Monday, June 13, 2022

ranking elevator assholes

There are certain elevator-related behaviors, especially here in Korea, that piss me off. I sometimes have a hard time deciding, though, which behaviors are worse than which others. What follows is a random list of behaviors that annoy me, but they need to be ranked. I can say right off the bat that obnoxious talking in a Korean elevator is almost never a problem. When people do talk, it's almost never in an annoying way, and I'm not in the elevator long enough to be bothered by it, so "talking" won't appear in the list below. Slap your rankings in the comments and let's compare!

1. A person gets on the elevator after you, then presses the button for a floor before your destination, thereby interrupting your elevator travel twice.

2. A person waits until the very last moment to board the elevator after the doors open. In such situations, the door is already closing when these idiots appear.

3. People impatiently enter the elevator before you have a chance to exit.

4. A person gets on the elevator after you, then presses the button for a floor after your destination, so they won't interrupt your travel further.

5. A person gets on the elevator, then forgets to press a destination button.

6. A person gets on the elevator, presses a button, then belatedly changes their destination. (Luckily, in our building's elevator, you can cancel selections.)

Know any other examples of elevator assholery? List 'em in the comments!


daeguowl said...

When an able-bodied person gets in the elevator and only goes 1-2 floors, esepcially if going down.

Kevin Kim said...

Guilty. I've been that asshole. Funny incident: one day, while teaching at Sookmyung Women's University in 2005 or 2006, I got on the elevator at the third floor and pressed "1." A woman already in the elevator muttered in Korean to a guy standing next to her about how rude it was for me to take the elevator when I was going only two floors down. I understood her complaint, of course, and as the doors opened at the first floor, I turned and said "Sorry" in Korean. The guy next to her started laughing when he saw the woman's mortified face. Bad idea to assume we're all Korean-ignorant monkeys.

Kevin Kim said...

By the way, I thought you were gonna leave a comment about the Chinese question. Charles covered everything, did he?

John Mac said...

Ah, first-world problems. We only have one building with an elevator (the Capitol Reef Hotel), and that's just six floors. I rarely go there, so I haven't had cause to get irritated by my fellow man.

Honestly, though, in the case of #1, how is that bad behavior? I mean, you are going where you're going, and I'm going where I'm going. No apology necessary.

The most egregious on your list, I think, is #3--not allowing others to exit first is classic rudeness and doesn't even make sense logistically.

We need to bring back the elevator operators to control the floor buttons and keep people in line. I guess there'd be a lot of ups and downs in that line of work, though.

Charles said...

I'm kind of with John here. In fact, I would go farther and say that only 3 is really "assholery." 5 and 6 are just people being people and making mistakes. Annoying? Yes. Assholery? Come on, man. Cut people some slack. 1 and 4 are just life--sometimes it just works out that way. Hate the game, not the player. That leaves 2, which I'm not sure about based on your wording. Do you mean that the person is standing there gormlessly until the elevator doors start to close? Or do you mean that they only arrive as the doors start to close? I'm guessing you mean the latter, and in that case I disagree. Again, that's just life, not the person being an asshole. Maybe these would all be better termed "elevator frustrations"?

My own elevator frustration (which you may have experienced when you visited us) is due to the fact that the two elevators are not connected. That is, they operate separately, and you have to press the buttons for them separately, instead of having one press activate both. This is frustrating because people end up always pressing both buttons, because they never know which elevator will arrive first. Were the elevators connected, the system could just send the closest one to you, leaving the other for someone on a different floor. All in all, it's fairly minor, but it is still frustrating.

Funnily enough, though they couldn't be arsed to install a proper elevator system, the elevator does say "오래 기다리셨습니다" if it arrives on your floor after a certain amount of time has passed. This makes me want to punch the elevator every time.

Kevin Kim said...

John & Charles,

You gents are way too nice. My perspective: when you see the same annoying behavior over and over, and you realize it's actually part of a larger cultural pattern, it ceases to be annoying and becomes assholish. When people are routinely inattentive about when an elevator door opens, for example, that means they don't have the consideration to be at the door when it opens (so as to minimize wait time for the people inside the elevator). It doesn't help that I'm often in a foul mood whenever I have to deal with random elements of the public.