Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Stupid Elevator People

The following ten people are the ones that elevator riders at the Harris County Criminal Justice Center deal with everyday -- much to their chagrin:

10. The "Going Up?" Guy-this is the person who clearly never learned how to read the basic signs of up and down. There are two bulbs on the side of every elevator, dude. If the top one is lit up, that means the elevator is going up. If the bottom one is lit, it's going down. Please don't step on the elevator, hold the door open, and then poll the other occupants as to whether the elevator is going up or down. If you were dumb enough to get on the elevator without looking, just enjoy the ride (up or down).

9. The Klingon Solo Talker -I love technology, but I've yet to jump on the Bluetooth Device phenomenon. The Klingon Solo Talker is the guy (yes, Kevin Howard and Don Hecker, I'm talking about you) who has the futuristic device in his ear and proceeds to have a one sided conversation in the elevator that nobody else wants to hear. Yes yes. We know you have a cell phone. And yes, we realize you are very important. Seriously, finish your damn conversation before you get on the elevator.

8. The "Yes, I know 14 people are waiting, but I'm more important" Attorney-This is the attorney who prevents the door to the elevator from closing while he finishes off a conversation with a cohort, despite the fact that the other people on the elevator would gladly strangle him just to get back to the first floor.

7. The Blockader-we all hate crowded elevators, but this is (usually a female) who will defiantly stand their ground at the front of the elevator, even though there is more room to back up and allow more people on. Their hope is to create a mirage indicating a full elevator, which will, in turn, discourage more people from joining them on the ride. Save the illusions for Vegas, kiddo.

6. The Buddy System Guy-this is the guy (admittedly, usually a prosecutor), that sees his friend coming down the hallway, and, realizing that the elevators come by at a painfully slow rate, holds the door open for his friend, no matter how far away he is. While everyone else on the elevator is tapping their feet impatiently, this guy is doing his buddy a solid. NOTE: The Buddy System Guy is also known as the "Hot Girl Approaching" guy, in the event that a pretty girl needs the elevator held for her. (Yes, I'm talking to you, Mayr.) The pretty girl will appreciate your chivalry. Your fellow elevator riders will want to beat you to death with their file folders.

5. The Recon Guy-this is the guy or gal who isn't really sure what floor they are supposed to get off on to arrive at their court. Rather than get off the elevator and consult the directory posted at every elevator bank, they find it much more practical to hold the door open with one hand while they swing their body out into the hallway to scan around for an indication that they are on the correct floor. This is especially awesome when they are about six floors away from their destination, and repeat this process on every floor in between.

4. The "Say, Are you a Lawyer?" Person-on a less crowded day, any male that gets on a relatively empty car while wearing a tie will get hit up by a defendant who automatically assumes the equation that "Tie = Lawyer", and what better time to get a little free legal advice then when you are trapped on an elevator with somebody?

3. The 351st Floor Folks-these are the idiots who bypass the directory in the lobby under the mistaken assumption that each Court is placed on it's corresponding numerical floor (i.e., Court Three is on the third floor, Court Five is on the fifth, the 351st is on the . . . well, you get the point). Every day, there is a group of befuddled defendants on the fourth floor (which is where the D.A.'s Office is located), asking where Court Four is. You would think that these Real Men of Genius would take note of the fact that the building is generally only twenty stories high, and figure it out from there.

2. The "F--- the Police" Guy-nothing helps relieve a bad day in court for an angry defendant than getting on the elevator and talking about how screwed he got. He throws out terms like "punk ass prosecutor" and "my stupid ass attorney" quite freely as he talks about how the police set him up. Seriously man. We're elevator riders -- not your jury. Give it a rest.

1. The Physics Defiant-oh yeah, we all know this guy. It doesn't matter if the elevator has 73 people on it, dammit, this guy is going to squeeze on. Usually, his butt will cause the safety mechanism on the door to keep from closing, because it sticks out too far. But that doesn't mean he won't give it the Old College Try! While the rest of the elevator patrons are getting to know each other in ways they never hoped to, this guy is hoping against hope that he can defy the Laws of Physics and fit on. Usually after the door fails to close after about three tries, he will reluctantly step off the elevator -- under the hateful glares of everyone else.

I'm sure I'm missing some other categories. Y'all help me out here.

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

By Tarian:

Hilarious list. But you left out one of the absolute worst offenders: Mr. "I-Don't-Need-My-Monthly-Shower-I'm-Only-Going-To-Court," who gets on a crowded elevator right after you and stands approximately 3/10 of an inch from your nostrils, emitting an overwhelmingly powerful body odor pungent enough to rival any Houston homeless shelter after a week of 100+ temps. Thanks, dude.

James Dixon said...

I would think that the Ninja Farter would be a category--the guy who quietly drops some ass on the elevator and then slithers away on the next floor. This phenomenon sucks all the more when someone else gets on on that floor, and you want to say "Hey man, it wasn't me that just crapped my pants."

Note: this category can also be called "I farted on the elevator but want to pretend it wasn't me."

Benson said...

The Take the Elevator One Floor Guy

When faced with the daunting task of taking a single flight of stairs, the TTEOFG has no shame in waiting for an elevator, despite the fact that it would be quicker to take the stairs, he has no physical reason not to the stairs, and frankly, would benefit from taking the stairs a couple of times a day.

Thomas Hobbes said...

LMAO. The only item of note is that the geniuses who designed the CJC only put one light outside the express elevators in the 10th floor lobby. But that explains only the 10th floor "Up/Down" question, and only for those who haven't figured out that the appearance of a white light means "Up."

Leviathan

whimsicalrandomness said...

too funny! i used the elevator this morning, just because the bank was unusually empty at my arrival, and i spotted a 'hold the floor button guy' who apparently has the intuition that holding down your floor button will accelerate the elevator doors causing them to crush any lagging pursuers... and to imagine that extensive studies on the topic have ensued resulting in no scientific remedy. if only we could swap courthouses... but on a normal day, i take the stairs and avoid the madness and cjc visitors altogether.

Ron in Houston said...

My pet peeve is benson's guy.

Damn, it's only one floor can't you take the stairs. It's even worse when it's one flight down rather than up.

When the juvenile courts were on the 4th floor of the family law center, I used to play a mental game in the elevator in the mornings. I called it, "guess who's getting off on the 4th floor?"

I was remarkably good at it.

Anonymous said...

The "I came straight from the bar and reek of alcohol and cigarettes" guy.
The "I think it's appropriate to wear an outfit a hooker would be embarrased to wear in public, to court " guy (usually a girl~and I use this term lightly)
The "I think it's appropriate to wear my pajamas to work" guy.
The "I have steaming hot coffee in my hands and I don't give a damn" guy...

the list is endless... ay ay ay!
HAHA!!!

Anonymous said...

In defense of "Benson's guy", not all floors have access to stairwells, and furthermore, I don't know how jazzed I'd be knowing that rapists and murderers could be in the stairwells with me....

Seer said...

Awesome. You forgot one, though. Also known as "I've never been on an elevator before guy," he acts surprised when the elevator actually begins to move up or down. Also known as "this elevator moves so fast guy," he says "whoa" or something similar when the elevator slows to a stop.

This was especially prevalent in the El Paso County Courthouse where it seems every car had some folks who were on their first elevator ride and had never moved at more than walking speed in their lives.

Anonymous said...

When I AM the "Take the Elevator One Floor Guy," (because occasionally that happens depending on my footwear for the day) I like to make some snide comment like, "You would think I could take the stairs, but then again that would be my workout for the day." And then I chuckle a little. Despite that, I still get snotty looks. But I'm o.k. with it. Now of course, I can't stand the "Take the Elevator One Floor" Guy, when I'm not the one doing it. Geez double standards, who needs 'em? O.k. I do.

Anonymous said...

i agree with Seer..my personal favorite! the lady that is clutching the rail in the back of the elevator as if she's never been on an elevator before.. pleading with Jesus saying "OHLord..ohmygod..lord please help me lord..oh..Sweet Jesus.Father in Heaven..i think i'm gonna be sick." ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!

Cory said...

There's always Mr. No sense of personal space.

You know the guy, you could be on an elevator that's empty except for you and him and he HAS to stand uncomfortably close to you no matter what. There's an extra bonus if he insists on facing you and has a bad case of halitosis.

Oddly enough, these catagories aren't limited just to lawyers. (ok, the "are you a lawyer one is) Accountants and petroleum engineers suffer from all of these as well.

Anonymous said...

It's not fair to bag on people who hold onto the railing for dear life, at least not in these elevators. With all the problems that they demonstrate, there's a legitimate concern that we could all plummet to our deaths.

r. becca said...

this by far is the funniest post you've written. it's all true. i love it.

Anonymous said...

I remember reading in the Chronicle a few years back that a doctor at one of the County Hospitals lost his head in the elevator....literally. The elevator doors closed on his neck when he stuck his head in the elevator as the doors were closing. To the dismay of the elevator passengers, only the poor doctors head made the elevator journey that fateful day as he was decapitated when the elevator passed the next floor....now that would be hard to beat in any county elevator.

Anonymous said...

what about the "I don't know what my lawyer looks like guy". You have seen this guy....he looks at you and says, "excuse me, are you Michael Pham?"

Ron in Houston said...

Anon 11:40

I've never thought about it, but those high heels would make me want to take the elevator and not the stairs.

I've never understood why women will do that to their feet.

Anonymous said...

JAGJO writes:

The elevator can also stand as the purveyor of cheap thrills...

Ahhh, but no one has mentioned the pervy guy. The one that " accidentally" grazes over a female breast (boob grazer) reaching for the buttons or the to hold the door, or the "accidental" butt brusher guy. Whether he pretends to be making room for new riders or situating his brief case , looking at his watch.... you feel the slight of the hand brush across the butt and sometimes it is accompanied with an " opps, sorry about that" and sometimes it's not.

There is also the " blouse peeker downer guy". The one that stands next to the females and pretends to be smiling with the innocence of Beaver Clever but with the devilish leer of Eddie Haskel... all the while taking a lookie loo down the front of the blouse.

Pervy guy transcends all occupational lines. lol

Good post, AHCL!

Anonymous said...

Does anyone else agree that Hecker is one of the most talented punishment lawyers around? I have seen him time and time again get very low sentences in what with any other lawyer would result in a serious sentence.

I was also very surprised about 10 years ago to see him conduct one of the finest crosses against a dna analyst, one that reached such high levels of understanding that only the witness and Hecker had any idea of what they were talking about. The jury and the state were clueless.

He never seems to win a case in guilt, but he often seems to win cases on punishment.

Tex

Roxy said...

FOr the uninitiated: Riding the elevator in the Harris Co. CJC is more often than not a disturbing experience.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget the "I know you're supposed to let the 12 people off the elevator before you go in, but I'm gonna barge on in first so I can get the best spot for the ride" guy.

Favorite response to the one floor guy? I once had a legal assistant who would invariably sweetly ask him/her, "Stairs broken again?"

Anonymous said...

You forgot the guy who mistakes the elevator for a bar and thinks he's gonna get a date. Really? If I was looking it would definitely NOT be in the criminal court house. Of course, I guess you wouldn't have come across this guy personally...but you never know.

Anonymous said...

This list needs to be given out at the jury assembly room....

When an Average Joe shows up for jury duty, he or she is forced to watch a video that would insult the intelligence of any 1st grader in a public school regarding the judicial system.

you list would be much more informative and entertaining.

Anonymous said...

what about "Mrs. I brought all 17 of my kids to court"?

TxGoodie said...

I only have to use the elevators twice a week for 3 months and I've aged waiting for the elevator after traversing the tunnel. I feel for those of you that have to use it to earn a living! NOW I understand why you guys get hourly rates!

I like to find a corner and stay there until the 3rd floor shows up. I appreciate the ones that are in the front that will step out to allow an exit without anyone having to say a word. But, again, only having limited knowledge makes me more grateful for the small favors in life at the CJC.

Anonymous said...

What about the "I don't care how many people are on the elevator, I must get on NOW guy or gal?" They usually reside on the first floor.

Anonymous said...

We simply can't leave out the "I'm the most important person on this elevator just ask me" guy. This position is not exclusive to those with male genatalia but usually requires a prosecutor's badge and less than 2 years experience. Unless there is another prosecutor in the crowd the rules of good elveator etiquette to not apply to them. You will know when we arrive at their destination because you will feel a slight nudge and have the words "Coming off!" barked in your ear.

Anonymous said...

Actually, the worst offenders are the self-important residents of floors 4,5, and 6 who believe that no matter how little space there is on the elevator there is enough space for them and their snarky fellow prosecutors. God forbid they would have to utter the unthinkable: "Excuse me."

But try to get on when they are on the elevator? The unspoken response: "I know you don't really expect me to move. I am a prosecutor." Can you say inflated sense of importance? Ironically, this phenomenon is inversely related to true importance.

A Harris County Lawyer said...

Am I the only one who finds the irony in Anon 9:41's comments on Snarkiness?

Michael said...

Travis County (criminal courthouse). Ten floors. Four elevators. Wanna trade?