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What’s bothering me today?

December 13, 2007

***Update at the end of the post*** 

Glad you asked. Today, it’s all the non-handicapped people who use the “auto-open” button on the bathroom door in our building. It has the wheelchair/handicapped symbol on it for a reason. At first I generously and naively assumed people were using it because they did not want to touch the door handles, which are notorious harbingers of germs, especially at this time of year. But I don’t think that’s the case, and here’s why:

  1. So many people use it that the button has to be just as germ-y as the door handle
  2. I’ve seen many people use the restroom, not wash their hands, then hit the button.

Clearly they are not concerned about germs, they are just lazy. Have we really gotten to the point where even opening a door is too much work? Some will say people do it for convenience, but how hard is it to open a door? Maybe if you had your hands full, but who goes to the bathroom carrying all their worldly possessions? I’ve seen ads for minivans that have an auto open/close function on the sliding door. This makes sense if you are a parent with a litter of children, or you are carrying a bunch of groceries or something. But odds are, you have a free hand to open a door when you are going to the john.

I was trying to think of why this bothers me so much more than people who use automatic doors in other places (grocery stores, etc). I think it’s because those are the default doors. You have to actively seek out and press the button in the bathroom to open the door. It is not the default mode of door operation. This is one of those little things that bothers me because I read a lot (maybe too far) into it and see how lazy our society has become.

Stupid lazy Americans. If you are physically able to open the door, do it yourself.

***UPDATE: I was looking for this clip when I first wrote the post, but couldn’t find it. But finally, here it is:

4 Comments leave one →
  1. marino permalink
    December 13, 2007 11:46 am

    i completely agree. i’m sure there is some sort of fact related to this on the internets some where, but i bet the aggregate energy waste associated with lazy fuckers using those automatic door opening buttons when they dont need to is staggering.

  2. Ashley permalink
    December 13, 2007 4:24 pm

    Same thing goes for the people movers at the airport. I just looooove the people that step onto those things and then just stand there. Isn’t the point to get you from point A to point B faster?

    Or how about these backpacks ON WHEELS. Do people realize that the weight of the wheels and retractable handle only adds weight to it? These things are everywhere! If I had one of these in high school or even college, I would have probably gotten my ass beat. Unless you are carrying an anvil in your backpack, I’m pretty sure whatever you fit in there you are capable of towing on your back.

    Futhermore, it’s not really “SPECIAL Assistance” if EVERYONE needs it. Have you noticed that as soon as people step into an airport they completely lose the ability to walk or even stand for that matter? Being one of those assistants whose sole job is to push people around in a wheelchair or drive the car down the terminal must be the worst job (next to a being a bus driver of course). But really these people are smarter than you think… they don’t have to wait in line at ticketing or security, and they get to pre-board without question. They get first dibs at overhead luggage space leaving everyone else to fight amongst themselves. Lately, when an airplane offers pre-board to “anyone who may need a little extra time to get down the jet way” you better believe I take them up on that. It’s not like they are going to question me… I’ve done this about a half a dozen times without incident.

    Just as guilty as everyone else? Maybe. Blame it on my passion for traveling.

  3. andy permalink*
    December 14, 2007 10:04 am

    I ride the elevator at work from the 1st to the 2nd floor. I actually do this because I have to walk quite a ways out of the way to get to the stairs, and it’s quicker to ride – but there’s also an ancillary purpose: sometimes I can hear people muttering when I get off the elevator, and I LOVE when they do that, because I love the idea that they want to say something to me and won’t do it in my face, but wait until I’m walking away to grumble. People are awesome.

    Also, germs are everywhere. If you think that by being careful in the bathroom or always washing your hands that you are germ-free, you are an idiot. I don’t always wash my hands. I also don’t always piss on them either. I would contend that I live a rather germ plagued life. The last time I was sick? Last February. Some people are just sickly and get sick all the time. Some don’t.

    Another big pet peeve of mine is people who are grossly offended when someone doesn’t cover their mouth when they cough. “UGH! Cover your mouth I don’t want your germs.” Guess what homie, you already have them. Covering your mouth to cough is a pleasantry, not a scientific solution. It’s about as effective as showering to get rid of AIDS.

  4. December 14, 2007 1:55 pm

    Usually I just glare at people that use elevators to go up or down one floor.

    In my building however, you need a special access card to get out of the stairwells into the floors. So most people have to take the elevators, even if they would prefer to just walk down the one flight of stairs to get to their meeting at the floor below.

    Of course it took me three months to figure that out so I was glaring at people whose actions did not warrant a glare. Whoops.

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