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Archive for October, 2011

Line Up!!!!!

I parked at a different park & ride lot yesterday.  I was proud of myself for remembering the plan in both the morning commute and evening commute.


As I pulled into the lot I had to decide where to park so I would be able to find my vehicle ever again (it is a huge lot with several entrances).  I parked, took my bearings and headed to the bus shelter.  Two people were inside.  I leaned on the corner.  I was pretty sure this was not where I was supposed to be.  Each day when my bus from down in the valley comes thru here I see a long line, sometimes two lines.  I often wondered, why do people line up in the West line versus the East line?  It is not more obvious when you are a participant rather than an observer.  I looked over and sure enough there were four people lined up.  I left my leaning spot and lined up behind them.  Why?  I have no idea, it just seemed like the right thing to do.

 By the time a bus comes there are over 20 people in line.  The door opens and the line starts moving.  This is not a bus that will get me to downtown.  Will I be forced to board because I am next in line?  My intended bus pulls in right behind.  Like a well-choreographed dance every other person peels off, some straight ahead, some take a hard left to board my bus.  This is all done without a single spoken word.


 Speaking of lines, at my ‘normal’ park & ride, there is also a line.  This line I understand.  First come, first served.  This is also unspoken.  There are always those who arrive from the West, appear to be studying the posted bus schedule while staging themselves at the head of the line (which has grown to 15 now).  Where do people learn line etiquette?  Do they know that should go to the end of the line because they arrived last?  Do they understand but choose to crowd to make sure they get a good seat?  In typical Seattle fashion, at least one person behind them will offer them a look of disbelief with head shaking as the offender heads thru the bus door first.  Unless the offender has eyes in the back of their head, this is wasted.  Very occasionally someone will say something.  The oft heated discussion lasts until both are seated, changing nothing.

People are fascinating.

Lessons Learned from the Dollar Store

Grayden and Hailoh came to visit last week.  It was a fun week capped off by a trip to the Dollar Store.  Here are some lessons we learned from that trip:

  1. Toys with long plastic sticks topped with something heavy on top (princess wand with streamers) last approximately 5 seconds. Hailoh’s broke on the way out of the package.
  2. There’s an ap for that.  Garry found a ‘balloon kit’ that came with 25 super-skinny balloons and a tiny pump and no instructions.  Expectations were high.  He found an ap on his phones on how to make flowers, animals etc.
  3. Small plastic balls that come with any toy will disappear in an average size living room in 7-10 seconds.  Hint – check under the couch, grab a sweeper and sweep.  Of course now the sweeper becomes a huge distraction and has to be taken away lest someone gets hurt.
  4. Plastic dancing shoes are sized for no one.  Expect them to break upon any attempt to resize.
  5. The concept of 5 things for 5 dollars each is a concept lost on 3-4 year olds as they fill the basket with anything that catches their eye.  As one goes in, one must come out “do you like this better than that?”  It is an iterative process.
  6. The first item chosen is often the best and longest lasting.  Grayden found a gold helmet with slide down mask.  It was a keeper.
  7. Superglue is your best friend.  It is the only thing to extend the life of #1 (toys with long sticks).
  8. If a toy doesn’t work as advertized, 4 year olds will make it into another toy.  His ball gun didn’t really shoot balls, they just fell out.  He learned to drop them in a line and dare anyone entering the kitchen to jump over them.
  9. There is tax at the Dollar Store.  Come prepared as $5 does not equal 5 toys.  If you try to leave without paying the tax, the cops some (that’s what we told the kids).
  10. Educational toys placed in the basket by well meaning adults will be swapped out for things that shoot or have streamers.