Waiting Room Etiquette??

I cannot conjure anything original this week because, both of my vehicles are in the shop. Yes, I know that broken down modes of transport have little, or nothing, to do with penning a column. However, if I were to write something current, it would read like this: &^%$# Van! $%#( Car! It would conclude with this:*&^%$#@@#(*&^%$(^%$#@!%&*(!!!! So, there you know my true feelings. Thank you for your kind understanding in this most pressing matter.

Waiting Room Etiquette??

As my regular readers know, I sometimes mention that seeking out column topics can be quite a task. However, this week I was blessed, due to a curse, and...poof, a rant was born.

I guess I should explain my blessing from a curse riddle. The curse will come to light in the next 87, give or take, paragraphs. The blessing, on the other hand, was how the “incident,” (explained in said paragraphs), morphed into this rant—hence, saving my brain from working overtime.

I realize that the explanation for the riddle is a bunch of confusion wrapped in a blanket of mishmash—but please, humor me anyway. Enough with this clandestine baloney and on with the column.

It all began on an absolutely delightful Valentines Day morning when I arrived a bit early for an appointment. A waiting room was involved, as is normal in such scenarios. So far, so good.

I had to head down a short hallway, on my way to the holding pen region, and I was filled with excitement since I simply couldn't wait to land my caboose on one of those exceptionally comfortable chairs, found in areas of this type across the land.

As I got closer and closer, the steady sound of a female voice piercing the air became more audible with each step taken by me, your humble columnist.

What happened next is stunning. Names have been changed to not only protect the innocent, but to better describe the players involved.

The chick behind the voice, whom I shall call Gabby Gabbington, (GG for short), had cornered an innocent victim, hence forth known as Horrified Gent, (HG for short, as you may have figured), and was droning on endlessly.

GG, I'm quite certain, possessed a gold medal in the Olympic sport of swiftly sailing from subject to subject, oft in one breath, and always with no care for any human being in her path of hot air destruction.

I took my seat and wasted no time in filling out some paperwork. As I did so, I made sure to never look up and to never, ever, eyeball her for any reason, under the sun. As I busied myself with these tasks, she literally traveled from the topic of proper prescription drug disposal to how her dog had destroyed one of those huge rubber toys made for larger breeds.

I know I am prone to exaggeration in this space on a weekly basis but, the above is absolutely true.

Mind you, stating that I did not want to become a captive audience member for her monologue, would be a total, not a partial, understatement.

Horrified Gent tried, in vain, to wedge a word or two in when GG went to take a breath but, it mattered not. Not even a beginning syllable sound could squeeze through the incessant blather exiting her lips with machine-gun-firing rapidity.

I kid you not. GG moved full blast, arms flailing, eyes rolling, while imparting some charming anecdote, having to do with her toy destroying canine, no less.

Then, she paused, ever so hurriedly, for that split-second needed to grab some life-affirming oxygen. At that point, HG actually had the nerve, the chutzpah, if you will, to perhaps mention his own dog. He no sooner said, “I have a do--” before she simply talked over him, pressing on without any regard whatsoever for input on his part.

I mean, can you believe it? How rude of HG to want to actually have a back and forth during a supposed conversation. Yes, sarcasm totally intended.

By this time, the paperwork was done and I had begun to read. I all but held my magazine totally over my face, kind of like they do in movies when Person A is trying to avoid being spotted by Person B. I did settle on the old magazine-on-lap-with-bent-head routine. Then, then...the worst possible thing happened ever.

HG announced that he was going to step out for a smoke, which would leave me trapped with Ms. Gabbington, as we were the only ones in this particular room.

I scrambled for ways to avoid the glance and thought that I would simply continue to read my magazine since, certainly, no human being with any kind of manners would speak to a woman crouched behind a periodical. Would one?

As HG trotted off for his lifesaving cigarette, she continued yelling after him. GG charged forward spewing words of wisdom concerning kicking the habit. Oh, she tried this or that pill with some gum and patches thrown in for good measure and blah, blah, blah.

Mind you, HG was in the process of walking, or, more likely, galloping down the hall in the OPPOSITE direction. You read that right.

The jig was up. There was no way that GG was going to let me off the hook and no amount of reading would hinder her jaw jacking mission.

So, as HG disappeared over the horizon, there was only one direction for this unbelievable woman to travel, and that was to continue with the non smoking chatter with—oops, I mean, TO me. Now, I had my head totally in a downward position, as mentioned earlier. If I would have leaned over, to look at my reading materials, any further, I would have toppled right off the front of my chair. This would have all been sewn up with a somersault into the television.

None of the above seemed to phase her in any way, at all. She cared not that the woman across the room, with whom she was talking, was READING A *&%$ magazine and was not even looking her way!!

Can you dig any of this? She simply pressed on as if the publication, resting on my lap, did not exist.

After reading the same sentence at least 7 times, I made the mistake of taking a lightning-fast gander for just a split-second, I promise. Well, guess what?? She obviously took this a sign of absolute interest.

Much to my chagrin, she talked AT me for a bit and then, thank the dear lord, HG swooped back into the room. However, somewhere along the line, I made the horrific mistake of saying something like, “mmm hmm,” and that was it. There was no getting away and so, I decided to simply give up. I closed the magazine and prepared to imitate my mother when she isn't interested in word one of what another human being is saying.

I simply said, “uh huh,” constantly. Hell, I might have agreed to go out for a coffee with this woman. I haven't a clue as by this time, I had fallen into a light coma. I believe it was a defense mechanism brought on by my mind.

For certain, my nervous system had hit protective mode because all of the sounds, flying from her face, resembled how the teacher on the Charlie Brown TV specials sounds to the viewer.

Please explain to me what part of, “I'm reading and leave me the *%$@ alone” did this hideous woman not understand??

At long last, after what seemed like 12 hours of hard labor, it was my turn to exit the coral and hang with the people at the big table.

I've never exited a room so quickly in my life. I created a wake so strong that the wind, produced by my hasty exit, caused year-old magazines to whip from tables and land on the floor.

As I soared out of the room and down the hall, I could still hear the consistent and very familiar static coming from the trap of our dear, sweet Gabby Gabbington.

The End.