On a ride in one, I thought about the unique behaviour we people act out every time we take the elevator.
It made me laugh because I thought of all the elevators in the world at the moment of my ride (have I nothing else to think of???) and all those people arranged neatly, looking away from each other – mainly in the ceiling, towards the confining walls, or in their feet – motionless, tense, holding mightily all possible urges, their breath, or a piece of donut, until the ride is over.
When they can go free at last.
Free to scratch their itch.
To roll their eyes judgmentally.
To sneeze or jerk nervously.
To sigh and puff.
To swallow their donut.
The stuff the human body does daily is unbelievable, so I’ll stop there.
In other words, the elevator pressures us – with an invisible ethical bar – to hold all our urges, twitches, and all the weirdness our body does daily, in a strangely powerful way.
I found this thought to be funny, so I smiled – a totally unacceptable thing to do in an elevator.
Fun aside, have you ever seen people staring at each other in a lift or dancing for no reason, or scratching or touching inappropriately, or even swallowing, chewing, or talking to themselves?
Everything stops once you enter the lift – breathing, chewing, thinking.
Our programming gets hacked and our functions black out in hibernation.
And by that, I don’t mean we snooze or take a cat nap.
The tension each passenger discharges is so dense that you can cut it with a knife, spread it on a piece of bread and poison yourself with the first bite.
It’s like a special, unwritten law of the elevators – the code of the elevators!
The ten commandments of thy Lift.
1. Thou shalt not have no other Gods before me… – meaning, don’t get religiously weird, fanatical or extreme and scare the rest of the passengers.
2. Thou shalt not make any grave image unto me… – meaning, don’t hurt me and you won’t get hurt (and what with riding in the same elevator, it can get quite rough for everybody).
3. Thou shalt not kill… – self-explanatory (although, it’s a perfect scene for a CSI episode: massacred people in an elevator, who was the killer, why did he do it, and how did he escape?)
4. Thou shalt not commit adultery… – again, self-explanatory (although, it would be a perfect scene for a porno movie: without being interested in anything other than, how long is the ride going to be?)
And all the way to 10.
You see where I’m going.
Anyway, that elevator ride made me think that, if we saw our lives as an elevator ride with all its invisible moral codes, perhaps we would have behaved differently.
And, murderers (like those who killed hundreds of children in Syria), rapists (pretty much in any war-torn country), thieves, and all little, conniving, lying, self-obsessed, and short-sighted people, perhaps, would have behaved otherwise.
Unfortunately, the world isn’t an elevator.
At least people don’t see it that way – those, who think and, sometimes, do get away with their nasty business.
It’s not the analogy of the world with an elevator that I find good, in fact – it’s terrible.
It’s the fact that the elevator reminded me that each and everyone’s actions are bound to affect another human being.
With stress on the negative actions.
The butterfly effect, whose ripples can be traced easily when the compound is so limited, just like in an elevator.