Going up?

I’m so sick of getting into elevators and having to do everything myself. What happened to elevator people? These buildings expect me to press my own buttons? It’s not cool. It’s not fair. That’s a pretty expensive piece of machinery, and I’m expected to control it all by myself?

No, we really should bring back the elevator operator. It would create so many jobs, and it would eliminate so much elevator corruption, from the ground floor up. How many times do you find yourself running for an elevator, and the doors are open, and there are people going up, and you don’t want to say something out loud, you don’t want to be like, “Wait! Hold the elevator!” you just want the people on the elevator, the people with whom you’re currently making eye contact, to help you out, to stick their hand in front of the closing doors and allow you to board.

But people are often willfully inconsiderate, of you, of your going-ups and your coming-downs. To be perfectly honest, I’ve never been in such a situation myself. I’m a really quick guy, and so if I ever find myself in the unlikely scenario where I’m chasing down an elevator with the doors closing, I just kind of kick it into high gear, bust ass and make sure I get my hand in there. It always works.

I don’t know why I’m not scared of the closing doors. It’s like I automatically take for granted that each elevator I find is always going to come equipped with that sensor, something to detect my hand and stop the doors from closing all the way. But what if it was broken? What if it ignored my hand and just closed shut, tight, like a vise, and then it started going up, my hand getting pulled toward the ceiling?

No, that’s too much to think about. I’m cringing already. But it’s like the same with the subway doors. If I’m catching a train and the doors are closing, I’ll do the same hand trick. It’s a little different, because those doors actually will close on your hand. It doesn’t hurt though, there’s some sort of a rubber layer that prevents it from really clamping down too hard. And then there must be some sort of a separate mechanism that detects your hand in the crack, and the doors briefly open up again, allowing you to slip inside.

And then the conductor gets on the loudspeaker and she’s like, “Will you please not hold the doors open? You’re making everybody late!” and then just as the doors are about to close again, somebody else runs up to catch the train and does the same hand trick, and now the conductor is even madder, she’s like, “One more time! Just try and hold those doors open one more time!”

But back on the elevator, I’m running, the people don’t think I’m going to make it, I do, I’m on the elevator, and so now they’re acting all contrite, or it’s really uncomfortable and so they’re not really acting like anything, they just have their heads down. As a punishment I press every single button on the elevator. You try to make me wait? I’m going to make sure you have to wait. Obviously this only works if everybody else is going to a higher floor than me. If I’m going to nine, and everybody else is getting off at three, yeah, I’ll still press two, just to kind of piss everybody off a little, but it lacks that bite, that having to stop at two, three, four, five, all the way to fifteen. And so if this is the case, I just hold down the emergency bell button. It doesn’t do anything, like no emergency crews ever respond. But it’s loud. And go ahead and try to tell me to stop. You really want to start something after trying to keep me out this elevator?

No, all of this is childish, completely unnecessary, including me, including my behavior. Which is why we need an elevator guy. He’d see me coming, we’d make eye contact, he’d kind of nod and he’d hold the door open. “Thanks Jerry,” I’d say upon entering, obviously I’d be on a first name basis with him, he on a Mr. then last name basis with me. And even if it weren’t my regular elevator guy, I’d say something informal, a “Thanks boss,” something.

Let’s do it. I’ll get the ball rolling. I’ll be the elevator guy. Think of all the power. I’d see how badly people would want me to not hold the door for stragglers, they’d kind of look at me, silently urging me to just close the doors, to make a second trip, and so I’d see that, and I’d turn the tables. I’d ask that person to leave, make that person wait for a second trip. They’d be like, “Who the hell do you think you are?” and I’d respond, “I’m the elevator guy. You want to go up? Huh? Well I hope you brought a comfortable pair of sneakers,” and then I’d point to the stairs.

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