Move Over 101

Rant Warning! 

I love my morning coffee fix, and I’m a Starbucks devotee for my daily morning coffee. No matter where I’ve traveled I try to discover the nearest location to me, but today’s hometown coffee experience would be marked as one of the most memorable coffee days yet.

This morning I actually had some time to sit and savor the experience. I ordered my coffee as I normally do (grande with room for milk), added sugar and milk, then made my way to a wonderful club chair in the corner. I was happy, happy, happy to relax and take it all in. “Life is good,” I thought.

So image me enjoying my morning coffee when all of the sudden a couple bolted over and one of the pair quickly sat in the chair to my left. The husband immediately pointed to the open seat to my right and said, “Can you just move over one?” 

This surprised me, as there were plenty of other seats already together that could accommodate them, and secondly: How did he ask me? Did I really hear him say to me “move over?” I responded with a smile and said, “Well, I’m leaving in less than a minute, so I hope you can wait.” Truth be told, I should have said “No problem, but only if you say “please,” a.k.a. the magic word — but to know how magical, let’s review the definition:


1. (used as a polite addition to requests, commands, etc.) if you would be so obliging; kindly: Please come here. Will you please turn the radio off?

“Òverb (used with object)
2. to act to the pleasure or satisfaction of to please the public.

“Òverb (used without object)
3. to like, wish, or feel inclined: Go where you please.
4. to give pleasure or satisfaction; be agreeable: manners that please.

— Idiom
5. if you please,
    a. if it is your pleasure; if you like or prefer.
    b. (used as an exclamation expressing astonishment, indignation, etc.): The missing letter was in his pocket if you please!

Now that the meaning — and power — of the word is clear, this is my “Move Over Lesson 101”, or as I’m referring to it, “One OH One!” I was left to wonder if he missed the simple lessons of saying please? I would hope not — and although I would have loved to have taught him the lessons of “Move Over 101” right there, I realized that it might be better in this article.

I’m sure you have experienced similar situations and asked nicely to be accommodated with a request. “Please, if you don’t mind, would you move over one so we could sit together?” followed by “We would greatly appreciate it.” That’s the right way to do it. With that example, the results are always great, as you probably end up talking to these people, even if briefly, and enjoy your drink or dinner even more. 

So, how did it end with my Starbuck’s couple? You should know that when I did finally leave I offered my seat to him and only then did he say thank you. I replied, “You’re welcome; have a nice day.”

My friends will tell you I can be very accommodating when asked politely, but I simply refuse to even consider moving over without a polite request and a please – unless it’s for my miniature schnauzer in bed.

And there you have it.