Escalator Etiquette

Escalator Etiquette
by Gurldurham

When I first started doing stand-up – okay let me re-phrase that because it makes it sound like stand-up is a thing I do when it's more a thing I did a couple of times and now just use as a cool ice breaker at parties and sometimes as a Fun Fact About Me in job interviews to make myself seem quirky and fearless. 

Which I am.

Or was.

A couple of times.

Last year. 
Anyway - the first time I did stand up I wrote this hilarious bit about trying to get to work on time in a city where a hundred thousand other people were also trying to get to work on time. Pure gold, right? I know.

I was like: “Hey guys, you know how you know you're on time for work? When you don't have to walk up the escalator.”


Know what I'm talking about?

When you can just prop one hand on the railing and the other on your cocked hip, smugly watching the schmucks marching up the left side of the escalator as you slowly glide up the right side, thinking to yourself, “Well, well, well maybe some of you should have made those bad decisions a little earlier in the evening and gotten yourself a good night's sleep and then maybe it could be you posing like a stock photo of a High Powered Business Woman right now.” 


“What…you guys don’t get it?”

The crowd of 20-something dog-walkers stared blankly at me.

Oh, well excuse the fuck out of me. I’m sure I know why you don't get it. 

Because you wake up around 11:30 in the morning, pad barefoot into the dirty kitchen of your Logan Square 3 flat that you share with 6 other dog-walkers, make yourself a cup of hot tea because you're A WALKING HIPSTER STEREOTYPE OF EVERYTHING HIPSTERS HATE, then you go play your ukulele for about an hour, you twee son of a bitch, remind yourself to add kale and quinoa to your shopping list full of Trendy Superfoods That Actually Taste Like Actual Dirt that your investment banker daddy still pays for, and then you go change into a T-shirt that says “Male Feminist” and google some edgy bondage porn because Vanilla is Just So Vanilla, and, hey man, you've thought about it, and you’re willing to acknowledge that pornography is problematic and maybe you're a bit of a hypocrite because you still watch it, but you know what you also Respect Her Choices and something something something about “agency” and “autonomy” and “intersectional" too, while you're at it, and as long as you keep tossing out these co-opted buzzwords to Zombie Tumblr Feminists you’ll keep getting Progressive Brownie Points and therefore your analysis of pornography need go no deeper because critically thinking about why these beautiful women "consented" to is a Total Boner Killer Anyway. Then you just go have yourself a dirty-sock orgasm and fall asleep til about 2:30 in the afternoon so OF COURSE any references to the Trials and Tribulations of getting to work on time in the morning are LOST ON YOU, you Kept Bums. 

At this point the silence is hostile.

They are not at all appreciating my So-On-Point analysis of their moral compasses, nor my 7 year dated references to the award-winning motion picture Inception as part of my So-On-Point description of the way Chicago seems to like, fold and bend in on itself in just such a way that makes every place in the city exactly 1-minute-past-8’o’clock-far-away from my job.
They’re glaring at me. Without irony.
“Well, y’all'd be the type to just stand like assholes on the left side of the escalator, anyway."
But they didn't get it because of course they didn't get it because when you're never in a hurry, when no one is depending on you to Be There by 8am to get your day of passive aggressively cc'ing upper management on every griping email you send out because the recipient Didn’t Even Fucking Respond to What You Actually Said, Goddammit, it will have never even OCCURRED to you that the LEFT side of the escalator is for those of us who maybe made some well thought-out, carefully considered decisions a little later in the evening than usual and didn't get much sleep last night so now have a little hustle in our morning bustle so we can't just obliviously lounge with our quinoa lattes in one hand and some Gold Coast Madam's purebred Shneiderhouser leash in the other and THE JOKE WILL BE LOST ON YOU.

So, my bit about traversing Chicago from 7-8am was every bit as funny as Paula Poundstone ever was, and it was not my fault that they just didn’t even get the jokes because Jesus Christ, Real Life Much? And it also isn’t my fault that Ellen Page has strategically placed assholes on the left side of the escalator as part of her immaculate mind-fuck of a Chicago simulacrum with the sole intent of making every point in this city exactly 1-minute-past-8-o’clock-far-away from my job so that Cillian Murphy can Dissolve His Father's Company SO FUCKING MOVE, YOU OBLIVIOUS SHITHEADS. |
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