Fuck umbrellas. Seriously.

So it's been raining the past couple of days here in LA. Normally, I like the rain. Not a huge fan of walking around while it is actually raining, but I like the weather in general. But I can't stand people and their damn umbrellas.

It seems like such a strange thing to get worked up about. In fact, I only know of one other person who shares these feelings (though I'm sure there are others). But she agrees... Umbrellas suck.

Now, I'm not just bitching for the sake of bitching; I have actual, tangible reasons for why I feel this way.

First and foremost is that they significantly impact the normal flow of foot traffic. A normal umbrella extends the amount of space each person takes up by a radius of eight or so inches (give or take a couple, depending on the original size of the person). So now, when people are walking, it's much harder to move through foot traffic, because there are all these damn umbrellas in the way.

And, with all this extra space being taken up, people tend to move slower too. So not only is it harder to move around due to the amount of space each person takes up, they also move slower, thus FURTHER impeding the normal flow of foot traffic. Or you can further compound the problem by trying to cram as many people under one umbrella as possible, thus turning your umbrella group into a clusterfuck of slow moving morons.

Another facet of the problem is that people don't generally walk around with things like umbrellas in their hands. We, as a culture, aren't used to this; it's not part of our natural way of walking. When I was in martial arts, the key thing to being able to handle any of the demo weapons was to make it an extension of yourself. But nobody does that with their umbrellas. They're just walking around, unable to wield this bulky thing sensibly.

And what's worse is that the edges of the umbrella are ARMED WITH FUCKING SPIKES! So not only is it hard to move past this slow-moving herd of people senselessly wielding umbrellas, but if I even think about it, I get poked in the eye! Everybody holds their umbrellas just above eye level, which means their spikes are right around the eye level of other people!

I suppose you could try to argue that despite these shortcomings, the inherent utility of an umbrella makes up for it. But you'd be wrong. So wrong.

See, umbrellas don't keep you all that dry. Rain often falls at (or rather, is blown at) an angle; so while your umbrella might be keeping your head somewhat dry, your body is still getting hit.

"But Jeremy," the umbrella defenders cry out, "that's the point! We don't want our heads to get wet!"

To which I reach over, and pull their damn hoods onto their heads. Unless they're one of the MANY people who wear a hood, and STILL use an umbrella!

There's pretty much nothing useful that an umbrella accomplishes that can't be better accomplished by a waterproof jacket. And a jacket has the added bonuses of:

1) Keeping you warm.
2) Keeping your body dry.
3) Keeping your personal impact on the walking area intact.
4) Not poking me in the damn eye!

In heavy rain, we can make an exception. But this is LA, not Seattle. We don't get heavy rain. We get a fine mist, and cloudy skies. So put that shit away, because I might just break the next one that pokes me in the eye.

In conclusion, fuck umbrellas.


Anonymous said...

excuse me. rain jackets are FRUMPY as all hell. and pulling a hood over your head messes up your hair. you will lose this battle as well, jeremy.

i do agree with you on the issue of umbrellas poking people, and people moving slowly with them. but that's because people on campus move like slow ass cattle anyway.

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