How To Take The Escalator

by Marinka on August 19, 2011

So, you’ve decided to take an escalator! Congratulations! This is going to be an awesome day. Just follow these simple instructions and soon you’ll be on your way, either up or down!


1. Walk onto the escalator. Do not pause in front of the escalator and ponder your life, this week’s episode of Project Runway or who it was that first invented escalators. Just step on! STEP ON. Because there are people behind you and as you reflect on life and all of God’s creatures, they hate you.

2. Once you’re on, you have to make a decision. Do you want to stand on the escalator and have it magically move you to your destination? Or are you going to use the escalator as your magical treadmill and walk up the said escalator.

3. If you’re going to stand still, stand to the right. You can tell where the right is because YOU ARE OLDER THAN FOUR. If you are going to walk up the moving escalator, walk up the left side. The part where people are not standing.

4. If you are a huge asshole, stand in the middle, blocking everyone’s way.

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by my morning commute. And inspired by AlphaMom’s Guide To Everything series.

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{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

Brittany (BrittanyandTahn) August 19, 2011 at 10:10 am

Thank you!

We need more How To’s like this…

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Avitable August 19, 2011 at 10:35 am

But what if I’m scared that the moving stairs are going to eat me?

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Bitchin' Amy
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 10:48 am

I never take the escalator. Or, as I like to call them, the Devil’s Stairwell.

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Ann
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 10:49 am

And for God’s sake, get control of your wheeling suitcase. Hint: elevator.

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Zee August 19, 2011 at 11:16 am

God, I miss New York.

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Lynn MacDonald (All Fooked Up)
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 11:23 am

Excellent…can’t wait for the “People mover in the airport” how to guide!

Of course, we don’t have that many escalators in Greensboro, NC…

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Bekah August 19, 2011 at 12:27 pm

People who forget the escalator rules drive me insane. And let’s not even talk about the jerks who try to get IN an elevator before letting other people OUT.

Although I should really shut up because you should have seen me as the huge, rude American tourist in Tokyo trying to figure out the escalator situation that is backwards (stand on the left, walk on the right).

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Kat August 19, 2011 at 1:09 pm

This is so true and I’m glad you posted it! Could we throw in about how people touch the nasty handrail when every little kid snotted in their hand then held on for dear life? Or the lady that ignores the no stroller sign and blocks the whole thing with her stroller and 10 other kids.

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Sophie@Fabrications August 19, 2011 at 1:23 pm

You should write one about taking an elevator with a baby stroller.

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Issa
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 2:20 pm

This is something some people are lacking. For me, it was learned around the same time I learned to look both ways at a cross walk and to not press all the elevator buttons. Maybe some peoples parents are morons?

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tracy
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 2:57 pm

Now if you could help me hold all three of my kids hands while getting on the escalator – and yes one still thinks it’s going to eat her – and then make them stand still, I would appreciate any tips. My kids really need more practice. Maybe that’s what we will do for fun on Sunday. Or not.

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magpie August 19, 2011 at 2:58 pm

God, I hate tourists.

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Yuliya
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 4:17 pm

I’m terrified of escalators. So thank you for that.

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Kara August 19, 2011 at 4:27 pm

I am NOT afraid of escalators – just their filthy, germ-spattered handrails. *shudders*

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Alison@Mama Wants This
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 4:58 pm

A.Men.

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Peajaye
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 5:20 pm

suggestion: 4a. then when people who need to pass you say, “Excuse me,” look at them like you have no fucking idea what they mean, what they are doing, or where they could possible be going.

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Jessica
Twitter:
August 20, 2011 at 12:21 am

HAHAHAHAA This is EXACTLY what happened to me the whole time I was visiting my sister in NYC. Every time I said Excuse me I got weird looks. Maybe it was the southern accent, but it was annoying!

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b a seagull
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 6:44 pm

An escalator ate my gown while I wasn’t paying attention. Not all of it- just the hem, enough to pitch me forward. Still a klutz but very attentive on escalators.

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Abbey August 19, 2011 at 7:02 pm

I’d been giving the benefit of the doubt to the tourists in my town thinking perhaps the stand-right, walk-left rule was unique to here. Now that I know the rule stands in NY as well, I’m going back to being disgusted with people. There should also be tourist lines in the metro for when they stand there looking at it how to put their ticket in when the rest of us are about ready to miss our train.

About the elevator. I experience this a lot in my building and sometimes am the offender of not waiting. However, how are you supposed to know when the door opens that people are in there when it’s a generally rare occasion. Don’t you look like some sort of idiot waiting for an empty elevator?

P.s., I’m not to blame for the idiot elevator riders that hide in the front corner and wait 5 seconds following the door opening and then run smack into me.

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andrea August 29, 2011 at 9:14 pm

For those that want to walk, USE THE STAIRS. I know, you are in such a hurry you have to run up the escalator and be first in line waiting for the next step. Slow down and live.

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NYCSingleMom August 19, 2011 at 10:27 pm

what about the people who stop at the top. UGH!!!

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the mama bird diaries
Twitter:
August 19, 2011 at 11:06 pm

Word.

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Bridget August 20, 2011 at 1:38 am

I have this same problem with the parent pick-up line. The right lane is for waiting, for letting kids get in or out of the car. The left lane is for passing through after you have dropped off or picked up said kids. Stopping in the left lane to let your kids our or wait fro them is dick.

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Becky
Twitter:
August 20, 2011 at 7:10 am

I will be printing this out and posting it in the DC Metro system. People using moving stairways in DC’s mass transit system can’t seem to figure this out either. We like to call them tourists.

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erin@mommyonthespot August 20, 2011 at 11:03 am

Love this!

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Jessica August 20, 2011 at 11:26 am

You forgot the most important rule: get the fuck out of the way when your ride is over! Nothing worse than a pile up at the top because of one moron.

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Adventures In Babywearing August 20, 2011 at 12:52 pm

LOL!!!!

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dusty earth mother August 20, 2011 at 2:09 pm

And let me add: there is a reason they say no strollers on the escalator. Because someone (not me, of course, not me! Perish the thought!) might not listen to that warning and fall backwards on the escalator with her kid in the stroller and cause all the people behind her to scream and pick her up en masse. But as I said, that was NOT ME.

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Penbleth
Twitter:
August 20, 2011 at 4:15 pm

This is great and even better to see an American realising that the movement should be on the left-hand side, just like us Brits.

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absence of Alternatives
Twitter:
August 20, 2011 at 6:11 pm

THANK YOU. As someone who is always rushing to catch the last train that will get me home so my kids are not left out in the dark with no parent to pick them up, I appreciate this PSA. For Multi-escalator-takers, yes, if you stand after the other person (instead of side by side) you will both arrive and I promise you will not be separated.

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ladyday August 20, 2011 at 6:12 pm

You left out the most important step. Step 5: when you get to the end of your escalator ride, MOVE your ass! Do not stop to look at your map or consult with your friends as to where you want to go. Just MOVE out of the way!

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Kara August 21, 2011 at 4:57 pm

I can only hope this is the beginning in a how to series. Perhaps subsequent titles will include, “Blinkers On Your Butt: How to Maneuver Your Body Throughout Aisles So I Don’t Kill You” and “Flushing Public Toilet Seats and Wiping off the Pee: Also, So I Don’t Kill You”. This was a great guide!

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Glamamom
Twitter:
August 21, 2011 at 7:12 pm

They should frame this and put it in every subway station.

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Alexandra
Twitter:
August 23, 2011 at 10:18 am

I love the idea of this series. So McSweeneys.

Have to go check it out, b/c this was so perfect, I want to go see more.

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