My dad is a very funny and a pretty laid-back guy but if there is one thing he is very serious about it’s escalators.
Where I grew up there were no escalators. Whenever you live in the country, going shopping is of the utmost importance when you’re in a city, therefore, I received a suitable amount of escalator exposure when we’d come to Toronto to visit my grandmother. At these times, I would receive stern instructions on appropriate escalator behaviour from my father.
- Hold the rubber thing at all times;
- DO NOT SIT ON THE STEPS;
- Check your pants 50,000 times to ensure they’re not dragging on the ground as this could lead you to get caught in the escalator; and
- Start preparing to get off the escalator at about the mid-point of your ride.
It may seem so, but my dad is not actually insane. He’s just the over-protective father of an only child. Nevertheless, all this made me more than a little bit paranoid about escalators. You will still find me gripping the rubber thing tightly and checking if my clothes are dragging to this day. And to this day you’ll still find my dad getting irate when he sees a kid misbehaving on an escalator. "People get killed on escalators all the time!"
I’ve always had a particular affection for Brodie of Mallrats because his freakish concern over escalators reminds me my dad.
"Listen, not a year goes by, not a year, that I don’t hear about some escalator accident involving some bastard kid which could have easily been avoided had some parent – I don’t care which one – but some parent conditioned him to fear and respect that escalator."
Let me tell you Brodie, my dad is that parent. I should, I suppose, be really shocked and horrified about the crazy escalator accident at Union Station yesterday. I should, but man, after 30 years of harping on escalator safety, I’m just happy that my dad has finally, finally been vindicated.