Rage on the Elevator

Because there is a dire need.

Public Service Announcement: How to Wait for and Enter an Elevator
Dedicated to all Koreans who are astonished that someone is in the elevator. 

I understand that waiting for an elevator can be maddening. I get it. Because it's those few precious minutes that determine whether you are "on time" or "running late." And I, too, watch the small black screen with its red numbers, wondering how long it can possibly take for someone to get off or on the elevator one floor up. Why aren't the numbers changing? Why isn't someone pushing the button that closes the doors? What could they possibly be doing up there? And I find myself absolutely welling over with rage before I've even exited the building. I want to express to you that I feel your impatience. I sympathize and I empathize. But please remember to turn on your brain before you walk out the door. Have your coffee, take your vitamin, stand under a hot shower for 20 minutes - do whatever it takes to function like a human who possess a smidgeon of common sense and common courtesy.

When waiting for an elevator, please remember to allow at least a meter of space between yourself and the doors. If there are two elevators, I suggest standing between them. You are close enough to secure yourself a spot on whichever becomes available first and is headed in the right direction. 

When waiting for an elevator, do not stand directly in front of the doors. Your proximity to the doors does not make the elevator arrive sooner. When you stand directly in front of the doors, you make it impossible for the people on the elevator to exit. What's worse is that you actually hinder their exit by trying to enter the elevator as soon as the doors open wide enough for you to slip in sideways. This is always a mistake unless you are lucky enough to score an unoccupied cabin, and even then it's unnecessary. 

When waiting for an elevator, do not be stupid. If you are senseless enough to stand directly in front of the doors and try to breach the entrance as soon as possible, do not then be surprised when you run into... a person! The worst thing you can do is gasp in surprise, push your eyebrows towards your hairline,  and mutter "ohmo" in true ajumma style. This betrays your belief that this elevator exists only to serve you, to take you to your floor, and that everyone else should, well, disappear, or at the very least take the stairs. Besides, if you wait long enough, the doors will open completely and there will be plenty of room for you to enter and for me the previous occupant to exit at the same time. 

When you attempt to run me over in your hustle, you are stirring The Rage. You cannot know how hard it is for me not to scream say, "Back. Up. Off. Me". Yeah, you're so close, I need two prepositions to express myself. There is a basic principle of common courtesy that should be exercised here. It's called WAIT YOUR TURN. WAIT YOUR TURN. Just wait a few seconds longer and you won't enrage poor ChubbO who is already angry enough just being awake, who is already dreading the 40 minute fight in Metro Purgatory, who is already fed up with being stepped on, shoved, and jostled mercilessly. The ChubbO who is trying so hard to curb The Rage, to cultivate compassion, and to freaking not punch you in the face. 

In conclusion, please stop. 

This has been a public service announcement from Rage in the A.M. Management Team, whose goal is to curb the bubbling and dangerous Rage that boils within the unfortunate souls who cannot seem to adjust to being physically assaulted on a daily basis. 


  1. i don't think i could handle the ajummas and their lack of respect for personal space. i am impressed with your patience.

    and i think you win in the crappy drivers competition - boston may be a bitch, but korea just sounds, well, frightening to drive in.

  2. I am pretty patient with these old ladies being pushy. But of course there are some days when I boggled.

    Anyways thanks for checking out my blog...;)

    sure lets be pals~

  3. Funny! People often need reminders of proper elevator etiquette.

  4. This, of course applies to subway doors, too.

    And two left feet, I've lived in Boston as well as Seoul. Boston is minor league when it comes to crazy driving compared to Seoul.


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