Where did they all come from?
Whilst in the UK recently, I had the revered opportunity to take the London Underground. No one likes the Tube. It's something that we suffer collectively as a 'British Thing'. In New York, people are just afraid, not angered. In the UK, people are angered because of idiots.
There are ALOT of idiots on the Tube.
I am more than sure that when I was last forced to utilise the Tube on such a regular basis for such a long time that there were not as many. Have they been multiplying? Is this how the film Idiocracy starts? With the UK's public transport system?
There seems to be no way to weed them out effectively at the moment.
There is a very simple system on the tube for paying for your ticket. It is called an Oyster Card. When you get to the ticket stall, you touch the card to the bright yellow circular reader. It reads your card and opens the gate. This whole system of touching and gate opening can happen in as little as 1 second.
Touch, Open, Pass.
It really is that simple.
Or so it would seem. There are some pre-requisites for this to occur. Firstly, the person who wishes to pass the gate must have their card ready. Ready to touch the bright yellow circle. Idiots do not know how to ready their card. By getting it out of their pockets. This leaves people standing in front of the gate, fiddling around in pockets or purses. Blocking the gates.
It does not occur to these people that they could simply move to the side and allow the frequently immense stream of people to pass them by.
As an experiment I stood (out of the way) and observed some of these people fidgeting around looking for their elusive RFID chip enabled Oyster Card.
Five whole minutes. That's how long one idiot took. Amazing. It's almost as if they were magically transported there with no prior warning that there would be a ticket gate. Almost as if they had not just spent an hour on the tube getting there. In full knowledge that this moment would come. Five minutes was the worst offender, but in the twenty minutes I stood there, there was more than just one person deserving of the moniker idiot. Eight. EIGHT. How is it possible that they have integrated themselves into society unbeknown to the rest of the world?
The gate blockers are not the only idiots though. They have relatives in the idiot tree of life.
These relatives are of course the real blockers. The people who are one minute walking along one of the many line-interchange routes, perhaps changing from the Circle line to the Victoria line, inside a pedestrian tunnel two and a half meters wide and feel the need to just stop. No apparent reason, just stop.
Watching this happen from the other side of people traffic is like watching someone set off dominoes, but in reverse. Pile up. Amazingly, the idiots always manage to get annoyed at the people behind them walking into them, as if they had given off all the warning signals in the world that they were about to stop (Klaxxons, red lights, warning beacons, shotgun rounds fired into the ceiling, an "I'm about to stop sign"). To this day I have never seen a valid reason for one stopping, but stop they do.
The third type of blocker is possibly the most infuriating. They are the blocker that will not, under any circumstances, move down the carriage to make more space for other fellow passengers. Oh no sir, not on your nelly. Not only would this allow other people to board the train, but would alleviate many from the cramped conditions that daily force people towards other peoples sweaty armpits.
Why move, when half of your body is in space and others are coveting your space? I suppose this is part of the herd like mentality of the human race. Don't do something ingenious or clever. Just stand there and be an idiot. It suits you better.
There is something we can do however. I implore you to write to London Underground. Write to them and ask that a mandatory IQ test be given to people when they apply for an Oyster Card. Perhaps this could weed out some of the chaff from the largely chaff based populace?