Saturday, January 14, 2012

Maniacs behind the wheel will not drive better due to this post, but still, here it is

When I walk down the street from the condo I cross some side streets. And it's not uncommon when I'm in the crosswalk, with a green light and a walk signal, that a car approaches down that perpendicular side street, coming toward what is for that motorist a red light (and one where it has been red). But the driver speeds up and then brakes somewhat abruptly just short of the line of the crosswalk (and it's obvious that had I not been walking there the car would have just pulled through the crosswalk).

(In fact, a recent morning it happened at the first intersection I hit when I leave the house. And something of a variation on the standard routine: Although the driver came to a full stop before the crosswalk, after I'd passed I noticed he then pulled up a few feet. He was going straight, and so could go nowhere until the light changed, but it was as though he was determined to get just a tiny bit closer so when eventually it did turn for him he could get across the intersection that split second faster.)

I'm used to it. I'm not saying I like it, but it's happened both there and at plenty of other crosswalks where I've walked in the metropolitan area that it doesn't actively bother me. Still, it wouldn't be a bad thing if drivers, when approaching an intersection, just let off the gas sooner and would come to a gentler stop that made it seem like they grasped they're supposed to cease their forward movement and stay out of the crosswalk whether there's a pedestrian in it or not. But I know better than to expect that.

I cannot help but wonder why so many behind the wheel exhibit this behavior that defies logic. I doubt they are testing their brakes, so it seems like they're deluding themselves they're in a Vin Diesel movie or something. In my mind, it certainly connotes a lack of actual thought while operating a vehicle and a lack of grasping there's others in the world, but I'm pretty sure they won't change their tendencies; it appeases whatever psychological need they may have that can be addressed when behind the wheel.

And I'm agile enough to jump out of the way, just in case.

So I'm not talking to them; I'm talking about them, to people who are not them. If I post this on the blahg or on Facebook or some such site, it's not addressing the issue of their less-than-considerate driving habits; it's merely allowing for me to comment on it in a forum where it's likely someone may actually pay attention, but presumably not affect any change in the world.

It's where we all get to compose our Grandpa Simpson "I am not a crackpot" letter and achieve some level of… well, not venting, or ranting, but sort of saying what I would say to them if there were any reason to bother doing so.

The last-second-braking drivers have their outlet, and I have mine. I imagine they don't like mine any more than I like theirs.

1 comment:

  1. You can always find hammers at thrift stores. Buy several, and carry one when you walk. When another doofus ignores you in the crosswalk, bury the hammer (claw first) in his hood. Then be prepared to shoot him when he gets out of the car.


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