Thursday, 26 March 2009

When the Revolution Comes...

The carriage was empty. It was divided into groups of six seats, four seats and two seats. I made my way to a group of six and sat by the window, stretching out my legs and emitting a deep relaxing sigh.

A man got on and made a beeline for the seat opposite me, completely ignoring the millions of vacant seating areas, plonking himself down with the air of a gimp grandchild who has no understanding of personal space.

I shifted to the next seat along and glared at him. He squirmed uncomfortably.

A few more people came into the carriage. Another man joined our area, pulled a little laptop out of his bag and proceeded to type away. My adversary watched him intently, studying his laptop, apparently examining everything he typed.

The man looked up from his laptop, clearly irritated, and glared back. Our adversary squirmed once again and looked away.

I took out my book and began to read. This incognizant hooligan sat there scrutinising the cover of my book. I put my book down impatiently and glared at him. He squirmed like a worm and looked out the window. I took out my phone to check for blog posts. He studied it intently. Once again I glared at him. He noticeably quailed.

We reached my stop. I stood up, gave him a killer of a glare and left. I didn't feel the need to say anything, my glare was an open book, written against him and his kind. The man with the laptop caught my eye as I walked past, we shared a moment of collective frustration.

Where do these people come from? Protocol Violators I call them. I once saw a Protocol Violator watching a fellow passenger do a Sudoku puzzle, it was the most heinous violation of intellectual privacy I have ever witnessed.

When the revolution comes the Protocol Violators will be the first up against the wall.

37 comments:

Kylie w Warszawie said...

I love all things that start with "when the revolution comes..."

It's my mantra.

I can only equate this to being at the gym and having all the other machines unoccupied and someone deciding that they NEED to use the machine next to me.

Sass said...

I so agree with Kylie on that comment.

This post makes me think of being stuck at the salon last night, watching my daughter get her hair cut. These two kids decided the best thing they could do would be to eat very chewy, noisy candy with their mouths open right next to me.

Ugh.

Cora said...

Despicable. Just despicable.

Diane said...

Protocol Violators. Love it!

OK, 1) Do not read over Mo's shoulder on the train.
2) Do not sit in the seat opposite Mo if there are many others vacant.

Awaiting #3...

Maria Roth said...

You seriously ATTRACT these people, don't you?! I don't ever deal with this. I think you must look like a "nice" guy; otherwise, these freaks would leave you alone. (Does that mean I DON'T look "nice"? On the contrary, I have strangers ask me for help in the grocery store all the time. And, no, I don't work at the grocery store.)

Call Me Cate said...

Ugh. I do NOT get these people. I don't regularly use mass transit (it's just not available in my area) but even *I* know these things are not acceptable.

I bet you've got a wicked glare. Hopefully he learns to never do these things again.

blognut said...

I am stealing the term 'Protocol Violators' and I plan to begin using it immediately. Wait! Is that copyrighted? Do I need to say your name everytime I use the phrase?

Crap. What's the protocol here?

Nikki-ann said...

I get irritated quite easily... which is why I always seem to get the most irritating people come and sit next to me! Argh! :D

Nikki said...

The people who try to help me finish my crossword puzzle have turned up missing in some states. I haven't been caught yet but I think it has something to do with the police agreeing with me. I'm like the Protocol Violator Vigilante.

Soda and Candy said...

I love giving people the glaring of a lifetime.

Mary@Holy Mackerel said...

Yes, protocol violators. Bane of my existence. I'm very good at glaring.

Gwen said...

Mkaing people noticably quail is a truly rewarding art.

Minka said...

One would expect you to become immune to these things... when will you?

There will always be people like that.

My guess is you enjoy finding new answers to situations like this and protocol violators sense that - like dogs can smell human fear, that sort of thing, you know... Yep, that will be it.

g said...

Funny. And how true. Yesterday I dropped off my car for smogging and went to a coffee shop for lunch while I waited. I sat at the counter. Some guy came and sat RIGHT NEXT to me, even tho there were other stools. And he kept putting his elbow in my space while he ate his food. Arrrgggh!

Stacie said...

Here's what I think you should do.

Carry an extra paper around with you...and the next time some nosey ass wants to look at your stuff, you hand them a paper, but never say a word. :D

IT could be a day old paper, or maybe even a week old, that would be nice of you. :)

Anna Russell said...

Oh man, I hate these people too. Protocol Violators is an excellent name for them. And way more polite than what I call them.

Sassy Britches said...

Ugh. People do that to me at teh park all the time when I'm eating lunch. Hellooooo, 10 acres here; spread your butt OUT!

And, sometimes I'm a Protocol Violator when people are taking notes or reading something. But only for a few seconds so as not to get caught. And I think that if I got caught, I wouldn't REPEATEDLY continue to do it like that schlub in the carriage. He must have a messed up learning curve.

Snarky A. said...

This is the same thing in the movie theater when someone comes and sits down right next too you, without leaving a "mercy seat" in between. Hate it.

Tooj said...

What about those that violate without being caught??? Are they still as heinous? I would think so...but I had to ask. I'm glad I don't have to deal with public transportation. I'd scream. Literally. Every single day.

Captain Dumbass said...

Shooting people is fun and all, but I think bringing back the guillotine is more cost effective and sends a stronger message.

Comedy Goddess said...

I blame his mother.

Slyde said...

oooh, i HATE when people try to pull that shit on me. I will usually just put my book down and stare them down until they see what im doing ...

jpooh said...

And here I always thought it would be the lawyers first against the wall...

I suppose we could do the Protocol Violators first - but let's make the lawyers watch so they can see what's coming.

Viva La Revolution!

Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

"...when the revolution comes..."

LOL

"...Protocol Violators..."

ROFLMAO love it

C.B. Jones said...

They are the people who looked over on other peoples papers in class, and still failed even if you turned it to an angel where they could see the answers better.

In other words, those mental midgets cheated off the wrong people when they were younger.

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

We drive 30 minutes to get to a huge expanse of mostly private beach. People set up for their day with at least 20 yards between them and the nearest. Every once in awhile a group of tourists will discover our secret beach, walk down from the path, and set up within spitting distance. I just let border collie pee on their beach chairs.

The Mister said...

Is that just a phrase from The Guide or is it common on the street in the UK?

mo.stoneskin said...

Straight out of The Guide!

lizspin said...

We affectionately call them "cousins" when they plop themselves next to us when the rest of the beach is wide open!

Kat said...

Train protocol violators are almost as bad as toilet protocol violators.

San Diego Momma said...

I am a Protocol Violator. I admit it.

But I do it in a sneaky, they-don't-know-I'm-watching-them way, so hopefully I will be excused?

cactus petunia said...

When I lived in NY, Protocol Violators were dealt with severely...they attracted the attention of the Crazy Lunatics Who Make Eye Contact.

I kinda miss 'em.

Nej said...

@ Kat - toilet protocol voilators? Dare I ask??

My hubby is an asker. If he sees someone with an interesting book, phone, whatever...he goes over and talks to them about it. Asks questions.

At the airport, he went us to a guy with a backpack I liked. By the time they were done talking, the gentlemen gave it to him to try on. :-)

The Girl Next Door said...

Is it a Protocol Violation if I steal Your Term Protocol Violator? Because the annoying middle people on the plane who elbow me? Yeah. PVs all the way.

kari and kijsa said...

Protocol Violators!! Love it- our new favorite phrase!!(especially over a good Sudoku-kijsa is addicted and would never want to be violated while solving one!-serious offense!!))
blessings,
kari & kijsa

Candy's daily Dandy said...

Some people just don't get "it", like all of the personal space violators out there. This guy was obviously a repeat offender.

Peggy said...

I can't stand socially inept people...and, unfortunately my MIL is one of them! UGH!

I wish I could write a bit about her (to vent) but I can't do it to my husband.

As I have quite a few new readers since I became a "Jelly Biter" I've put this up here again. To understand the context you must read this post!