Friday, April 15, 2005

You Say Elevator, I Say Escalator

I avoid the elevators at work. I’m not claustrophobic or afraid of heights. It’s just that the particular elevators at my job make me sick. They accelerate and decelerate a little too quickly, nauseating me. To make matters worse, the doors open before the car has stopped moving! I leave the elevator queasy and unsettled.

You would think, given my fitness mania, that I would take the stairs instead. However, I rarely enter the staircase. I am usually wearing shoes that are wholly inappropriate for stair climbing. Spike heels are a bit unsteady and mules make a horribly loud *CLACK* as one descends. The stairs are also inconvenient. Only one staircase is easy to find. The other is hidden at the end of a cubicle maze. Most importantly, though, one cannot enter or exit the stairs on the second floor, where the skybridge to the other buildings is located. How illogical!

Thankfully, we have five flights of escalator. I adore the escalator. It doesn’t make me sick and it services the second floor. Although it only extends to the fifth floor, that is high enough for me. I work on the fourth and the cafeteria is on the fifth. If I am in a hurry or feeling energetic, I walk the escalator. I love the way my steps, combined with the escalator’s motion, rush me to the next floor. I feel like a giant, covering leagues with each stride.

The escalator shaft is open to the lobby on the first floor, but must be entered through a door on the other floors. The rumbling machinery generates quite a bit of heat and the warmth remains trapped within the shaft. After sitting beneath the air-conditioning vent for a few hours, the escalator’s steamy heat is welcome. When particularly chilled, I’ve been tempted to just ride up and down, from the fifth floor to the first and back again, until warmed.

Riding the escalator has its price. I have to walk an extra fifty feet to the escalator doors, vice taking the stairs or elevator. I figure the additional exercise excuses me from any stair climbing. I also have to risk looking odd in front of my coworkers when I decline to join them in the elevator. They must think me claustrophobic or acrophobic or simply strange. Sometimes I swallow my bile and climb into the car. Whenever good manners will allow, though, I continue down the hallway to my beloved escalator. With my giant strides and the long wait for an elevator car, I sometimes beat them to our destination!


At 6:01 PM, Blogger Londyn said...

Although I do not share your elevator sickness/phobia, I completely understand the necessity of skipping the stairs when in heels! One must pay a price for beauty, and in our cases it just happens to be foregoing the use of stairs.

At 3:40 PM, Blogger Scott in Washington said...

I never use the elevator at work unless I am pushing a cart or something that forces me to. I like to bound up the brick stairwell, taking two or three at a time, which makes me feel all powerful and in shape when really I only have two flights of about ten steps each to climb. I especially don't like the elevator because it smells like feet in there and once another elevator rider got me in the corner and tried to high pressure sell me beef delivered to my house - like I'm going to buy beef from a stranger in an elevator while smelling feet.

At 12:35 PM, Blogger Kasmira said...

Scott - GROSS! At least our elevators are nice. No feet smell. Just tummy bumps. Blech.


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