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Park Your Bags Elsewhere!

I’m submitting the following to see if anyone at E-hell can help me find a polite spine and help me to resolve a problem that myself and a number of others seem to run into. Each summer my husband and I attend a gaming convention (think Dungeons and Dragons, etc). This convention is held in a great city that has a large convention space capable of fitting every possible aspect of this convention. Parts of it even spread into neighboring hotels and even the restaurants get into it. It’s truly a great event. The one issue I have run into in the convention center itself is that there’s rarely anywhere to sit. Why? Because every bench is ALWAYS taken up by one person who seems to think that their bags are more important than another human being.

It’s estimated that a person who attends this convention will walk an average of 8 miles a day, whether it’s hoofing it around the hall, or to and from your hotel to the hall to restaurants etc, so proper sit breaks are a MUST now and then. What are we supposed to do or say when we encounter someone who has taken up a whole bench between themselves and the bags of things that they have purchased? I’ve tried a polite, “Hi there, I was just wondering, is anyone sitting on that half of the bench?” and the most frequent response I get is someone barely glancing up at me, snorting as if to say, “Are you serious?”, then sticking their nose back in whatever they were looking at. It got so bad the most recent time I attended that I started seeking out the bathrooms that had chairs for nursing mothers and sitting on those. (And before anyone even asks, if anyone came in obviously in need of that chair, I gave it up.)

It should also be noted that there is NO reasonable excuse for these people to be putting their bags on these benches. There is space on either side of the benches for people to put their things so that they are out of the way of any possible foot traffic. So what do we do to actually reclaim some of this seat space from people who think their bags are more important? 1114-13

I have a streak of orneriness in me and upon hearing that snort, I would have interpreted it as a “no” and said,  “Great!   I am delighted that no one is sitting on that half of the bench. Can I help you move your bags? I really need to rest my feet.”  Done quite cheerfully, btw.

{ 53 comments… add one }
  • Ergala November 29, 2013, 5:56 pm

    @Kate regarding seat belts on buses. That is exactly why my children do not ride school buses actually. Other than the utter lack of supervision on them the lack of safety in case of a crash is also a huge concern for me. However if I do have to ride public transit (a few times we have in a city in a different state) with my children they will not be standing. They will be sitting right next to me as close as I can get them so I have a good tight grip on them.

    When you were a child you may have not felt disrespected but to be quite honest by the time I was 13 I was sick and tired of being told to move so someone else could sit down. At home I’d automatically sit on the floor because it was no big deal, I’d rather sit on the floor there anyways. But on a bus I felt like I was being treated second class because I wasn’t worthy of sitting. Maybe I was tired too, maybe I wasn’t feeling well….that didn’t seem to matter because an adult wanted to sit down and I was a child therefore I needed to give up my seat. And if I spoke up I was told I needed to show respect. And it wasn’t just there, if we were waiting for a table at a restaurant, at a mall on a bench…anywhere there was limited seating. I remember the day I finally said no and that I was tired and wanted to stay on the bench. You’d think I had cursed the person out. How DARE I refuse to move for an adult. I was 11 or 12. Sorry but now with my kiddos, if we are hunting high and low for a bench and finally find one they are going to sit down. If you ask if you can sit down and the bench is obviously taken up by the 4 of us I’m going to say I’m sorry but no, the bench is taken. I’d find it much ruder to give me a dirty look or eye roll for saying it was full when it clearly is….with human beings.

  • Jessica November 30, 2013, 12:41 am

    Some teenagers DO work hard. I am part of a volunteer fire brigade and I have worked a 12 hour shift with a 16 year old at a wildfire and it is HARD work, its hot (not just from the sun but the heat from the burnt trees and ground and the clothing we wear), the work is dirty, the hoses are heavy and there is a lot of climbing and running. We do not get paid for this so because this isnt paying the bills it must not be hard work? he doesnt deserve a seat? Sometimes we get a nap beside the road or in the fire truck but mainly we are on our feet that whole time and sitting down on the way home would be HEAVEN.

  • Auryn Grigori December 2, 2013, 6:53 pm

    I would be more than happy to put my one year old in my lap if I had much of one, however, my fiance gets horrible shooting pains if he has her in his lap for any length of time, and I am more able to control her if she is beside me, plus I don’t have to worry that she will fall off of my limited lap.

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