(Some may call it sniffling, but when they are sitting nearby and not “dealing with it”, you get the privilege to call it what you want.)
As I sometimes make my way into Panera to allow me to think I have a place to be besides working out of the home, I know I can’t always get my “normal” seat. Often, I (I am a creature of habit with a small, limited ability to be flexible when necessary) can choose another seat and be completely happy with the new seat and view of the Panera parking lot. I function like normal, and accomplish most of what I would normally accomplish. Unless, of course, I am forced to deal with some of the possible negatives that may somehow find me in my “new” seat.
Today, I was dealing with a “snorter”. She is sitting right in the table behind me. She has her laptop out as well. She in probably doing it unconsciously, but I sure hear it. If she were one of my kids, I would say, “Please blow your nose.” Since she is a complete stranger, I try to listen to the background music and train my brain to integrate the snort into the music. In all other ways, she seems to be a perfect cube/corner-of-the-restaurant mate. Do I need to mention my wife is not a snorter? My wife clearly does not have the long-snort or short-snort skills of the person behind me. She knows how to use a tissue. In fact, my wife and many others might consider it somewhat rude to snort, snort and then snort some more as they avoid the use of paper products that might remove the urge or need to maintain their “snortiness”. Did I mention she is still sitting behind me as I write this and she arrived just after I did?
I believe I just heard her commiserating with another customer with her difficulty in finding napkins. If I were a nicer person, I might delete this whole posting out of guilt. If the snorting would have stopped AFTER her tissue/napkin quest, the guilt may have been heavy enough to prevent the clicking of the eventual “Publish” button. As the snort frequency increases and my brain is becoming more challenged trying to integrate the snorts into the background music/lyrics, I believe my work here is done. In the writing, I have not banished impolite noises from my future. I have, however, been provided an outlet and an opportunity to be double-thankful for my wife. Maybe I will invite her along next time so I can talk over the snorters rather than listen to them!