A friend and I were at an amusement park in Ontario, Canada where there was a new roller coaster. This park has many thrill rides, and by the time we made our way to the new roller coaster, the line extended way past the ride entrance and the wait time was over an hour. We got in line and chatted while we waited.
An hour later, we were in the final stretch of the long line. After winding and turning on itself, the line had looped back around to the front of the ride, close to where an attendant was standing. Suddenly, two big young males leaped over the barrier right in front of us and started waving and hollering at their friends – who were considerably farther back in line – to hurry up and join them up at the front.
My friend and I looked at each other and exchanged glances with our fellow rule-abiding line mates, but nobody seemed inclined to do anything. I tapped the attendant’s shoulder to get her attention and said, “Excuse me, but these two guys just cut right in front of us and they’re trying to bring their friends over to cut in as well.” She went over to them and said, “These girls said you cut in front of them.” The two guys looked over with exaggerated shocked expressions and asked with wide eyes, “We cut in front of you?” And they moved behind us so they weren’t in front of us any longer. The attendant didn’t leave it there and asked the father with three boys who were in front of us whether the guys had cut in line, and he replied yes. She told the guys, “That’s two groups of people who say that you cut in line, I can’t let you stay, please get out of the line.” But they still wouldn’t leave. They started protesting loudly that they were in line the whole time while we all shook our heads. The attendant maybe thought that one more witness would help make the guys get out of line, so she asked the pre-teen girls who were in line behind us – and were now separated from us by these obnoxious line-cutters – whether the guys had cut the line. The girls were obviously scared to speak up and mumbled that they didn’t know. The guys took this as proof in their favour said, “See? We were here the whole time.”
By now, the line had moved forward slightly and we were starting to head up the stairs that led up to the boarding platform. The attendant gave up on trying to get the guys out of line, since they were clearly intent on staying and loudly protesting their innocence, so we ended up all filing to the top of the stairs and stopping on a landing. We let it go. After all, the attendant was young, she looked like a high school student and we had done as much as we thought was appropriate to have him dealt with.
Once the attendant was out of sight, the guys again started hollering at their other friends to come join them. Then one of them actually turned to my friend and reproached her, “Girl, I can’t believe you were going to call us out like that back there, that wasn’t cool.” My friend turned out to be awesome and said, “What’s not cool is you and your buddy cutting to the front of an hour-long line. What makes you so special that you can’t wait in line like everyone else?” He said, “I waited in the line, just like you.” And she said, “You didn’t wait an hour here with us.” He got kind of aggressive and said, “I’ve waited long enough, I’ve waited a long time. Why are you getting all up in my face about it?”
I got over my incredulity that this conversation was even taking place, and I said, “You need to stop trying to make us seem ‘uncool’ for ratting you out to the attendant and be grateful that you got away with cutting the line.” He changed his tune and came back with, “I didn’t cut in front of you, you don’t know what you’re talking about.” And I said, “Come on, we’re not stupid, we’ve been standing here for an hour with these people. This man and these boys were ahead of us and those ladies-” I pointed behind him, “were behind us. You and I both know that you jumped in line in front of us and that you don’t belong here. Maybe you waited in the line, but you didn’t wait with us, you waited down there with those friends you’ve been hollering at. So if I were you, I’d be thankful that I got away with it and stop arguing. Because in case you’ve forgotten, I’m the one with the big mouth who called you out down there and I can just as easily get to the boarding platform and tell one of those attendants what you did and get you kicked out then. We are NOT the ones you should be antagonizing.”
He had nothing to say then and skulked backwards a little so that the pre-teen girls and a couple other groups came in between us. What was most rewarding was that as the pre-teen girls took their places behind us, they whispered to us, “That was awesome, you were amazing!” I told them that we were in the right and that as long as we stayed calm, even if the guys made a huge crazy scene, no one would have blamed us for anything.
I didn’t rat the guys out at the front of the line, but due to the way the line separates at the top so people can stand in smaller stalls to board the car, they did end up in the seats directly behind us. My friend and I took satisfaction in the thought that even though they got away with it, their experience of the new roller coaster was likely tainted by knowing they were surrounded by people who all thought they were asses, and having to sit behind the people who had humiliated them with a verbal beat-down. 0703-12