DEAR MISS MANNERS: I, like many others I know, wear a step tracker. This makes me quite prone to pacing whenever I must wait for something.
The situation I often find myself in is trivial, but still awkward for me. I will often walk up to a door, with the intent to pivot and pace back in the other direction. But when someone else is there and going in or out the same door, they attempt to hold the door open for me.
At that point, I have to explain to them that I’m pacing or “getting in my steps.” Most times, it ends up being an awkward conversation and embarrasses me. Is there a better way to handle this, and is my pacing rude in any way?
GENTLE READER: Pacing can demonstrate impatience, so Miss Manners suggests you consider the context before commencing.
Unless you are dissatisfied with the wait time, avoid pacing in front of the check-in desk at the doctor’s office. The impression of frustration can be mitigated with a thoughtful -- or goofy -- face in preference to intense concentration. Since pacing is the opposite of intentional travel, open doors should be easy enough to avoid -- or pass through before the next lap.