each of you look away, choking in your own laughter.

This begs the question, “what is correct elevator etiquette?” Luckily, our friends over at www.elevatorrules.com have cataloged all of the “DOs and DON’Ts” of elevator use. In their “Once the Doors Close” section they say, “When talking in an elevator, be considerate. Talk softly and do not assume that everyone in the car cares about what you are saying.” This rule-of-thumb, however, is lost in most of us, giving every random Tom, Dick and Harry — and Peggy Sues — a treasure-trove of gossip and something to laugh at during coffee breaks.

In some cases though, you get to pick up valuable lessons in optimism:

GIRL 1: Naniniwala ka ba sa long distance relationship?

[Do you believe in long-distance relationship?]

GIRL 2: Oo naman, naniniwala ako. Kasi ISDA nga at KAWALI nagtatagpo.

[Of course, I do. You see, a fish and a frying pan can be together even when they’re worlds apart.]

Sometimes, you get a taste of woman power! Yeah!

LADY 1: Bah, men! They always think that most women’s lives revolve entirely around pleasing them!

LADY 2: …

LADY 1: Raul complains that I always wear the same clothes!

LADY 2: …

LADY 1: But when I did get new clothes, do you know who noticed them first?

LADY 2: Who?

LADY 1: His gay friend!

If you’re lucky, you’ll hear about responsible parenting:

DAD 1: My wife and I are on wit’s end finding means to have my daughter eat her vegetables!

DAD 2: I think that’s common among children. I’m wondering myself why the reluctance to eat their veggies…

DAD 3: Maybe, you should employ guilt on them…

DAD 1: How does that work?

DAD 3: Well, I tell my son that he’s lucky he still have vegetables to eat, while most kids have to sleep hungry. That spiel almost always prod him to finish his beans.

DAD 2: Oh, I tried that once with my three-year old daughter… It didn’t work.

DAD 1 and 3: How so?

DAD 2: When I told her she’s lucky she still has vegetables to eat, while others go hungry… she paused a bit, asked her mom for a sandwich bag and began scooping up the veggies into the bag, mumbling: Dad, can you give my veggies to those poor kids you mentioned?

Smart kid!

… and my favorite was courtesy of a drop-dead gorgeous woman dressed in blue sweatpants and a white t-shirt, which was barely visible poking out from beneath her grey sweatshirt. She entered, pressed her floor button and stepped to the corner. As the elevator began its journey up, the bombshell fished out her cell phone, dialed a number and imploringly declared:

WOMAN: Honey… please listen first. I don’t need a cock to make you happy, you know that. Besides, those who have it are mostly dicks!

You know, she has a point.

You see, more than being scary, elevator rides can be educational and eye-opening. Can you imagine your daily elevator ride being what you look forward to every day upon waking? Oh, and if you happen to die in an elevator, just heed  Sam Levenson’s advice: don’t forget to push the ‘UP’ button.


About Seeing with Brahmin eyes
My sense of humor can be keen, sarcastic, silly or corny -- sometimes all at once. I enjoy meeting new people with no preconceived ideas about what or what is not possible. You get much more out of life by being open minded and willing. I'm an easy going, good-natured person who loves life and loves people. I'm both optimistic and realistic and pretty objective when it comes to assessing situations, events, etc. In general I am a very positive person and you'll usually find we with a smile on my face.

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