Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Valley Of Empty Staircases

What do you think would happen if, for one day, we turned off all the escalators in the City? I know what would happen. People would go into a frenzy and immediately stampede to the nearest elevator. They would REFUSE to take a step near the lonely staircase,who would then feel depressed and have to contemplate what it ever did to become so unpopular.

Working in the city, commuting, being in places that are publicly used, moving up and down, above and below ground, there are 3 ways in getting where you need to be. The elevator, the escalator, and the lowly staircase.

I got to thinking about this the past few weeks, while watching 7,000 people mush themselves onto a crowded escalator, when all the while there was a mere 1-2 people brave enough to venture up and down the staircase. Why be so lazy? When you think about it, most of us commuting at 8ish in the morning and later 5ish at night sit the majority of the day away. Shouldn't we take advantage of the space between to move around some?

I'm a staircase kind of girl unless I am carrying obscene amounts of bags (which happens often because I'm a vagabond) or am miserably hungover. I feel though, in cases that you need to ride the escalator should use it as a tool to move faster, not to take a break. I hate HATE when you are stuck on a 1 laned escalator and people just stand around, basking and enjoying their ride. That's whats great about 2 laned escalators. The lazies or those who have two much luggage to pass can stay to the right and us fast-movers have the ability to zip on by. BUT THEN you got to love the couples who need to stand next to each other to "escalator spoon" or tourists who don't understand NYC commuting etiquette and take up both lanes, leaving us "I need to be running or else I'm angry" commuters pouting and shaking our fists in rage.

I fear technology. I fear it's ability to create a world where we don't need to move or think to get through the day. Whats next for our future NYC? Side walks who ask were your going and then slide you to your chosen destination? Body-robot doubles who live the entire day for you and then tell you all about it at night?

I'd rather take the stairs.

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