As with any big-crowd situation, don't make eye contact. The moment you do this you have lost. Head down, stick to a clearly defined course. 95% of the time people will get out of your way. 5% of the time you'll bump into them because they were doing the same thing. It's a small price to pay.
This might, by the way, sound tremendously antisocial, but given that people en masse appear determined to be just that, all you're doing is joining in and ensuring that you don't get bumped into the gutter.
I found the best way to get across Liverpool Street station when I worked for the Company of Doom was to stare fixedly and obviously at the level above as I walked along, as if I were intent on looking at a particular person I might or might not recognize. It worked perfectly.
I also find that FEROCIOUS ANGRY eye contact gets people to move as well, or to stay away. I keep entire crowds at the other end of the platform at Moorgate station in the morning by standing midway down the platform and glaring strongly in the direction of people who might want to walk up. They almost always stop about 30 feet away from me, and then I have the benefit of getting the one seat that's always left in the front half of the train when it arrives.
I've seen some research about moving through crowds - and the no-eye-contact thing was recommended - focus on where you are going and everyone moves out of the way. Unfortunately Mrs S is a little too short/timid to achieve this, but she's always impressed (even though she knows the trick) when the crowds part in front of me and she can follow!
's original situation, if there's the slightest chance I might be expected to step into the gutter, I stop dead and make them walk round me.
I do that, too! If bracing and marching won't help, stopping works very well. I also Just Stop when stuck in what can otherwise turn into a dance. It works well, unless the other has the same trick - that leads to standing close enough to kiss a stranger, and I think I need more in common with a stranger than crowd management to want to kiss them. It's not a bad start, mind ...
In ruudboy's original situation, if there's the slightest chance I might be expected to step into the gutter, I stop dead and make them walk round me.
Oh I do that too. I'm too short for the hard stare thing to really work.
2008-01-25 03:46 pm (UTC)
I've seen some research about moving through crowds - and the no-eye-contact thing was recommended - focus on where you are going and everyone moves out of the way.
I've been thinking about this. I wonder if it's because once you make eye contact then both people's brains start trying to deal with the social contact, and so get distracted from the manouevring task.
I do that, only head up, targeting on where I'm heading. I do not duck out of people's way (where there is space for 2 people), instead I brace. Oh, and if I am totally blocked in, I find a "You're in the way" in mild to threatening monotone both effective and personally rewarding.
I like it (don't really like it) when you attempt to move to get around a group of people in a fairly tight space who are chatting or something, and just as you're about to get past them they decide "oh, we are blocking the pavement/entrance we should stop doing so" so you have to IMMEDIATELY change course or bump into them.
That's well annoying. What's also annoying is being stuck behind a gaggle of shrieking harpies shuffling along the corridor at the speed of zombie stroke victims. OUTTA MY WAY BITCH!
Go up quietly behind one of them and shout "EXCUSE ME" right in their ear.
I don't speak in a high enough squeal which is the communication used by fashion students.
PS - I hate my job and everyone in the building.
I suggest a scythe. I doubt you'd need to remove more than one head.
Yes, a scythe. I wonder which high street retailer can sort me out?
Have a word with Kate Moss, and they could be in Top Shop within a week.
john lewis has EVERYTHING ;)
Dude, the boy fashionistas (would that be fashionistos?) do it too!
It's worse in a swimming pool.
Yes, I know it's the slow lane, but you shouldn't be overtaken by My Dead Tortoise!
This made me LOL :) For real!
If I make the mistake of going to work at the same time that the local bratlings are being taken to school by mummy I may as well walk in the road all the way. Only then I'd be run over by their 4x4 cvnt mobiles.
What I'm doing at the moment (which will probably get me killed) is waiting to see if people are going to make any effort to move and if they don't they are getting either the full force of my elbow or my shoulder or whatever I am carrying (if it's hard), because frankly the selfish fvckers need to be taught.
If you've definitely decided you don't want to be the one to move just stop in your tracks. They do get out of your way then.
I must admit I've occasionally given somebody an elbow.
One day I swear I'm going to yell at them: Would you like me to give up my job and move to another city until you're quite finished with this pavement?
My answer was scientific, based on what's happened every time ever.
I get angsty with groups of people occupying the whole of the pavement, but I try not to on the basis of the handful of times I've suddenly realised I'm doing something equally stupid myself. I remember a meeting for a Tube Walk a while ago where we were all stood around in a big bunch blocking the passage and someone tried to get past and it was only then I twigged, and I felt quite stupid, and I try and remember that when someone's doing it to me. Well, okay, unless I'm hungry, when all bets are off.
My answer is realistic, rather than idealistic.
I find a great big (fake or otherwise) 'HHHHHRRRRRRRNNNNNK' then wiping the 'snot' along my arm in a big gesture usually clears me a passage through the trickiest of crowds.
Alas it's not so practical when carrying bags of shopping in each hand. Then a mere wild-eyed stare/grin combo will have to suffice.
The 1 person should wait to see whether the x people fall out of line. If it looks like they are not going to, the 1 person should position themselves in the middle of the oncoming x people and stand still, forcing the x people to route around them.