Rant: Umbrella Etiquette

Even though May is only supposed to bring flowers, so far, this month has been just as rainy as its predecessor. Given the forecast for the next several days, and at the request of some of our Twitter friends (ahem….@Shawn_Rusich), we’ve decided to give you some pointers to help you brush up your umbrella etiquette.

Obviously, the biggest grievances when it comes to umbrellas occur on the sidewalk. As we’ve mentioned before, proper sidewalk etiquette is crucial when living in the city, and this becomes quite apparent when it’s raining. People with poor umbrella etiquette really grind our gears.
When passing someone on the sidewalk with your umbrella open, you need to have some sense of spatial relations. Just because you aren’t bumping into someone next to you doesn’t mean your umbrella isn’t. 
Obviously, avoid swatting your passing neighbour in the head with your umbrella. Be courteous, and lift yours as you go by. 
Of course, if that person is much taller than you, you should let them lift theirs first to avoid poking them in the face. Or, tip yours to the side, away from them. Nothing is worse than a prickly, wet umbrella in the eye. 
 This is not the way to pass people with an umbrella in hand.
When racing to get indoors out of the rain, you must close your umbrella just before you go through the door. Don’t bring an open, dripping umbrella inside. Other people coming in behind you will be equally eager to get inside, so chop chop – close that brolly quickly and hustle inside. 
Once you are inside, take care to not leave a dangerous, dripping wet trail of water all over the floor. Leave your umbrella at the front door, ideally in handy umbrella stand. If you are hosting and it’s raining, invest in said handy umbrella stand. Your guests (and floors) will thank you. 
When choosing an umbrella, pick something fun and cheery. Why contribute to the dreary rain with a boring black umbrella? Plaid, polka dot, striped, bright yellow, or printed with palm leaves – if your umbrella is fun, maybe your fellow brolly carriers will forgive your other (worse) umbrella transgressions.
And, finally, if you can’t follow any of the above etiquette tips, perhaps it’s best you leave the umbrella at home and invest in a good rain jacket. Embrace the wet and stop annoying people. 
Any umbrella etiquette tips that we missed? Tweet us @rockitpromo

Rant: Bad Sidewalk Walkers (BSW)

We are always prompt and on time for all appointments, but some days, our hair just doesn’t cooperate and we leave the house 10 minutes later than we should have. Power walking is a way to make up for lost time, and when we’re hustling, we need people on the sidewalk to work with our hustle.

Nothing is more grating than being in a hurry when people are slow-walking in front of you. Walking on the sidewalk should be like driving – slow people in the far right lane, leaving room for faster walkers to pass on the left. The middle lane can be used by people coming in both directions to pass. Simple, right? It should be, but nearly everyone we’ve talked to shares our rant about Bad Sidewalk Walkers (BSW).
See the clear middle lane? Perfect!

Walking with your BFF or boyfriend? Yes, it’s sweet to walk hand-in-hand (or arm-in-arm), but you need to break up the lovefest when walking by people coming in the other direction. Be polite and stay on your half. You can hold hands again when you’re alone on the sidewalk.

When you are looking for a store, restaurant or staring at something amazing/creepy/weird on the streets of Toronto, please, stand off to the side, BSW. People walking behind you can’t read your mind and know that you’re about to pull an about-face to run back and check out those cute shoes in the window. Again, like driving. You would never just stop and sit in the middle of Yonge Street, would you? If you would, you’re an idiot.

On your cell texting or chatting and strutting down the street? Keep your wits about you. Glance up and see what’s going on occasionally. You have just as much of a responsibility not to run into someone walking as they do not to run into you. Then you also won’t risk running into a streetlamp or errant garbage can (which is embarrassing, not to mention painful), BSW.

BSW with iPods similarly need to be aware of their surroundings. Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros are, well, magnetic to listen to. But that doesn’t mean you can zone out with a slow saunter, oblivious to everyone else walking around you.

We are all for a low-key Sunday amble. But save it for a leafy trail in High Park.