The old lady just wouldn’t get out of the way. She was riding the escalator in front of me and just wouldn’t step to the side or walk up. She was just out for a jolly morning ride on the upward automatic stairs. It was infuriating. I excused myself in an attempt to pass, which seemed to wake her from her old lady funk. Instead of stepping aside so I could pass and make the morning train, she decided that she would now start walking up the escalator. She was still blocking my way. The train was arriving in the station and I could not for the life of me get around this little old lady.
When we finally arrived at the top of the escalator she still managed to box me out and I had to excuse myself again, as decency and politeness dictates, to squeeze around her on her left side. I hustled past her and ran toward the waiting train, which promptly shut its doors right in my damn face and took off. I looked back behind me to see where the old lady was and she was comfortably boarding her train going in the opposite direction as mine. I cursed.
Now I was going to be late for work. All thanks to the little old lady that couldn’t. But then I thought it wasn’t really her fault after all. It was my fault for dragging my butt so slowly from my bed and standing in my shower like a zombie. I just let the minutes and seconds fly away as I sat on the couch to catch the weather and smoke a cigarette instead of hurrying to put on my shoes. I could have just grabbed my coat and hat and headed out the door without knowing the weather or smoking.
So ultimately if I had left when I should have I wouldn’t have been train blocked by this little old lady in a blue winter coat and head scarf. I would have made the earlier train and not feel so stressed about being a little late to work. Then a little voice in my head said a familiar phrase, one that I’m sure we’re all used to: “Everything happens for a reason”. I cringed. This phrase makes me nuts.
Of course everything happens for a reason, everything happens as a result of Cause and Effect. Everything moves forward in a linear flow chart of decisions and actions, constantly. Ceaselessly. I think the only time this flow chart pauses is while we’re sleeping, but even then we’re sleeping as a result of the activities taken previously. So it’s clear that everything does happen for a reason. However, I think most people tend to be less clinical about it and more often are considering the philosophical aspects of this statement.
This little old lady was placed in my path to make me late for work as part of a divine plan. A plan so mysterious and complex I cannot fathom its details. It’s the story of my life, as written by God, who is working me toward some greater goal as determined by His providence and reason. I can’t imagine why this little old blue coated lady would be in my morning path, but because I’m human, there must be a greater, more holy, a more inspired reason. It simply cannot be because I was lazy. It must be something more.
It is just too perfectly timed, this old lady in my path, just as the train arrives and I can’t get around her. That’s just too coincidental for my taste. Why does the universe seem to operate this way? Why do we spill something on our favorite shirt or pants right before the big meeting or interview? Why do we always seem to get in the slow lane of traffic? Why are the most wonderful moments in our lives usually accompanied by the most terrible gas pains?
I can hardly believe all these things just happen out of the randomness of the universe. It just doesn’t seem right or logical that a little old lady left her house and walked to the train station without the intention of making me miss my train while she makes hers because I forced her to move a little faster than she was. She would have missed her own train if I hadn’t been trying to get past her. Perhaps I was the randomness in her universe and got her to someplace she needed to be ahead of schedule which then brought her some good fortune at the expense of mine?
The mind does too many jumping jacks and leapfrogging all over this concept. It’s just so random and without sense.