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Sunday, August 15, 2010

Mostly, You Make A Lovely Target

We’ve spoken, perhaps, on the many ways in which I try to enrich my city, the fair metropolis of Minneapolis.

There’s my “I’m-picking-up-yer-trash” day in the park across the street from my house.

There’s the fact that, in a continued effort to beautify America I not only wear lipstick when I go out but I also wear real pants and shoes, a fashion convention that seems to have gone the way of the passenger pigeon in some parts of the state.

And there’s my oft-repeated vision for revenue that includes pelting bound vandals with reasonably priced and rotted vegetables, all for the benefit of the community.

I like Minneapolis; and other than the fact that the weather here wants to kill me (and makes just such an attempt every winter, the little lake-dotted bestid), I have no plans to live anywhere else.

City living! Yeah!

And then again, for cryin’ out loud, I live in the city.

Oh, sure. I mean, I hear what you’re saying. “But Pearl! Sidewalks and mature trees! Fabulous places to eat, live bands, theatre, public transport and neighborhoods with neighbors you know!”

And I think, gosh darn it, you! You’re right. What’s my problem, anyway?

The newest issue to rear its head and make me reach for the club I keep in the backseat?

People walking down the middle of the street.

Remember when you were little? Remember people telling you to stay out of the road, to stay on the sidewalk, to watch for cars?

Yeah. These people didn’t have that advantage, apparently. For some reason – and maybe you can help me out here – there are people who believe that the road is meant for peds.

You know, I don’t mind the peds xing*. But what about when they’re not xing? What about when they’re just walking down the middle of the street, even when your lights are on them, even when you have to brake to avoid grinding the little pin-heads into the tarmac? What about when harsh, short words are exchanged and I begin to feel for the mace on my key chain and think about swinging around the block for a second time just to see how far this guy can run when he’s blind?

The rules are clear: Ducks don’t date geese; it gets easier to gain weight as you age; and your soft, unshielded body is no match for my Honda. Get outta the street.

The following is a list of reasons I believe may explain what’s going through these nitwits’ heads as well as reminders to myself that they are humanoid beings with families who love them:

  • Heavy medication. They simply don’t know where they are.
  • Fear of the sidewalk. They fell on the sidewalk once and never again.
  • It’s the first road they’ve ever seen and they just love it.
  • Sleepwalking.
  • Erectile dysfunction. (I just like saying that.)
  • Grandiose sense of entitlement. You move.
  • They hope you will hit them so that they can sue you and make a billion dollars and never have to work…

Well, that’s my bit for both the City and Mankind. I pick up garbage, I wear pants, and I try not to crash my car into the mentally challenged.

My work here is done.

*Sorry. Since I was small I’ve enjoyed the thought of “peds” “x”ing.


Kevin Musgrove said...

I'm a ped and the only excuse I ever have for this behaviour is either no sidewalk or a sidewalk entirely covered in parked cars. My theory is that these are actually dispossessed drivers who have had to park their car some place ooh... feet away from their destination and they literally don't know what the sidewalk is for. When United are playing at home we have them in droves, wandering aimlessly along the dual carriageway like wildebeest on the plains of the Serengeti.

Fred Miller said...

Metropolis of Minneapolis? No. No. Garrison Keillor says it's the metropolis of St. Paul with a population of over a million if you include its western suburbs.

Nice job keeping an eye on the metropolis of St. Paul ;)

The Fred Effect

Sam Liu said...

I love living in the city, I wouldn't want to live anywhere else. Though I love the countryside, I couldn't actually spend every day there. I need life and busyness and a lively metropolis :

But urban living does have its down points. And a lot of pedestrians do walk in the middle of the road here too. But I don't drive, so it doesn't really affect me. One of my major city pet-peeves is people pushing into me in the street to get to wherever they need to go. So rude!

SparkleFarkle said...

You be the one on the left, right?--> Click HERE


a Broad said...

I am a ped when I am not in a taxi.
I agree wholeheartedly with every single thing you said..
I think "Fear of the sidewalk and It is the first road they have seen" works for me, as well as that grandiose sense of entitlement... which might also apply to some people NOT in Hondas but in cars ... you know who I mean, those Large cars that are all about Compensation of ... well, you know..
I say hit em !

sage said...

I liked the line, "a fashion convention that seems to have gone the way of the passenger pigeon"

But if they don't wear pants, what do they wear? I bet they wear something in January or all the supposedly benefits of going nude would be lost.

a Broad said...

I just had an idea, you have me thinking here Pearl !!
In Buenos Aires, yesterday in fact, the 21st person in the city was killed by a bus. Yep... it is only August and 21 people have been mowed down by city buses.
So gather up those sh*t for brains people in the middle of the road and send them down here..

WrathofDawn said...

We have the same problem here. Perfectly functioning sidewalk at the ready and these morons stroll down the street instead.

Additionally galling is the knowledge that if there WERE no sidewalk, the same morons would be sqwaking loudly that there's "no safe place to walk."


Herding Cats said...

I love that you are trying to justify their actions. The truth is, they are just dumb.

A Mom on Spin said...

Maybe it's just not erectile dysfunction. . .

Perhaps they took the meds and are having the serious side effect that lasts longer than 4 hours and are looking for the nearest emergency room!

RawknRobynsGoneBlogWild said...

I love your therapeutic thought of spraying to see how fast they can run blind.
Great post! Thanks for the laughs!

Argent said...

They're over here too. There's a school up the street from us and every day loads of 11-18-year old muppets come spewing out of the gates... into the road, Honk or toot and you get whatever's 'in' these days for swearing. I say run 'em down. If they're too stoopid to live...

Gigi said...

Take 'em down, Pearl. Take 'em down. Apparently, they are asking for it.

Douglas said...

Basic, and ongoing, pet peeves:

1. Groups of teens 5 abreast walking from the bus stop after school.

2. People riding bikes in the opposite direction of traffic, rolling through stop signs and red lights, and riding side by side.

3. People who toss empty beer bottles onto the street from the car in front of me.

4. People who toss lit cigarettes onto my windshield (or hitting my face or chest while I rode a motorcycle).

5. Getting maced for wobbling down the middle of the street in Minneapolis.

K A B L O O E Y said...

Maybe people with erectile disfunction (hey, that was fun) should read my junk mail and stick to the ped zing. I used to call it that too. Funny post.

Anonymous said...

Can't say I've not done that, but usually tipsy, at 2 o'clock in the morning. Now that? That I could understand.

Can we add bicyclists to the pet peeve list, the ones that don't use the bike path/lane, but instead ride just far enough into the traffic lane to hold up all the cars behind them?

Bossy Betty said...

You follow all the rules of being a good citizen. Still working on that pants rule....

Powdered Toast Man said...

I get out of my car and hit their knee caps with a 5 iron and leave them in the middle of the street. That show them not to walk in the middle.

Tempo said...

I'm pretty sure youre allowed to run them over Pearl...

Gaston Studio said...

A major pet peeve of mine, this is, and we live in the city too... if you can call this little burg a city.

Symdaddy said...

Ya know ... I'm having a bad hair day (without hair).

I read it ...
I understood it ...
I'm pretty sure I had a laugh in all the right places ...

... but I don't feel any sympathy! I wonder why that is?

Oh, yes! It's because I live in Cardiff, Wales ... dirty parks and pavements (sidewalk*), mad drivers, abusive Pedestarians (from Ped) and inept law enforcement (not a magnum in sight).

I guess I'm used to it all!

* free translation

vanilla said...

Great. I'm not alone. Since childhood, I,too, have always liked "ped xing".