Right of Way

This is something that has been bugging me for awhile, but an event today annoyed the hell out of me so much I needed to write this.

I was going to a coffee shop in a little strip mall to do some writing. When I pulled into the parking lot, there was a car pulling out of the aisle I wanted to go down and a guy with a coffee cup waiting to cross the road. I stopped, with my turn signal on, letting them both go so they would be out of my way. Well, the guy moseyed across the street, not even trying to pick up his pace. In the past month or so, there have been three or four times where I’ve been courteous enough to let people pass in front of me and they’ve taken their sweet time. If someone is older, with kids, have their hands full, I don’t mind them taking their time, but most people – after seeing you stop for them – will jog across, and I appreciate that. But for some people, apparently the world needs to stop for them.

But it gets better. After the guy passed I pulled into the aisle, and had to stop again because the stupid schmuck was moseying down the middle of the fucking lane! I had to wait for him to wander back over to one side. How ignorant can one be? I mean, do you really want to annoy someone who’s driving something that can turn you into a bloody smear?

This reminds me of an argument I had with an ex-girlfriend years ago. We were walking in a park and at one point the path crossed a road. We and a car approached the crosswalk at the same time and – despite the “stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk” sign – I stopped until I was sure the car was stopping. My girlfriend told me, “It’s the law, they have to stop,” to which I replied, “Just because they have to stop doesn’t mean they will stop.” She then gave me this long lecture about how I was a “fearful person.” But to me, it’s just common sense to give the right of way to something that could kill you. You never read stories of some guy getting hit by a car and the car getting the worst of the deal.

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