Umbrella2 3-19-2013

Umbrella Policy

A guide to the etiquette of carrying an umbrella

As part two in our ongoing quest for civility, we have set our sights on umbrella etiquette, an area in which many urbanites lack sophistication. While April showers do indeed bring May flowers, they also bring a host of complex questions about the proper handling and storage of these awkward rainy day essentials. So take note, for we have collected important advice to help you negotiate the rain with the dexterity and sophistication of Gene Kelly.


#1 – Ensure your equipment is in tip-top shape: Not only is it unbecoming to tote around a mangled umbrella with exposed tips, it is downright dangerous for those who come too close. Especially in New York City, where personal space is at a premium. And when you haphazardly grab an umbrella from the closet in the morning, make sure it is standard-sized; a satellite-sized golf umbrella belongs on the links, not on a crowded sidewalk, gents.


#2 – Cede the way: When you hit the streets, respectfully raise your umbrella when you pass those of an equal height to prevent a collision. It may feel as though you are engaged in a game of sidewalk chicken, but if you must be the bigger person, so be it. With this sense of safety in mind, also be mindful not to swing an umbrella or tuck it into the crook of your arm. Enticing though it may be to do so, the sharp point on the top of the umbrella isn’t something the chap behind you will enjoy running into.


#3 – The seat next to you: While commuting, don’t be the guy who cavalierly rests his soggy umbrella beside him.  Doing so will not only soak the seat, but make it unwelcoming for the poor fellow whose destiny is that seat. Place it neatly in between your legs or if it’s compact, put it in a plastic bag on the floor.


#4 – Final Destination: When you arrive at your destination, step aside to shake off your umbrella prior to entering the doorway. Then check around for an umbrella holder or simply wrap it up and stow it neatly on the floor beneath your desk or in a closet. It is poor form to leave an open umbrella inverted on the floor.


We hope this list is fresh in your mind the next time the five-day calls for showers.

In the interim, tell us, what did we miss?

TAGS: april showers | Etiquette | gene kelly | rain | sidewalk chicken | Umbrella

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