Dear Matron of a Family of Four-Hundred Standing in the Hot Dog Line at the Greek Festival,
I think it's wonderful that you were out as a family - I know that, with so many children of varying ages, it must be awfully difficult to find entertainment that the whole family can enjoy.
Lovely, too, that you ran across someone Greek! At the Greek Festival!!
That you then had to stop and chat with the nice young man, who seemed to know you quite well and was enthusiastically and in great detail telling you all about his latest fifteen years' of escapades, I understand. Who doesn't want to catch up with what may actually have been a distant cousin because you both have Greek last names? At the Greek Festival!!
I really don't blame your enthusiasm for the conversation, but I would like to know one thing...
Is it a Greek trait, or merely a distinct lack of courtesy in your upbringing that led you to halt your large numbers right in front of the line for hot dogs (a distinctly non-Greek food that my Evil Genius would have happily killed your whole family to get, because it seems I only feed him when out in public, which is rare. Seriously, he would have used the edge of one of those Greek potatoes to cut you if that hot dog wasn't forthcoming)?
I'm going with rude on this one.
You see, I wasn't hovering behind your hoard so I could listen in on your scintillating dissection of the young man's brother's behavior at a baseball game (although kudos to the lad for scoring a home run). And when I waited ten whole minutes behind you until you ran out of breath and had to suck in some oxygen or die and so rudely asked "Umm, excuse me, but are y'all waiting in line?", there was no need for you to cut me such a glare and snottily answer back "Tch, no!" like I was some kind of mammoth-family stalker or something, looking to snatch one of your offspring and feed it to my young...although one of them did look remarkable like a sausage and may have tasted delightful dipped in ketchup/catsup.
Really, I don't think I was unreasonable in my assumption that you were in line, since you were standing in front of the register...although, in hindsight, you were a whole eight inches away, and clearly I was in the wrong for presuming you were possibly seeking affordable sustenance for you brood - who, by the way, were delightful as they gambolled about, running into people, pushing other children out of the way, screaming and tugging at you insistently because they had! To go potty! Right now! Honestly, I think that puddle was there before.
I do appreciate that you eventually moved the herd out of the line and granted access to the rest of the festival-attending public - I know getting that many people to migrate is like planning troop movements, and you have my utmost respect for your creative use of threats of bodily injury...and murmuring commiserating comments about some people being so unreasonable and too lazy to go around? Way to give the troops a common enemy and deflect responsibility for your discourtesy!
Wishing you all the best in your continued hunt for awkward places to stop and have lengthy conversations,
Dear Sir or Madam (whom I've taken to referring to as Honky McHonkerson),
I'm so sorry to irritate you with such a trifling matter. really, I know I'm just unreasonable, out of line, going beyond the pale in this, but I feel the need to share my distress with you. I'm so selfish that way.
I know your time is precious. I know it's awkward an annoying when you have to hang up your cell phone or use it to call the house you're parked in front of. I'm certain it's far too much to hope you might actually get out of your vehicle, approach the front door, ring the bell, and wait for someone to answer.
Really, I know, it's ridiculous I should even suggest such a thing. What am I thinking.
Of course it's better if you pull up in the neighbor's driveway and honk. Really, it's perfectly understandable that, when no one runs from the house in .064 seconds, you honk again, twice for emphasis. When no one has flung themselves from the house to answer your summons, I think you are showing the height of restraint to only honk twenty or so more times. Such patience! Such reserve!!
I wonder, though...do you think you might consider that your horn isn't directional, and so all of us who dwell in these environs will hear it? And...oh, I know, really, it's too much to hope...maybe you could consider that some of us may be a wee jumpy, and loud noises upset or offend us? Also...I'm certain no one has mentioned this or you would never continue the practice...but it's rude to simply drive up and honk. In this age of cell phones, you can call while turning onto the street, or into the driveway, although that might mean hanging up on your BFF and his/her dissertation on the latest office gossip (I know! How could I even think it??) Even better would be a polite knock on the door and greeting the parents who have been allowing your child to play with theirs. Oh, but wait - you might have to hang up and actually leave the vehicle. It's madness, I tell you.
Thank you, dear friends, for providing an object lesson for the Evil Genius, who has seen his mother wakened from a sound nap by your gentle reminder that you're waiting there. He now knows that the mother of whatever young lady he may choose to call upon will always have the opportunity to greet him at the door, because HIS mother will tan his ever-lovin' hide if he ever uses his horn for anything but a warning of danger to fellow motorists.
Rest assured, I plan on discovering where you live and returning the favor in some fashion. Your kids wouldn't need a lesson in how to remove acetone from a car's finish, would they??
Yours in cacophony,