Line Up

Boyleing Points
Typography

When you travel, you learn that people actually do like to wait on lines. Not all people, but by the looks of things, most.

I’ll never get the hipster thing about getting on a line for a taco or a kale sandwich in Rockaway when you could get the same thing with no line in Brooklyn. But what do you do when you travel?  What do you do if you hate friggin’ lines and you fly halfway around the world to see some stuff?  You’ve gotta see the inside of that amazing piece of architecture or you’ve gotta have a meal at a place that is world famous. Ya know, part of the reason you made the trek in the first place.

You don’t want to be a Debbie Downer (sorry to the happy Debbies everywhere!) but you arrive in a weakened state. The last thing you want is another line.

You’ve already been put through the airport ringer. The security line is just a crush of tense, simmering, frustrated folk hoping they’re not the ones picked for the body search. You get through the metal detector without setting off alarms, but your shoes are stuck in the x-ray machine. The guy in front of you had a tube of moisturizer and now the TSA agent is all Dick Tracy on the guy, checking every item in his shaving kit. My shoes are full of radiation by now. 

I feel for the moisturizer guy because you know he can’t even roll his eyes or he’ll be sent to a private room. Finally, Dick Tracy allows the guy to move on. I put on my shoes wondering if I’m slipping into a couple of carcinogens.

We worry about a flight delay but we win the lottery and the flight takes off on time.

We land, all good. But then we’re sent to a long line to have our passports checked. I don’t like the way the humorless guy looks at my passport picture then at me. I’m smart enough not to mutter my curse word until I’m a few feet out of his view. You can probably guess which one I used. That might be another column, what’s your go-to curse word? I know, depends on the situation. Well, what about this one? Begins with an “a”?

Now we wait for luggage. Then we wait for a cab.

We get to our place but we’ve to wait a little to check in. We hear the best chocolate churro in the world is sold at a place just a couple of blocks away. Let’s go.

There’s a line around the corner. You’ve flown half way around the world to get on a line? And that’s the big dilemma. If you don’t wait on that line and you don’t have the taste of a lifetime, was it worth the halfway around the world trip? Is it worth seeing the Sistine Chapel from the outside? Or The Louvre? Do you kill half the trip on a line?

I think people who like lines are nuts but maybe they’re on to something.

I saw a friend on a long line at the Post Office and he was smiling. When I asked what the hell was wrong with him, he said he was traveling vicariously. “I just tell myself this is the line for Space Mountain.”

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