It’s Behind You

I’m beginning to think that the government needs to implement a law banning walking without due care and attention. On health and safety grounds, if nothing else. For instance  – to take three examples from just five minutes on my way to the station this morning – the man who chose to walk down the middle of the road while sending a text message, the guy craning his head round to see what the ambulance was doing while simultaneously crossing the road (suddenly I understood the full force of the phrase ‘rubbernecking’ – he’d got his head twisted so far round he looked like a barn owl) and, most dangerous of all, the (yes) middle-aged chap who’d come to a halt right in front of the only in-bound ticket barrier while he tried to find where he’d hidden his oyster card. And if you’re wondering what’s so risky about the latter, consider that I’d already had to negotiate my way around the first two, and I was in no mood to be further delayed.

Sometimes, just sometimes, ‘budge up’ might actually be justified. Although on this occasion I confined myself to the most withering ‘excuse me’ I could muster.

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7 responses to “It’s Behind You

  1. I think it’s very rare that anything is more effective than withering but polite, it shows you’re keeping your head. I have to say mind, I am guilty of the first sometimes, I wander texting and listening to my iPod and then wonder why car drivers hate me when I cross the road. Whoops!

  2. Never mind car drivers – cyclists hate you too… I really must get one of those air horn things

  3. Hey! I am a cyclist! I never get in the way of cyclists though, I feel sympathetic to their plight so watch out!

  4. yeah – but if you’re crossing the road effectively deaf and blind, how do you know you’re not in the way of any cyclists? Or do you cycle along with your iPod in texting away too? Oh impetuous youth…

  5. Oh, ok, so I’m a bad person! No need to prod me with guilt! I’m a little less bad since I ambled a cross a road then looked left to see I was blocking a Police Van’s path. (whoops!)

    I have text very occasionally while cycling, but generally I like to be very safe and very obedient to the law when cycling, because if I’m not conscious of following the rules then that means the motorists are right to be angry, but if I am and they get angry I can feel quite alright about ranting back at them. That’s probably the worst reason ever to follow the rules, but still, it’s a reason.

  6. well if you can text while cycling you’re certainly more co-ordinated than me.. that would require taking both hands off the handlebars…

  7. Oh, I text one handed, generally. This is why I resist the lure of one of those shiny prada phones as they require two hands!

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