Yeas: elevated above the rest

Leslie Arntz

There are two kinds of students here at Kent State. Yes, only two. Throw away your preconceived notions of jocks, geeks, preps, punks and losers. The world is much simpler than that. Our student body is divided into those who do hold the elevator for you and those who do not.

For the sake of simplicity, they will be referred to as Yeas and Nays, respectively. (On a side note: “Yea” is pronounced “yay,” as in rhyming with “hay.” “Yeah” is what Lil’ Jon abuses in his music.) There is no in-between, no gray area in this spectrum.

Sure, there are those who occasionally hold that elevator door open for the acquaintance and more often for the friend, but the true test of a Yea is consistency. Either you do or you don’t. If sometimes you don’t, then obviously you don’t qualify for the group that always does.

Regardless of the circumstances, the Yea will wait. Even whilst facing the impending doom of a rabid animal, alien or evil spirit, he will leave that door open until you pass safely through. Yeas also tend to be the ones who hold the door at the entrance of a building, the gentlemen allowing the ladies to pass first. They tend to be the ones who step into the bank of snow on either side of the narrow sidewalk professing their excuses, so as to let one by.

No matter how much of a rush a Yea is in, he will spare the two seconds it takes for someone to walk/jog over. For those on the receiving end of this kindness, the walk/jog is generally all the thanks given to the Yea, but occasionally the recipient will utter something more than “fourth floor.”

As to why Nays are Nays is a much disputed subject. Have they always been Nays or are they simply corrupted Yeas, fallen from grace? Be they the conscious Nays, hitting the “close door” button frantically, or the oblivious Nays, staring at the booger on the wall as the door closes in your face, a Nay they remain. Direct, piercing eye contact seems to be the only way to persuade one to shoot his hand out to stop the closing doors. 

The fact of the matter is that every one of us was conceived as a Nay. Not everyone will stay one. Each individual needs to be offered the opportunity to become a born-again Yea — for those are the only kind. Somewhere along the winding path of the current Yea’s life, he or she encountered someone who instilled the notion of chivalry.

On the great list of manners, after “please” and “thank you,” is the concept of common courtesy. There is no medal awarded at an annual banquet for exercising this model of behavior, no plaque or certificate either.

Sometimes you don’t even get thanks, but demanding such is missing the mark completely. Even so, if the lack of gratitude really bothers you Yeas all that much, take the stairs instead. It’s better for your cardiovascular system.


Leslie Arntz is a freshman magazine journalism major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].