You’re never alone when standing in line

You're never alone when standing in line By Bob Karolevitz Standing in line is as American as apple pie or hot dogs.

No wonder in-line dancing and Conga lines were so popular.

We stand in ticket lines for movies, concerts and football games. We queue up at checkout counters where we wait and wait and wait. Even in the Express Lane there's always somebody ahead of us with their 10-items-or-less.

In the fast-food outlets, they organize their lines with zig-zag mazes. And soup kitchens sometimes try our patience until we get to the chili or noodles. (While we're waiting in line, somebody else always takes the piece of pie we've had our eye on.)

At the post office we line up to buy stamps or mail a package. The line is always especially long at Christmas time or when you're in a hurry.

A lot of us got our dalliance training in the military service. The hurry-up-and-wait routine became a way of life for us. (I guess as we cooled our heels that's where we developed a long-standing dislike for the "crashers" who try to sneak in ahead of us.)

Come to think of it, we must be a docile lot as we stand in an uncomplaining row to pay our taxes at the courthouse. We also line up to vote. It's so ingrained that we do it like we were led there by the Pied Piper.

These days you practically have to line up to tee off at the golf course; and I understand that skiers have to wait their turn to go down the slope � or to break a leg.

I'm not going back to Disneyland because last time we spent most of the day there inching along to the various attractions. I should have brought along a book to read. Or, instead of muttering uncomplimentary remarks, I could have said a rosary or two and gained a little spiritual credit.

If we all got a dollar for every minute we've stood in line, we could pay off the national debt and still have money left over to stand in some other line with.

Through the years I've learned the in-line shuffle, moving your feet forward a few inches as you ease towards your goal, be it an autograph, an ice cream cone or a free anything.

Even in our automobiles we've had to line up like ducks in a row at the car wash or for a parking space.

I suppose we should consider it all as preparation for Judgement Day. There'll probably be a lineup at the Pearly Gates while Saint Peter checks our credentials. With all those people waiting to get in, it stands to reason that a line will be necessary. And no doubt we'll have to stand one behind the other as the Cherubim and Seraphim issue us our harps.

By then, though we'll have the whole eternity to wait, which it just seems like now at the post office window.

Somebody once said that if you think that the world is moving too fast, you should just find a bank or supermarket line to stand in. That'll slow it up for you.

Yes, sometimes I think we're just a nation of dominoes in a line of our own making. Maybe we should jump the traces once in a while, but then we'd probably be standing, lonely like, all by ourselves.

© 2000 Robert F. Karolevitz

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