So this guy tried to cut ahead of me in line the other day. Poor guy, there was no way for him to anticipate how seriously mistaken he was about to be. You see, I was in line for Amala. Let me put things into context. In my world, Amala is king! I have been a lover of food for as long as I can remember. If I could, I would eat for a living (I mean beyond the eating for a living I already do) Sure, I flirt with cheesecake, burgers, ice cream, donuts, party jollof, suya, small chops but at the end of the day my true love is Amala.
My dad likes to tell the story of my very first time in a Chinese restaurant. It was a huge gathering and there were many options but mini-me was not impressed. After looking around, I turned to my folks, crossed my arms and declared, to their eternal amusement and my continual shame, “Me, I want Amala!” (I was about five) While I have learnt to love Chinese food, my love of Amala continues to trump all. In fact, the last time I went to the village, I had Amala for breakfast, lunch and dinner for two whole days and would have continued to do so if I had stayed any longer.
So you see, when this imbecile, took one look at me, all prim and proper in a suit and heels at a local bukka and though, “What could she possibly do?” He was asking for it. On a scale of one to Tonto Dikeh releasing another album, his mistake was worse than Tonto doing a “High” remix.
Did I mention that there were ten people before me and only three people behind me, though the three were standing in the sun.
Being a reasonable person, I asked him if he was supposed to be ahead of me. He must have been to chicken to lie because his response can only be described as a half nod/wink hybrid. In my experience, people who do not want to get caught in a lie, tend to give vague replies, designed to mislead. Unfortunately for this guy, his face wasn’t made for winking. His wink was the eye equivalent of the palm-scratch handshake. MALES OF THE WORLD, Nobody likes this handshake!
Searching for intelligent life, I tapped the lady in front and I asked her if he was with or after her.
she wasn’t buying his wink either.
Like that but a lot less smiley.
“Please, go to the back of the line.”
He nods but continues to stand there.
So I go up another bar and repeat my statement.
At this point people began to watch, some smiled but mostly they did nothing, my coworker began to try and sooth me, but there was no going back. I am not ashamed to say that I was prepared to fight him. What I lacked in size, I made up for in craziness, an inability to be embarrassed where Amala is involved and an impressive history of Kung Fu movies. I walked round him and give my coworker the stink-eye till she joined me. I would not let the honour and dignity of Amala to be tainted by that man.
During rush hour the three people behind me would have turned to 20 and that would have showed him, but I had arrived early to avoid long lines. My one regret was that there was no walk of shame for him. He got his food and when he caught up to me in the stew line, he tried to flirt. Smiling, he asked if I am happy. Luckily I’m not brain damaged.
If Amala wasn’t the nectar of gods, I would have introduced my plate to his shirt and happily lined up for more. Instead I gave him my bestthe-new-guy-crazy-eyes and walked away.
Ladies and gentlemen, no one wants to be standing in line, so when you find yourself in one please remember:
Line cutting is inexcusable except when someone’s life is really on the line or the line cutter is really old or very pregnant.
2. Yes I know that when one person allows their friend into the line it will not significantly increase my time in the line but if I allow one person then there is no good reason to disallow others.
To people who pretend that their friend has been here all along, you are fooling nobody, especially not Karma.
4. If a line is too long do not just show up and start a new line unless instructed to do so. If instructed to do so, people already in line have priority.
To the people behind the desk, when you cater to line jumpers and line creators you are rewarding and encouraging their bad behaviour. This goes double for people who join such lines.
6. If you are in the company of several friends or kids don’t all line up. This keeps happening at silverbird. One person should hold all the money and buy the tickets while the remaining people stand in the corner. If the person in line gets lonely, only one other person should keep her or him company.
It’s a numbers thing. It’s sometimes acceptable to allow one friend into the line, but if a whole bunch of your friend show up, do the right thing and all go to the back of the line…together.
8. You have no business being in a line if you have no idea what you want or if you are there to visit the person behind the counter. It’s not therapy, get to the point and get gone.
Even if you hate people, endeavour to tell the person in front of you when you are stepping out and tell the person behind you when you return that you are just returning. People are not mind readers. A sure way to enrage a stranger is by squeezing in front of them without offering an explanation.
10. Finally, don’t fall victim to one of the classic blunders. The most famous of which is “never get involved in a land war in Asia” but only slightly less well-known is this: “Never try to cut in front of a Nigerian girl when Amala is on the line.”
This is what victory looks like!