Is it just me or has anyone else noticed that when you are waiting in line, particularly at a government office or on some service, you will always meet someone who is incredibly chatty and is just waiting to give you their entire life story? By the way, this is without any prompting from you.
What is it about lines that encourage people to talk to you at random about their personal life and share down to the last unpleasant detail? Or give you a running commentary on that time they did a colonoscopy. To make things worse, If they are not sharing, they think because you are in the queue, they have the right to know your medical history or just why you are there in the first place. Is it that in some strange way this camaraderie alleviates the boredom of waiting and I didn’t get the memo?
As soon as you hear, “So what you came to do today,” or the random comment directed to no one in particular, be on your guard. If you give the slightest of nods, or your expression moves from dead-pan to familiar, a barrage of comments is sure to follow. You don’t ever have to respond, the fact that you are within earshot is enough. The speaker knows there is nowhere for you to go until you are called and so you become the unwilling audience. You now have a ‘friend’, who asks you to watch her belongings while she uses the bathroom and listen out for her name as she goes to the cafeteria.
You are now locked in and share a bond for life. Because how long will you read the same page of your novel without being interrupted? So you respond with a slight nod of the head or a soft hmm. If the wait time is beyond an hour, they might want to look at the jacket cover of your novel or better yet show you pics of their family or their pet. And just when it looks like you are about to exchange numbers, you jump up and say, ‘That’s me’ a little louder than you should because you hear your name and it is the sweetest sound you have ever heard.
I know I am not the only one who has had to endure unsolicited sharing. There’s no way I am the only one.
Tell me in the comment box below, what has been your experience while waiting in line?