I shouldn’t have to justify my fear of getting hit by a car as a pedestrian. They’re huge and fast objects controlled by human beings of questionable sobriety who have no real qualifications other than being over the age of 16. However, a shocking majority of people have no fear of getting steamrolled by Jose when he takes a ‘we can make it’ yield-on-green left turn with his cargo van full of illegal immigrants when a blinking red hand is cautiously telling them to cross. So if my friends want to make fun of me for not jaywalking across Connecticut Avenue because ‘the cars will stop, they always stop’, they can go right ahead.
It probably doesn’t surprise you that 1.2 million people are killed worldwide in traffic accidents. It probably does surprise you that 800,000 of these people are pedestrians, and most of them probably didn’t just knowingly jump in front of a moving vehicle. You might say “yeah man, but 70% of those killed are in developing countries”. If you happened to say that, I’d say something like… ahem, “Do you have any idea how many drivers came from those developing countries? Have you ever been in a cab? The streets are literally filled with cabs driven by drivers from developing countries.”
Since I’ve been faced with this very clear and present danger for almost a quarter-century now, I’ve developed a list of things you can do to be a safer pedestrian. Let’s just get to the list:
- You should be exponentially more scared of shitty beaters. The likelihood of a car hitting you goes up as the driver’s income goes down. Since the shittiness of the car is a pretty good measure of the driver’s income, this is rule #1.
- Under no circumstances is it a good idea to walk in front of a moving bus, tractor-trailer, or any other exceptionally large vehicle. They have trouble seeing and stopping. Wait the 5 seconds for them to take the right turn.
- To compute the danger value of a U-Haul truck, multiply it’s normal size based value by 1500 to account for the shocking inexperience of the driver.
- Remember that cars with Mexican plates want to hit you so they can kidnap you and hold you for ransom
- High School students after getting out of school will hit anything and everything in between them and the drugs waiting for them at home. Gas prices are really high now, so the rich kids are the only ones driving to and from High School nowadays. Their natural wealth-driven propensity for drugs makes the percentage of drug starved (or riddled) teenagers on the road higher than ever.
Then there’s the obvious stuff like looking out for right-turners, left-turners, and using herds of fat people as a collective human shield between you and and oncoming traffic. I just thought of this movie “Death Race 2000“, which is unquestionably the greatest sci-fi movie ever made. In a breakthrough role, Sly Stallone plays “Machine Gun” Joe Viterbo who, as one of the World’s great Death Race drivers, drives across the country killing innocent people in a quest for the Transcontinental Road Race title. I don’t remember what points were tied to which pedestrians, but it suffices to say that the values were non-PC but fair. The whole thing is 5 stars, a must see.
And if you think you can be some kind of pedestrian/car hybrid by getting a motorcycle, you might as well save time and decapitate yourself now to get it over with. Oh, and I wrote this post from a hipster coffee shop. I think that puts me 1 step closer to being a ‘real blogger’, right?