If you’ve followed along on these misadventures for any length of time, you know I’m a fan of that jaywalking life. But I’ve recently begun to notice that it’s not for everyone.
It’s more of a skill than I’d realized.
Definitely not a privilege.
Jaywalking is a scofflaw life.
A crime of opportunity – although, I admit to some off guard moments of necessity where I wanted to be home quite urgently. If you get my drift…
The short of it is, if the coast is clear, you go. That italicized verb was referring to the stride of Sir Jay, not the thinly veiled bathroom reference that preceded it.
Key words: clear and go.
Here’s my bitch, people are fucking up this shockingly simple transgression. They’ll dart out into the street without so much as a cursory glance in the direction of traffic. Better yet, they’ll just stand at the edge of the street or on the traffic side of a row of parked cars and wait.
And people stop and let them cross! Classic Portland. Also, classic Wrong of Way.
If I stop for those idiots, it’s gonna be to tell them that they’re doing it wrong. I’ll suggest their attempt to save a few steps is wasting their time.
Not that they’ll listen.
Seriously, though…what’s the thought process there? They aren’t making it across quicker if they have to wait. If they’d walk to the corner, they inherit a right of way, especially if there’s a traffic control. But all they’re showing me with their technique is laziness or stupidity.
But the folks that really get me going? Two different groups, but similar imagery. Think: Beatles album covers. Here, I’ll make it easy for you:
The first group that raises my ire is the group of people who are clearly together, but can’t get together – no, wait, if I’m gonna cite Beatles references, it’s got to be come together! – to cross the street as a group. There’s the de facto leader, simply by virtue of being the only one focusing on the task at hand. There’s invariably someone struggling with a load of shopping or an over or underaged person that needs extra care to cross and then trailing the toddler or infirm entry in this parade is the person with their phace in their fone.
Abbey Road, they are not.
Even worse than this group is the group of strangers recreating the pic at a 90-degree angle, so there’s just this line of failed jaywalkers lining the side of a street. They may get an F for their misguided misdemeanor efforts, but they pass social distancing with flying colors. Inadvertently, I’m sure.
And as I pass them, I mentally mow them all down. Thunk. Thunk. Thunk. Except any of them that went to a corner, mind you.
Is there a Nobel non-Peace Prize? Fine, I’ll start my own.