There we were (my wife and your loyal scribe) on Thanksgiving Day to cast our ballots on the last day of advance voting in the federal election, and sigh, there was a 10-person line-up for our polling station. To top it off, some folks in front of us did not have their ID ready when it was their turn to get a ballot.
While line-ups are an unavoidable fact of life, the loss of precious minutes from our finite lives because of the inconsiderate and/or ignorant and/or I-have-no-clue-or-consideration whatsoever actions of those in front of us can be downright and quasi road-rage infuriating.
Sadly, line-up etiquette is neither taught as a life skill in school nor are refresher courses offered in the workplace but have no fear, the next 313 words and suggestions are hopefully helpful.
Hey mom or dad in the Timmie's line-up on a Saturday morning with 22 people behind you, please take the eight minutes while you are in line to figure out your dozen doughnuts, muffins or Timbits order with your child.
And for you, yeah you, at the front of the Starbuck's line, please put your call on hold while you get your double chai, half whip, lactose-free whatever order to your barista and not the other way around.
And heads up to folks in line at the LCBO, the grocery store or anywhere else, please have your cash/credit/debit/digital device payment method and any affinity cards ready as fumbling at the cash after standing for more than 120 seconds is simply rude and unnecessary.
Line-up etiquette is also essential for driving, especially merging. FYI, there is nothing wrong with the driver beside you entering the roadway and going to the end of the merge lane and sliding in … it's called the zipper merge and 80% of the time, it is best for traffic flow.
Where things get tricky is in food courts or at office cafeterias so the proper thing is to go with the flow – observe, follow and fit-in. If you are unsure, politely ask unless you are a male where you will try to figure it out, even if you are so wrong. Sorry ladies, it's in our DNA.
As for other places where line-up etiquette and decorum is sadly missing, think of restaurant line-ups, buffets, and airport security screening.
And in the same order, make sure someone in your party is attuned for when your table is ready, observe the buffet flow and don't be a Budinski and for the love of mother Mary and you know who ... please get rid of liquids from your carry on, remove all jewellery/metals and ensure electronic devices are ready for screening.
As for complaints about this column, the line forms to the left.