Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Handling Queue-Jumpers


Last weekend, I attended a community event. At the event, each attendee was entitled to a complimentary serving of food.

Naturally, it being dinner time, there was a long queue for the food. While my friend and I were waiting in line, an ageing buxom lady (who I shall call Mrs Buxom India) and her slimmer friend appeared in front of us and started having a chat.

After a while, my friend and I realised that they were not there to simply chat. They had, in fact, queue-jumped.

I confronted the two ladies. I asked, "Excuse me, are you here to just chat or to collect your meal?"

Mrs Buxom India replied that they were waiting in line to collect their food. As much as I appreciated her shameless honesty, I had to tick her off. I said pointing to the end of the line behind me, "Then, we were here before you and the line actually begins over there."

By that time, Mrs Buxom India's slimmer friend had disappeared to join the end of the queue. Mrs Buxom India insisted, "Well, if you need to go first, you can go before me."

I shot back, "It's not a question of just me going first. It's a question of all those before you going first."

Mrs Buxom India then left the line.

I am reminded of a similar event I went through as a university student. Some years ago, after leaving a disco, I was waiting for a taxi. Someone appeared in front of me and tried to flag a cab. As he was about to get into the taxi, I went up to him and said, "Excuse me, I think your friend over there is looking for you and calling out your name."

As he sought to look for the friend apparently calling him, I got into the cab and told the driver to head to the destination I wanted to.

We should not condone queue-jumping. Of course, if one is elderly, pregnant, handicapped or needy in any other manner, an exception can be made to help them.

We should not hesitate to stand up for what is the right thing to do.

Dharmendra Yadav

Please consider the environment - do you really need to print this?

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