Friday, March 22, 2013

Road Rants

Training for the Boston Marathon means that I have spent a lot of time on the roads.  I would say about 75% of the people I encounter on the roads are very respectful.  The other 25% suck the big one.  Today was one of those days where that 25% was the majority.  Once last fall I remember going out for a run right after the Patriots lost a game, and drivers were visibly crankier.  I'm not sure what was happening today, but the fact that it's late March, temps in the 30's, and there's still snow all over the place might have something to do with it.

Here's my list of things that are absolutely going to happen when you spend enough time running on the roads:

  • If you are on a deserted road where there is absolutely no traffic, and you come up to a narrow bridge, there will suddenly be a car coming from each direction.  The two cars will squeeze together and you will be left trotting on the edge of the bridge like you're teetering on a balance beam.
  • If you are on a quiet road where not a single car has passed you for miles, and you come up to a sharp blind corner, a car will come bombing around the corner and will have to do a very dramatic swerve to get around you.  Frequently in conjunction with a hand gesture.
  • If you are running along on that nice quiet, dry road where you haven't seen any traffic for miles, and there's only one puddle and it's right in front of you, a car will come towards you and will drive as close to you as possible so that you can't run around the puddle.
  • You are not obligated to run on a sidewalk; you are technically allowed to run on the street even if there is a sidewalk.  And keep in mind that when you do, certain drivers are going to "teach you a lesson" about it.
  • A dog will chase you (or at least "aggressively follow" you)
  • Someone will look at you with disgust when you spit on the street
  • Someone will wave at you and you won't know if 1. they're just being nice, if 2. you know them, or if 3. they're using the "I can smell you from here" gesture
  • Someone will speed up and swerve towards you, and you will hope a cop will be there to see it, but there won't be.

On today's run I was passed by Joe Stud driving an old fixed up sports car, revving the engine louder as he sped up passing me.  He did this while unbeknownst to him, his directional was blinking away for no reason.  Driving around with your directional on is the vehicular equivalent of walking around with your fly down.  It makes me giggle.  

So is it just in New England that we have rude drivers?  Or is it like this everywhere?

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