WALKING TALL! There is a phenomenon in Officeland (Hi Pax!) which also holds true in every other walk of life -- and that's the walker. Or different types of walker one has to endure while trying to get thru this life. I'm not talking the regular walker here -- I'm referring to the incompetent walker. You know the ones I mean. These are people who, for one reason or another, have not managed to get the hang of walking -- even though they have reached the age of adulthood and apparently have managed to feed themselves and hold down a job.
Now there are several types of walkers whom I encounter on a daily basis; let's see if you recognize any of them, shall we?
Firstly we have the basic rules of walking which most people follow (unless of course you're English -- Hi Ernest! -- and drive on the left) and that is that one should walk like they drive. The general rule is "Keep right! Keep right!" You know, just like George W. Anyway, this is not THAT essential until we come to the subject of corners -- of which there are a LOT in the office where I work. Now, this first incompetent walker is the person who keeps to the left when they're walking around a corner -- result being that you, who are walking correctly on the right hand side, will collide or nearly collide with the person barrelling around the corner on the left. This type of incompetent walker I call "The Mini Cooper" because they not only keep to the left but also careening around corners like Michael Caine with a shipment of gold! This person is also the same person who usually looks at you like YOU should excuse yourself.
The second incompetent walker I call "The Linda Blair". Why. Because this is the guy who is walking towards you at full speed while facing the other direction. Usually it's a good idea to look in the direction which you are walking but this fella is walking forwards while he has his head turned around to see where he's been. He's invariably holding a conversation with someone behind him but doesn't think enough of this person to actually stop and listen to them. Needless to say, this guy is barrelling towards YOU while looking behind him resulting either in a collision (which he will look at you as if YOU should excuse YOURSELF) or causes you to have to jump wildly out of this nitwit's way.
Next we have "The Center of the Universe". This is the person who is floating in the middle of a busy hallway showing no progress and either staring blankly into space or having a conversation with someone who is ALSO "The Center of the Universe" -- result being that people walking in either direction cannot get through while "The Center of the Universe" makes no effort to move out of the way OR even acknowledge your presence. Hey, this person can even be combined with Pax's favourite: The Office Popcorn-Bag-Shaker!
Now we come to "Halley's Comet" -- this is the person who seems to be walking normally on the right hand side BUT WAIT!!! That's just a ruse. Suddenly their path starts to curve inexorably towards the oncoming you -- for no reason other than Kepler's law of elliptical orbits, apparently. This person does not want to talk to you; does not even make eye contact with you. Perhaps they were born on the side of a mountain. Either way, while you are innocently walking on the right hand side this other person is slowly curving towards you on a collision course. I think that person is usually named Velikovsky.
Next we find "The Heel-Toe-It". Now this person is always in front of you. You are usually in a hurry or else carrying something heavy. And yes, this person walks so slowly that a snail would give them windburn. Now sometimes this person may have bad feet or be morbidly obese or elderly; then it's not really something they can help and one just has to grin and bear it because frankly it would be rude to make an issue out of it. However, the REAL "Heel-Toe-It" is physically fit as a fiddle and ready for love -- as long as they don't have to RUN to get it. Because they ain't gonna get there any time soon. And neither are you because you're stuck behind them. "The Heel-Toe-It" can frequently be found with other "Heel-Toe-It" carrying on a conversation while inching slowly along; does this convert them into "Center of the Universes"?!?! The controversy still rages on!
Naturally there are some incompetent walkers I've forgotten to mention. I'm sure you can come up with a few. . .