The Great Elevator Escape

It would appear that I do not need to look very far for material for my blog. I am a walking magnet of possibilities! After pleasantly reminiscing about the night the HAZMAT crew showed up at my apartment complex in my last blog entry, I came to work this morning and promptly got stuck in the elevator.

We were making a stop at the 5th floor for two other folks in the elevator before heading up to my floor on 10, but we never made it to 5. The doors just didn’t open. We pressed the “open door” button, and no luck. We pressed the level 6 button, and we didn’t budge. So, we pressed the “call for help” button, and when the operator said, “Hello?” We said we were stuck, and she put us on hold. What?!? I’m on hold listening to “elevator” music in an elevator. I found this very ironic.

After a few minutes of music, the operator hung up on us, and we stood there wondering what would happen next. Should we call her back? Should we shout for help? Should we just have a good laugh at our predicament and then decide what to do?

We were in the process of choosing option #3 – laughing – when a building maintenance man called to us, “Hello? Where are you?”

Again, the irony was too much, “We’re in the elevator.” Where do you think we are?

He replied, “Which floor?” Ha! We don’t know. We’re stuck. Maybe we made it to 5? Maybe we’re stuck between floors 4 and 5?

This maintenance man – I’m going to call him Mr. Bumbling – oscillated between asking questions and then walking away; sometimes he walked away in the middle of our answers.

At one point in this “question/walk away” game, he informed us that he had called an “elevator guy” to come help.

“How long will that take?” No answer. He had walked away again.

To make a long story short, Mr. Bumbling and “elevator guy” managed to free the three of us 40 minutes later, and here are a few tips I learned from my ordeal:

  1. If you leave the office to get food (like a yogurt or salad or something that requires utensils), pick up plastic utensils just in case. The woman in the elevator with me could have been eating her yogurt while we were stuck if she had only been prepared!
  2. It might be time to invest in a smart phone. You never know when you might need it to post real-time updates on Facebook about being stuck in an elevator. And if you have a copy of the Angry Birds game, even better!
  3. Broom handles can be used to get you unstuck. It seems a little scary, and I don’t necessarily recommend it, but I’m out now and the broom is still intact.
  4. If the elevator says, “Inspection up to date,” do not believe everything you read.
  5. If you call your office to inform them you will be late because you are stuck in the elevator, they might email the entire office with “Megan M is stuck in the elevator and hopes to be out soon.” While it was slightly embarrassing, I have never been greeted so warmly upon arriving at work!

By the way, we were on floor 5 the entire time – the elevator doors just didn’t want to open.

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