2005.05.31 Holding the Handrail
Some people are total klutzes. I can descend stairs without a problem. I can take the stairs two at a time if I choose. I can take them one a time fairly quickly without a problem. But some people just can't do that. Let me introduce something to you with which you might not be familiar. It's called a handrail.
If you're clumsy enough that there is a decent possibility of you taking a spill at all, there isn't any shame in reaching out for the handrail to walk. Stick out that hand, and take it easy. Don't let the rest of us rush you, or make you feel uncomfortable. We can tell by the way that you're walking that you're one of those special handrail people.
Handrail people walk down stairs in a funny way. It seems that their eyes are fixed on the stairs as if one of them were going to adjust their height out of nowhere. In case you never noticed, most stairs have about the same proportions. If they're a certain height, they're also a certain depth. If you've got a couple stairs already passed by, the rest of them shouldn't really adjust themselves. They're all going to be the same. Stop staring at them, please. You're holding onto that handrail as if your life depended on it. In some cases I know that it can, but for the most part, I think it's that fear of the moving stairs. Since the stairs don't move or adjust themselves, please don't mind us as we laugh at you.
Some of the following things you might find also don't self-adjust:
- The height of the curb
- The middle hole on the three hole punch
- Elevator buttons - you already pushed it once, that's good enough
- Community fridge temperatures
Again, I don't mind that you use the handrail. If it'll save you from taking a nasty spill down the stairs and subjecting yourself to potential further work absences - that's fine by me. I'd prefer not to have a guilty conscience as I laugh at you as you do your humpty-dumpty impersonation down the stairs. If you could stop doing that "I'm staring really hard at the stairs because I'm afraid that they're going to move" stare, it sure would make it a lot easier for us not to stare at you.
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