When I arrived at the post office, there was a long line that didn’t appear to be moving. I stood at the end of it, in the doorway of the building, for a few seconds, until I heard the people in front of me discussing another line. I looked to the left and saw a much shorter line inside.
Apparently, the line I was standing in was for picking up packages (which I was doing) and buying stamps only. Theoretically, it was quicker than the other one. I switched to the shorter (theoretically slower) line.
By the time I left the post office five minutes later, the original line hadn’t even advanced one person.
Yes, boring story. But do you understand what this means? At the grocery store, in the airport, by the elevator, anywhere with a line, I can guarantee I’ll choose the one that takes longer. Sometimes I apologize to the people behind me; other times I keep the knowledge that I’m causing the delay to myself. For once, no apology was necessary.
When I chose the faster line, I really thought my entire life was going to be different from that point forward. I thought my bad luck was over, my future bright with shorter wait times and less frustration.
Then, later that day, while playing skeeball, the ball I threw not only hit the top of the glass and flew out of my lane but proceeded to somehow hit the ball in the next lane, causing that person’s ball to fall down into the gutter instead of score 10 points.
So. My luck has not in fact changed. Instead, it has grown in strength so that I am now able to harness its power to make other people lose at games. Pretty impressive, right?