Common Sense rules of Vancouver #0003 – Umbrella Etiquette

Look to the sky! Oh thank heavens, the fall-winter-spring rains are upon us once more! Now is that wondrous time of the year when we look back at summer and think of all the beaches left unvisited, Popsicles left unlicked, and horses left unridden. Instead of lounging on the art gallery steps, we scurry from one destination to the other, huddled inside our womblike hoodies or shrugging our shoulders vainly against the rain if we must take it on our heads.

And then, of course, we have the umbrella – scourge of decent folk and evaporator of all things common sensical….



Oh somewhat-sheltered denizens of Vancouver, why must you believe that your umbrella is a shield from both the rain and common decency?

How many times, oh mostly-dry Vancouverites, must you whack people in the face with the points of your umbrella? Or fail to yield the right of way in narrow places? Or carry it inside buildings, doors, and the Skytrain platform only to then shake it off?

Dear, sweet Vancouverites, when you use your umbrella, please keep your head up. There are people all around you that don’t deserve to get smacked, smushed, or smeared against wet downtown walls because of your blissfully apathetic walk down the street.

So, Common Sense Rule of Vancouver #0003 reads as follows:

Thou shalt not, while using an umbrella, fail to yield the right of way to those who are umbrella-less. Thou shalt not inadvertently gouge the eye of your fellow man or woman with the moist tips of your umbrella, and thou shalt not carry a gigantic golf umbrella on a city street.

Thou shalt, instead, think of the umbrella as an extension of your body. If thou wouldst not touch someones eyes, face, back or top of the head with thine hand, perhaps thou shouldn’t do it with thine umbrella. Also don’t push them.

Following said rule entitles you to the use of the coveted title: Reasonable Person

Go back and read rule #0002

3 Comments so far

  1. John Bollwitt (unregistered) on September 20th, 2006 @ 6:01 pm

    What about those who walk with an umbrella with it tilted forward all the while staring at the pavement in front of them, not being able to see what the hell is coming in the other direction? Thou shouldn’t do that crap either.


  2. Jonathon Narvey (unregistered) on September 20th, 2006 @ 6:20 pm

    Slightly off topic, if you happen to find a lost umbrella anywhere in the Robson and Granville area this winter, please contact me. There’s a very good chance that its mine.

    I lost five last year.


  3. Rebecca (unregistered) on September 21st, 2006 @ 12:02 pm

    umbrellas open walking under scaffolding – gotta love it.



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