As I said before, these stories are only gonna get better.
I passed the rest of Friday very well. I went to Shake Shack with my sister, the guy who took our order told us we were beautiful, the food was delicious, and then we browsed the stores in Times Square. It was all very enjoyable, even despite the fact that I was slightly underwhelmed with the actual place (probably because that’s where the bus station was, so I already saw it that evening). I don’t know, I definitely expected more from one of the most famous sights on Earth. Oh well. It was still a cool experience.
Moving on, the next day, we went to Coney Island for the Mermaid Parade. We got there at 11 a.m., a good two hours before it actually started, to ensure that we’d get awesome spots. And we did. We were at the very start of the parade route, right up against the metal barriers. It was awesome, and we spent the next two hours watching people slowly fill in around us.
Well, about five minutes before it began, the woman next to me suddenly got very close. She put her hand on the barrier directly next to mine and moved over toward me until our shoulders were touching.
Being that she was a tough, Hispanic New Yorker there with her small daughter, I found this a little odd. She, of all people, did not want to be body-to-body with a complete stranger. So then why on Earth had she gotten so close to me?
A very strong push against my bum revealed the answer.
I turned my head to look behind me, and there I saw the culprits: three Chinese women — a daughter, mother, and grandma — all trying to move their way to the front so that their very short selves could see the not very tall parade.
I then knew why the woman next to me had gotten so close: She didn’t want those three ladies squeezing in there and taking her child’s spot. Not wanting the same thing, I also stood my ground, firmly planting my feet to help ward off the nuisances.
I knew exactly what was gonna happen, thanks to many similar experiences in Disney World. After a few minutes of unsuccessfully (and annoyingly) trying to move to the front, they’d simply give up, use their tiptoes, and hold their iPads obnoxiously high in the air so they could still get some “really awesome” pictures.
Just use your phones, you dweebs.
But anyway, that’s exactly what they did. They stopped, the parade started, and the iPads went up — except these ladies were having trouble holding them steady.
The natural solution? Use the tall girl in front to help you hold your camera in place! Duh!
Literally, I could’ve killed those people.
For a good hour, they would take turns resting their forearms against my back, holding their iPad camera lenses just above my head so they could get a perfectly clear shot of all that was going on. Cause that’s totally acceptable crowd behavior, right?
At first, I wanted to punt all three of them across the street to the crowd on the other side, that way those people could deal with them. But, being that I know there’s really no concept of personal space in their society — and also that I’m just generally kind — I resisted the urge and let it slide. It actually made me laugh after awhile, because stuff like that just doesn’t happen unless it’s to me.
Eventually, 2 o’clock rolled around, and the woman next to me decided to take her child to the beach. And let me tell you, before they even could step out of their spot, the grandma in the group behind me had already jumped right in. She was a maniac. Elvis Presley might as well have been rising from the dead right in front of us, that’s how intense she was.
Well, once the leaving New Yorker pushed her stroller away, the rest of the group followed, and I was happy to be relieved of my tripod duties.
Until I turned into a jungle gym, of course.
Literally, the grandma to my right WOULD NOT STOP CLIMBING ON ME. Trying to get more pictures, she would push into my side, rest her elbow on my hip bone, step her feet on top of mine, pull herself onto her toes with my forearm. Like, for real???
I mean, like I said before, I know there’s a much smaller concept of personal space in Asia, and I also know that this woman was very, very short. But she needs to learn how to properly behave as a guest in the West before someone takes her tiny little butt and launches it into next year. Literally, she’s gonna get pummeled, and it’s not gonna be pretty.
Should I have moved for them? I don’t know. Maybe. But I don’t really care. If they wanted a spot where they were able to see, they should have gotten there two hours before like everyone else. But don’t show up five minutes before an event and expect to just wiggle your way through the crowd. That’s very unfair.
But eventually I couldn’t take it anymore, and we left to go get hotdogs. And that is all for now. The adventure will continue next time with the very short recounting of the Sanders man.