The Elevator

Just like clockwork, the overweight indicator for Number Seven came on. It was stuck halfway between the third and fourth floors. I hit the intercom and adopted my best professional voice. “Hello, is anyone there?”

“Yeah, we’re in here. The elevator’s stuck.”

“I know. How many people are in there?”

“Ummm … ten.”

“That elevator is only rated for eight. It must be pretty crowded. I’ll get Steve to manually lower it back to three. Just hang tight, you’ll be out soon.”

I left the receiver open so I could hear if something went wrong. Of course their tinny little voices all sounded alike through the ancient speaker system.


“Perfect. Just perfect.”

“Did you tell him we’re overloaded?”

“Yes, he knows.”

“Thursday night.”

“This can’t be happening!”

“And the lights are flickering?”

“Don’t worry, it’ll be okay.”

“No, but it doesn’t matter.”


“Keep away from me!”

“I can’t. There’s too many people in here.”

“So you’re an elevator expert now?”

“Hey, something touched my leg. Eew gross! What’s wrong, lady?”

“Have you got the emergency phone?”


“It’s time!”

“Time for … aaugh!”


“I don’t care. Just keep away from me.”

“What is this stuff? Trevor, help me up.”

“But he doesn’t know about the light!”

“I can’t keep away from you!”

“Ugh! What’s on your hands?”


“He does now! Stay calm, mother.”

“Right up front if you can.”

“Did you try the doors?”

“Change of plans. Trevor, grab her!”

“Grab who?”

“You just touched me!”

“What’s he saying?”

“Bear down!”

“No I didn’t! It was that pervy guy behind you.”

“Of course I tried the doors.”


“Don’t bring me into this!”

“Grrrah! Aaaaugh!”

“How soon until we get out?”

“What about the escape hatch?”

“Now PUSH!”

“Do I look that tall, mother?”

“You touched me!”

“She’ll be eating out of my pants if this works.”



“Ow! What’s your problem, lady?”

“Aaaagh! Owwwww!”

“One more!”

“What’s that smell? I’m going to barf!”

“Is that blood? Get me out of here!”

“Stop shouting in my ear!”

“Here lady, get behind me.”



“So you can grope me in the corner?”

“Thanks, Sid.”


“I have a meeting at 1:00.”

“No! So you can get away from the blood.”

“Okay. Thank you.”


“Hi there, cutie!”

“Don’t come near me, pervert!”

“I’m the store detective!”

“Get me out of here! I’ll pay you!”

“What the hell’s going on? What was that bump?”

“Like I haven’t heard that before.”


“Cut me some slack, lady.”

“Hey Don, it’s Steve! I got her open! Yuck; wet clean-up needed in Elevator Seven.”


Later Steve and I compared notes. He let eleven out: a couple of busiensessmen, one still on his cell phone; Pete Simmons, the store dick; two nervous shopper ladies, a middle-aged guy and his whiny mother; two college kids, one covered in blood; and a formerly pregnant lady with her newborn daughter. I won the bet.