From the Maky My Life Simple deparment: It was the midst of evening rush hour madness at the Rosslyn Metro station. A young British woman with a perplexed expression stood in front of the exit machine while a growing line of people waited behind her. Someone in the line figured she didn't know where to put her subway card in the machine - thus activating the gates and allowing her to pass through. But after the card slot was pointed out, she looked even more perplexed and said, "No, I don't want to."

Before the line had a chance to get much longer, a quick thinking subway attendant figured out the problem. The woman was a tourist who wanted to keep her exact fare card as a souvenir. The helpful attendant opened the machine and gave her back the expired token. Everyone giggled and passed quickly through the gate.

From the Make My Life Difficult department: It was rush hour and Wilson Boulevard in Arlington was thick with traffic. A long line of cars waited at a nearby gas station which advertises a free car wash (in very large letters) with a fill-up (in smaller letters).

A sudden commotion started near the first car in line. The driver had not had a fill-up and refused the manager's offer of a $4 mechanical car wash. One by one, each of the drivers in the long line was told to back up, and much struggling and confusion ensued while the errant driver tried to make his escape in reverse.

When it was suggested that it might be simpler, safer, and quicker if the man were let through the car wash, the manager gave a brief treatise on his view of human nature. "Oh no," he said sternly. "He'll only come back tomorrow." About 45 minutes later, the last car was washed.