Sunday, September 04, 2005

Who wrote these rules?

Watching all of the craziness and chaos going on in the south right now, it's almost impossible to imagine oneself amidst such a complete disintegration of civility and humanity. Now, don't get me wrong...I don't consider myself to live a genteel existence. I push my way to the front of a crowd, roll my eyes when someone asks for a "small" at Starbucks (ugh) and am annoyed when confronted with loud, young children in restaurants, bookstores, shopping malls, sidewalks....in general, any place where I am consumed with my own life details.
That being said, there are several rules that I find Torontonians live by. Rules that not only allow us to demonstrate some "urban-gentlemanliness" but also allow us to live our busy lives at the highest level of busyness possible. Here are a smattering of rules that I enjoy.

Stand right, walk left.
  • most certainly one of the most common rules recognized daily and en masse. also an excellent way to differentiate your fellow urbanites from your tourists.

No talking on the subway.

  • my friend pennington learned this one the hard way when he was severely shushed by me during a morning commute. i find this rule to be most commonly ignored by students, old chinese ladies and young eastern european ladies. i also feel the most intense hatred for violators of this rule, particularly on weekday mornings.

Make way for those exiting the car.

  • another subway rule. and another one that inspires hatred and violence. people who stand in front of the subway door, or push to get on while there is a crowd pushing to get off...these people need to die horrible deaths. possibly a punch to the neck, a knife in the eye or even a swift push onto the tracks.

Internet dating is a standard way of life.

  • now this is most certainly a personal one. mostly because i've met the love of my life through this handy little gem. suburbanites or people who live outside this city don't understand the hell that dating can be here. just because i'm crushed into a city of 4.5 million does not mean that i speak to more than 10, hell 5 of them. and the fact that internet dating has evolved passed the axe murderer taking out a personals ad in the local daily does not occur to them.

Dealing with beggars, leaflet distributors, whores and dealers.

  • don't get me wrong, i fully support that this group is among the the lower caste of our society (leaving room for Rogers employees, Collection agencies and Scientologists), however they must be dealt with humanely and swiftly. there is a formula that must be followed in an interaction/altercation with any of these folks.
  • Step 1: do not make eye contact until confirming that some type of interaction is being initiated on their part.
  • Step 2: look them in the eye. if you're unsure of where the eye socket is due to dirt, hair, scar tissue, kohl liner or blackened flesh...simply look towards the highest point of the body.
  • Step 3: politely, firmly and audibly say "No, thank you" or "Sorry, no" or "Thanks but I've got all the crack I need right now".
  • Step 4: move swiftly beyond the interaction without any hesitation, without looking and without wondering if that crack addict really was looking to buy a coffee.
  • Step 5: under no circumstances suggest that the instigator go get a job, go fuck themselves and/or propose some type of physical violence (unless it's the god-lover at dundas square)

That's my rules for now, I know that I'm missing many but I hope that this will be a good intro to gentlemanly/gentlewomanly living.

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