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Memphis, Tennessee, United States
Small town paralegal in the city. Once ran a law office, now being run by one. Med mal defense litigation. I think it's growing on me.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Snub in the Elevator

Every elevator ride is different and so is every elevator personality. I believe I've met them all at this point. Something about confined spaces brings out the best and worst in people. 

My own elevator personality is cautiously friendly. If someone speaks to me, I will speak back. I keep an open smile on my face in the effort to be friendly and receptive. I often look down, and when uncomfortable, I either play on my phone or clasp my hands in front of me.

Sometimes a group of people who know each other will step on, and I will feel outnumbered and shy. Other times we will speak awkwardly about the weather. Often I will meet a new face, and we will hit it off on the way to the first floor over shoes or purses or some other thing we have in common.

And sometimes, even in this adult world, in a city, in a big building full of professionals, in an apartment complex inhabited by young  adults, I step onto an elevator that immediately takes me back to high school, a time when I was less assured of myself, insecure, and too eager to fit in. They are the elevator equivalent of the cool kids at school, and they tend not to talk to me, the runt. They have perfect city-professional clothes and sleek hair. They carry portfolios or drag suitcases full of important papers behind them. They avoid looking me in the eyes, and they exude an air of business and importance. They wear expensive shoes. For an eternity of fifteen seconds, I forget my confidence and my worldview and shrink a little on the inside.

Then the doors open and I step into a sun-filled lobby. All of the tension spills into the open air, dissipating. I am myself again in an instant. I am good as gold. I am ready for the next ride up. 


  1. I work with a couple of people like that. It drives me insane.

  2. Thankfully I do not know any people like this... I only pass them in the elevator from time to time. :^)

  3. I think I'm exactly the same way. I would do and feel all of the same things you described.