The Shield

Pathway etiquette

Bobby Shipman

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The daily hustle and bustle of college life sends many-a-student into a speedy craze of cruising to classes, rushing off to lunch and sprinting to the gym.

Among all of this madness, collisions are bound to occur.

I am not referring to car or bike accidents (although those can be doozies), but to the human-on-human elbow knocks and foot fumbles.

No one is innocent when it comes to these incidents but there are a few messages I have to you inane offenders.

“Get out of my way already!”

Something occurring all too often, and in the tightest of spaces, is the act of seeing a person coming your way and realizing that you are the mobile obstructer of their passage and refusing to move for some unknown reason.

The other day I was walking through Rice Library near the Starbucks lounge and three “hooligans” were headed my way.

Seeing that my only way to go around them would be to develop the ability to walk through walls I slowed down my pace.

They continued on without any observance of my dilemma, causing me to press up against the wall to avoid catastrophe.

“Wait your turn!”

Scenario: I have a glass of curdled milk. I want new milk. Do I A) empty my glass and fill it up with fresh milk or B) leave the glass full and pour the new milk on top and hope for the best.

The answer: not so obvious apparently. I don’t know how many times I have struggled to exit my classroom because the students outside are so hungry for knowledge they try to squeeze past me through the doorway.

The same goes for elevator etiquette. My mother always told me, “Wait until it’s empty then walk in.” Apparently this message is not in the Mothering Handbook.

The next time someone tries to enter an elevator before I exit: I am going to Dutch oven that scallywag.

“Say you’re sorry!”

There are a variety of ways to be a courteous college pedestrian: Hold doors open for people behind you, say “excuse me,” when cutting through a crowd/line of people, move out of the way if you are said people, look forward when walking-not at your footsies.

Nobody is perfect, and we all are guilty of breaking these rules at some point in our hectic schedules.

It is OK as long as you apologize. If you accidentally bump into someone, don’t shoot them a death stare as if they are wart from the backside of a goblin, smiley sweetly and say, “Oopsy doops, my bad.”

If we can all strive to follow these simple rules I am sure the number of angered students walking around campus will decrease significantly. I can’t say anything for those in the classroom.

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University of Southern Indiana's student publication
Pathway etiquette