To the people who keep hitting me with their cars

I’m a kind and gentle woman by nature. I’m dedicated to the search for inner peace and to sharing that peace with others. I’m nice to animals, I don’t kill bugs, and I almost never yell at my students.

In short, it takes a lot to get me riled up.

But today is the second day in a row that I’ve been hit by a car in the same crosswalk, and I’m feeling a little angry. The fear of being mown down in the street like a stray cat is starting to interfere with the inner peace.

I know just what you both did, too. Look left, no traffic, turn. But would it really take too much time out of your busy schedule to LOOK FORWARD as you make your turn? Is that too much to ask? Or were you sick the day they covered driving in high school drivers’ ed?

I’m starting to be a little bit afraid of my walk to work, because you may be waiting for me at the crosswalk, lurking until I try to cross, then attacking me with your little plastic Japanese car. I may have to start walking to work with a baseball bat, so the next time you hit me, I can smash your hood and your windows and maybe, just maybe, if I accidentally break a small part of you, I’ll find that it doesn’t interfere with my inner peace all that much after all.

I’m sorry, I try not to use strong language, but since this is the pit, I suppose I need to include the obligatory explatives. Here goes.

Darn. Darn you. Darn your children, your family, your dog and your cat and the cow which you undoubtedly know as well as you know your toothless wife. Moreover, darn your dratted drivers’ ed teacher, the dagblamed DMV instructor who gave you a licence, and the darned bank official whose poor judgement gave you a loan for the car you hit me with. Darn you all to heck.

Don’t worry… I’m sure they’re not doing it on purpose… or are they?

When my friends and I were walking on a busy street late at night, we were walking past a shopping complex or whatever. There was the exit from the parking lot along the sidewalk. An inncoent looking red car sat there. It didn’t move, so we started walking. He waited until my friend was directly in front of him before he shot forward.

I grabbed her arm and yanked so hard, I thought I dislocated something, but she didn’t get hit. We all glared at the man sitting in the car. He was smiling genteely. I bet he felt all safe in his locked car. What the fuck is up with that?

They’re out to get us, FisherQueen. We’d better watch out.

Please be careful FisherQueen. My sister actually got run over by someone much like you described. She was walking across the street and the car turned the corner, ran into my sister knocking her down and ran over her with the front tire. The moron stopped momentarily and then drove off…driving over her again! Fortunately she only had bad bruises on her legs (she’s a big girl and I guess the extra padding helped).

When I go out walking, I don’t cross the street until I’m absolutely sure no one is turning.

car drivers bad!

been hit by 3 of em’ on my motorcycles. first was 17 yr old girl on cell phone-- almost killed me.
2nd was drunk hitting me from behind while i was in the turn lane waiting to turn left-- didn’t get hurt too bad
3rd was knucklehead on freeway, head in the clouds, drifted right over and pinned me between his piece of shit and a vw bug-- no injurys, but i broke his mirror

When cars try to turn right over me, I like to slap their hoods with the palm of my hand and then scream as loudly as I can, as if I’ve been hurt.

Okay, I only did that once, at an intersection where I’d had near misses more than once. The ones I really like are the ones who hesitate before running you down, making you believe they’ve a) seen you and b) give a damn about human life.

I hope you weren’t hurt. Carrying the baseball bat doesn’t sound like such a bad idea. As I tell my children in parking lots where people are driving carelessly, “Watch OUT! These people will run over you as soon as look at you!” I like to say this loudly, especially if the driver’s window is open.

Just wanted to chime in with my almost-been-hit complaints. I live close to downtown, so I walk around traffic A LOT. My peeves:

  • cars turning left into me (just like you said, FisherQueen - no traffic, just go - don’t bother looking for pedestrians)
  • cars turning right practically over my toes (I had a can of soup in my lunchbag in my hand one day - my only regret was that I missed when I swung it at the yahoo that nearly ran me over)
  • cars flying around behind me after I have just barely cleared crossing in front of their car (I’m sure cars have touched my backpack doing that in the past)
  • cars flying across sidewalks out of alleys without even looking for me, as I scurry out from in front of their grill
  • cars turning into parking lots right in front of me, as I backpedal to get out from in front of their grill
  • buses parking right over the crosswalk as they wait for the backlog of traffic to clear off (yeah, the walk light just came on - it’s a short one, so it will be over by the time you get lost. Don’t worry about me, though. I’ll just stand here and wait for the next one.)
  • cars inching forward as I cross the street in front of them; lookit, bub, I waited for my walk light, and I’m danged well walking now. Deal.
    These things are all stupid, and all dangerous, and you’d think that drivers would not be so negligent as to drive this way, but I would say I have a near miss from something on this list about once every two weeks (and it’s a near miss because I am looking around and getting out of the way of stupid drivers all the time).

(InternetLegend, I yell, “It’s a parking lot, not a FREEWAY!!” at people all the time in parking lots. Morons.)

My favorite incident was when I was rightfuly cross the street and a car rolled out to turn right on red without barely a foot between me and him, and blocking the crosswalk. I walked around the back as he creeped out further and gave a big palmed “smack” on the back of his car. He then peeled around the corner blasting his horn as if it would scare me off somehow.

There was one section off 20th street right in front of the Franklin Institute where all the guys turning right seem to think that pedestrians have no right to be there, in spite of the large numbers of children and tourists in that museum-laden area. I’ve had two guys honk at me for not slowing as a pedestrian to let them zoom through their turn. One time the jackass yelled at me as he was trying to talk on his cell phone and a cop pulled him right over. The idiot was still on the phone as he tried to tell the cop that I was wrong somehow.

The other time the guy regained his nads around the corner and decided to yell at me for crossing the street. My commong “leanr to drive and you won’t have these problems” has never failed to reduce an idiot driver to snarling a “Fuck You” in reply.

FisherQueen, I can relate to this. Two days in a row is too much, though. I have been hit by cars 3 times in my life and the reason I haven’t been hit more times is because I am very, very quick.

I also watch them like a hawk. Is it just Chicago, or have cars quit stopping for red lights? You can almost be sure that a car (or 2, if the second one is a taxi) will run a red light (not yellow, red). Is everyone in that big of a hurry to get one block before they have to stop anyway?

And don’t get me started about cars that don’t even slow down to turn right on red.

**InternetLegend and Mr. Miskatonic[/], I personally have slapped the hood or side of about 1,000 cars - I have been doing it for about 15 years now and I encourage others to take up the practice. And after they start swearing at you - laugh at them - it feels good.

I am also considering getting one of those compressed air horns that come in a can, for people who block the intersection. Unfortunately, they cost about $3.00 or so, and I would probably spend about $30 a week on them.

Red lights appear to have become little more than a suggestion here in Northern Virginia, also.

Reminds me of the time Angie and I were walking along Leesburg Pike (busy east-west street linking Alexandria and Leesburg, VA) and crossed Patrick Henry Drive (busy north-soth street) when some jerk decided to turn left from westbound Leesburg Pike onto southbound Patrick Henry without yielding. Angie slapped his deck lid and the jerk attempted a U-turn, but was unable to complete the turn because of traffic. In fact, the moron nearly hit an oncoming car!

Also, I work in a neighborhood with several one-way streets and parking garages. Naturally, I’ve had a few instances where drivers were exiting a garage onto a one-way street while only watching for oncoming traffic and not pedestrians (me) coming from the opposite direction. Fortunately, I don’t have to go that way since I’ve moved. For the past year, I’ve used a sidewalk on a two-way street but have to cross two garage exits, at least these have mirrors so I can see if anyone’s coming or not. During the past year, I yelled at one jerk, “Thanks for not hitting me!” If one ever does hit me, I have a little speech planned: “I’m 6-foot-2, 320 pounds. How in the hell did you not see me!?”

I was driving through a parking lot once at a reasonable rate of speed and a little girl jumped out from behind a pickup truck right in front of me. I slammed on the brakes, her dad glared at me and yelled “It’s a parking lot, not a FREEWAY!!”, and I yelled back, “It’s not a playground either, pal.”

Ethilrist, I guess I wasn’t clear that I yell at people going way too fast, not people going reasonable speeds. (BTW, the parking lot speeds in Calgary are around 10-15 km/h - I think most people are going around 30-50.) You’re absolutely right; parking lots aren’t playgrounds, either.

We live on a busy city street and often have to park way aways. We used to like to use the crosswalk to get home. I thought it was a law here in CA that you must stop for a pedestrian in the crosswalk but… We have a nice fantasy of finding out where these idiots live and etching the pertinent section of the Vehicle Code onto their hood. At any rate, crossing in the crosswalk is impossible–unless you have a dog at the end of a leash, people are far more likely to stop for a dog than our sorry selves, but you can’t blame these people, our dog’s an angel, he just radiates peace. I think some people stop simply because they are stunned by his beatific presence, maybe they think he’s a harbinger of the rapture.
Anyway, by ourselves, we’ve resorted to the attitude laden saunter across the street technique.
Here’s my real reason for posting, a selfish rant:
What the fuck is wrong with Saturn drivers?
All of you who drive Saturns and who will be irritated, please forgive me, I’m sure you’re the exception to the rule.
Unless you’re the idiot who T-boned my truck WHILE IT WAS PARKED and told me I was in your blind spot. Honestly. Has anyone else noticed these car related phenomena, e.g., Saturns are unpredictable with bad judgement, Volvos drive too fast and unsafely weave through traffic like they’re Ferrarri tanks, and the Toyota Tercel…oh god, don’t get me started.

I just can’t stop laughing at the title to this thread. Reminds me of the guy in New York city who gets mugged every five minutes.