Rant: Pedestrians

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Watch where you walk

I’m fortunate to live in a part of the country where pedestrians have the right-of-way when dealing with cars. In theory, it’s a good idea. The problem is that most pedestrians around here are morons.

When crossing the street or parking lot, people tend not to care the monster truck bearing down on them has a driver who isn’t paying attention and texting about a bitchin’ bar with $1 Bud Lights.

The reasons the morons don’t care is because “pedestrians have the right-of-way.” That’s the law. Of course wandering aimlessly into traffic like a two year old hopped up on juice boxes just because you think the law is on your side isn’t just dangerous — it’s stupid.

I can’t tell you how many times this has happened to me. And I drive a big, black truck that would treat them like a speed bump if I wasn’t looking. They’d never stand for this stupidity on the East Coast. They would lay on the horn (were not allowed to use a horn around here) or if they were late for a meeting, just keep going.

My point? Being right doesn’t mean anything if it means having 2 tons of steel on your chest. It’s personal responsibility. As a responsible member of the community you have a responsibility to make sure the driver sees you just as he/she has the responsibility to stop and let you waddle across the street.

The solution: as you make your way to the crosswalk, look directly at oncoming traffic. If they have no intention of stopping — quit walking!!! Don’t dart out there and hope they lock up their breaks and fishtail into the intersection. If they do stop, give a wave and dart across the street. Do not walk slow. Have respect for their time as well as your own and put a little hustle into it.

For some reason this really gets to me. When I see someone waltz into traffic without looking at what might be barreling down the street makes me want to rip them a new one. We all have to work together to make everything run smoothly.

Am I way off base here? It sure doesn’t feel like it. What do you think?

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4 Comments

  1. When it comes to auto/pedestrian, there is literally no contest. Autos are bigger and deadlier. Even if the pedestrian is hesitant in crossing/not crossing the street, the motorist must stop for him/her. Cooler heads prevail and a life spared.

  2. I’m with you Craig, and I’ve mentioned this to many friends. I think they should get rid of the motion activated sensors that get the crossing lights flashing in the street. These cause two problems. One, the sensor is activated when you’re approaching the street and again after you’ve finished crossing so the lights blink again, this time for no reason. Second, the people on bikes and skateboards that are in the street virtually the same moment the lights start. Those lights don’t make you bullet proof people! Would it really be so hard to push a button and have the lights start 2-3 seconds later?

  3. Exactly! I have dealt with so many morons just walking into traffic it is ridiculous. Often it is not even at crosswalks.

  4. I totally agree Ron. The only problem is that in our go-go lifestyles, the motorist isn’t always paying attention.

    Good point Liz — people also think that yellow line makes them bullet-proof from oncoming cars. A lot of trust.

    One reason I actually moved out of the Greenlake neighborhood in Seattle years ago was because I thought for sure I was going to run someone over. People darting out in front of traffic all over the place — and even some pushing baby strollers. Amazing.

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