Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Genteel Geoff Says

Modern life is fraught with social dilemmas and quandaries. Today we are faced with more vexing questions than simply when is it appropriate to wear white and what fork do I eat my salad with. To help you navigate politely through life's perplexing problems, we have enlisted the help of mannerly polite-ician, Genteel Geoff, to answer your questions. If you have a question for Genteel Geoff, email him at

Dear Genteel Geoff,

I was eating my pizza at the top of the subway stairs the other day around 5:00 and these people kept giving me dirty looks when they tried to get past me. What should I have responded to these rude assholes?

Peggy Isabel Grant

Dear PIG,

Only the homeless and pigeons should be eating on our city's sidewalks. New York City is host to many of the finest brasseries on the planet and they all provide beautiful surroundings and relaxing accommodations designed to complement the carte du jour. My assistant informs me of the existence of pizza parlors where the diners order at a counter and take their food back to a table on their own. If they exist near my Park Avenue home they are well hidden as I have never spotted one, however, I imagine they might be a bit of a lark when one chooses to "slum it". Regardless of why one would choose to dine in such a place, what should be pointed out is the presence of tables where you should have eaten your pizza. If the parlor was crowded, you should have asked your companion to announce your arrival to the Maitre d' before purchasing your super.

Why you would choose to eat your supper while standing on a sidewalk is beyond me, however, if this decision was reached out of necessity, why would you choose the top of a busy stairwell to root your rotund rump? Perhaps, due to lack of grace and manners, you simply choose to ignore the fundamentals of an entry way. Let me explain how these areas operate; people enter and exit through them as they go about their business. Sounds simple does it not, PIG? When an obstacle, such as yourself, blocks an entry way, the entire system, which for a New York City subway entrance can quickly add up to hundreds of people, is forced to reroute and faced with unnecessary delays and inconveniences.

In the future, PIG, if you must enjoy your culinary delights on a public thoroughfare, please have the common decency to stand clear of any doorways, stairwells, or entryways. You will be spared from having to deal with unwanted looks and the general public going about their business won't be subjected to the unavoidable scene of you masticating your meal.

Remember, manners are the glue that hold society together.
Genteel Geoff


  1. Geoff, why are you always answering questions about the subway? Why is it so hard for your readers to master this seemingly simple task?

    I can't imagine what these people would do with a car.


  2. \kelly10:51 AM

  3. Genteel Geoff11:06 AM

    Dear JDizzle, New York City is a heavily populated area so it stands to reason, that we have more simpletons per capita then other cities.

    Dear Kelly, Yes, mmmm indeed. Just keep your slice at the table.

  4. Seriously. I hate when people are finishing up a phone call on the subway steps. Don't get on the steps til you're done with whatever you're doing!

  5. I also hate: 1) those guys who hand out the free newspapers at the Astor Place subway station by blocking the stairs, and 2) people who decide to turn around halfway down and go back up, thereby blocking everybody else's way.

  6. Thanks for the clarification Geoff. Now i understand. maybe they should make a "smart people only" train.