Last week I wrote a little ditty about Stroller Etiquette. Remember that? I’ve never been a mom in the suburbs, I have no idea at all how strollering in the ‘burbs works. It seems to be popular opinion is that since strollers aren’t terribly much of a necessity outside of big cities, stroller-wielding mamas aren’t necessarily needing any special consideration. That makes total sense to me.
I’ve sort of been letting it ruminate in my rumination parts this week, because I personally am of two minds here: First, strollers are a pain. They take up all this space! They’re a total menace! But also: You basically have to have a stroller in NYC if you have kids (unless you have a driver and/or take a lot of cabs), and so I am always aware of the fact that while I have as much right to be on the streets with my stroller as anybody else, I’m also totally an irritation and should take up as little space as possible.
But today, something happened that made me rethink all this.
I was standing in the M&M store in Times Square waiting for my mom to buy her traditional turquoise M&Ms (traditions are important, you know, as are turquoise M&Ms). Huck was in his umbrella stroller and we were holding down the fort downstairs and eating snacks and playing This Little Piggy while important turquoise Peanut M&M transactions went on upstairs. We were located to the right of an exit, tucked in the corner, as out of the way as we could get.
A young man pushing his kid in a stroller walked up behind me, stood there for a minute, and then tapped on my shoulder. When I looked to see what he wanted, he gestured toward the door and said, “Open it for me?” I hopped-to, feeling a little embarrassed it hadn’t occurred to me to open the door for him and other stroller pushers already, but also feeling sort of surprised.
Because I am so sheepish about getting in people’s way with my clumsy stroller, it never occurred to me that I could ask someone to get the door for me. Can I do that? I’ve gotten pretty good at the one armed door open/bum propping/backward scooching technique and I don’t really need to have doors opened for me, but maybe that’s not the point?
Either way, I’ll feel a little less embarrassed for merely existing with my stroller from now on. So, thanks for that, random stranger guy with the stroller! Thanks for being a pal! Stroll on!