You may not need it now, in other words, but you will, if you’re lucky. And future-you will be proud of past-you if you cared about it before it was personal.
While eating my workday lunch I was skimming this programming article on accessibility. And while I didn’t have any strong feelings about much of it, the line quoted above struck a chord. It can be taken as-is, without any context, and hold up in any spiritual court.
Not being an Xcode developer, I read inessential more for how I can include Brent’s personal wisdom in all matters. Like regardless of what I’m doing in the here and now, work or otherwise, I hope future-me will be proud.
And of course his data models and thought processes have also trickled into my development projects, too.
I hate it when I’m walking down the work hallway and I hear another office door open. Can’t I just walk down the hall alone, with peace and quiet?
Now matter how much I try to avoid people, some random body shows up and says, “hello.” And then I have to quickly scan the mental rolodex for non-offensive chit-chat. Engage in dialogue that obviously won’t last more than 15 seconds.
It’s not that I don’t like the other office building inhabitants but on a quick stroll to the restroom, there’s only so many steps to take. I’d rather walk in silence than blurt out, “How ‘bout this weather?” ..or.. “Tomorrow’s Friday!”
Of course I could pause and launch into mild outrage about (insert any poetic injustice here) but then I’d feel it socially correct to stop walking. And that in turn would invite the random body into a full blown conversation. The horror. Sure, full blown gabfests are fine but not when I’m on my way to the potty.
Maybe I should write some socially-irregular chit-chats on index cards for future use. Not ones that will have random body think I’m a boob or psycho anything because I do care what people think of me. But more like one or two-liners that will (hopefully) instill an off-balanced curiosity in the random body.
Something like these perhaps:
I had some really amazing blueberry jelly last night. So good.
With my new shoes, I’ll run faster after they’re broken in.
The Queen is kinda over-appreciated. Maybe I just don’t know her.
Peeps, here’s your youre-not-the-only-one Thursday jam. I may have posted this before but it’s still THAT good. Still as good when I bought the album a couple of years ago. The vocals remind me a little of Portishead but that’s okay. I’m totally into that whispery somber some mornings.
Described as dream-pop/indie-electro band their sound consists of dreamy electronics with melodic vocals, distant saxophones and clean reverberated guitars. Vök is easily placed in the realm of indie-electro, thus resulting in everyone from The Knife and The xx to Poliça and Phantogram, but their music is distinctly their own.
So we all know that our phones are a huge part of our lives. We take them pretty much every where. They say that they’re generally the first thing we look at in the morning and the last thing we look at before going to sleep.
However, I’ve came across a situation where another’s phone usage has me bepuzzled and I wanted to get the worldly consensus. Yes, I realize that virtually all people will be looking at this post on their phones, and yes, that may skew the results but I acknowledge this and will persist.
There’s a gentleman we’ll call Gary. I doubt if the gentleman is actually named Gary but he very well could be. If so, it’s purely coincidental. Also, this man is not your friend or relative named Gary. No, I don’t know your uncle Gary or your boss Gary. Finally, I don’t have any friends that go by Gary. Which is why I chose this name. Well, I actually chose it because after Bruce Wayne retired along came a Batman named Gary of all things. I was rather disappointed that the writers chose “Gary” because it does not compare to the power that comes from saying an almighty name such as “Bruce.” Also, if your name is Gary I’m sorry but you cannot be Batman.
Anyways, back to the man I have aliased Gary. I’ll get right to it…
Gary was watching a movie trailer in the public restroom at work a few moments ago. He was hidden within the stall but his phone did indeed bellow with the cellos and sing with the strings and pound with the pianos, and all in such a way that I knew whatever action-packed movie Gary was previewing was gonna be good. I felt a smidge frantic because I hadn’t anything but the movie music to go on. How in the world would I find this movie in Fandango later? Shazam was obviously out of the question.
But once the audible excitement of whatever film Gary was trailering had worn off, I felt disheartened, disenfranchised, disengaged, dis and more dis. Almost like I’d shared a moment with Gary that, not only I shouldn’t have, but also that I didn’t really want to. Sure, I get sucked into movie magic as much as the next Doug…but once I was washing my hands firmly back in reality, I knew beyond a doubt that I don’t want to have any kind of moments with Gary in a public restroom. Ever again.
With public restrooms I think people should get in and get out. And more importantly: let strangers get in and out as well. If you’re going to watch the YouTubes or whatever at least keep your phone on silent so you don’t suck others in. Better still, don’t make any sounds at all. Don’t grunt, gasp, or sigh. If possible, hold your breathe. Remain mysterious. Elusive. Don’t give the other guests any clues as to who you are or what you’re doing. You could very well be Bruce Wayne or Selina Kyle. Use your anonymity to your advantage!
Okay, so I’m not like everybody. I don’t like making noises or chit-chatting with strangers while visiting the communal washrooms. If you do, that’s fine. I won’t judge. To each their own. You got the right to do your business.
So my question…
Since Gary was watching and listening to his phone in the restroom, publicly filling the airwaves with theatrical music for all, would it have been appropriate for me to say, “Sounds pretty good, what movie is that?”