Apparently, working as an elevator operator is a job that has it’s ups and downs. And BOOM! We’ve started. Straight in with the jokes.


Surprisingly, the first elevator was built way back in 236 BC by a certain Archimedes, which just shows how productive he could be when not lounging about in bathtubs. However, the first modern elevator wasn’t installed until 1857. Given that the first elevator shaft was installed an awkward four years beforehand, this must have meant that the proposed method of travelling from floor to floor for those first couple of years was very akin to ‘falling’. In other anachronistic hilarities, the cigarette lighter was actually invented before the match, and the can opener was invented 48 years after the can. Sell-by dates can really be a bitch.


Another peculiar thing about the elevator (or ‘lift’, for those among you who, like me, temporarily forgot their British heritage) is its names. Both ‘lift’ and ‘elevator’ suggest that it is only able to travel upwards. Given that they can apparently travel downwards too, I suggest we get in to the habit of using these alternate names for this transport type: Drop, or Descendor (the latter of which sounds like the name of a particularly shit Autobot.



It turns out that elevators are pretty much the safest mode of transport. Only 1 in 12 million lift rides results in an anomaly, which is usually just the doors failing to open. This is reassuring knowledge for when you’re riding in a box known effectively as a ‘cage’ (or ‘cab’, if you’re American (though whether they are analogous to the British ‘taxi’ is yet to be confirmed)). In fact, over a period of 150 years, there was only one elevator free-fall incident, in which the occupant fell 75 floors. And you know what? She didn’t even die. I would tell you more, but I’m thinking of writing an article about the Top 5 luckiest people. It will probably be located here at some point.


Riding an elevator is an odd experience, with an even more bizarre etiquette. A group of humans standing silently side by side, creating a sombre scene reminiscent of Memorial Day, only more uncomfortable. People lean over to press the door open/close button, in what we’ve already seen is a futile exercise. Small talk and eye contact are kept to a minimum and I’m sure we’re all aware that farting in a lift is wrong on so many levels.


You shouldn't be proud, Barack.


Lifts even make their appearance is pop culture. Ed Sheeran says he’s up and coming like he’s fucking in an elevator. However, the only comparison I can make between him and lifts, is that they both make me feel a little bit sick when they start..


Want more from this author? Read about the Suckiest Jobs

Or for a related article, how about The Everyman’s Guide To Riding The Tube

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