I have a pet peeve that I need to share – and no, it has nothing to do with my road rage. Well, maybe it does a little.
Although I would be the first one to agree that walking and jogging are great activities to stay in shape, it shouldn’t be done at the risk of losing your life. Why is it that in a town like Garden City, with beautiful well manicured houses with sidewalks on most blocks, that runners and walkers choose to treat every day as the annual Turkey Trot and take up space in the street? I think it comes down to two words - common courtesy.
Now maybe I could understand if you were running with your dog, but from what I see a lot of dog walkers remain on the sidewalk (a topic for another day). Or if you are pushing one of those baby strollers that look more like a bicycle, although I don’t know if I’d want my baby being pushed in front of me as I went through some of the intersections that seem to have "rolling" stop signs.
For the most part it wouldn’t be an issue but when you have two or three walkers side by side, even on the wider streets like Whitehall or Stratford, it becomes dangerous – for the walkers and for the drivers maneuvering the streets. Even worse is when the evening shadows start to creep in and yet most don’t wear any reflective clothing but still run in the street. Why would anyone want to challenge a 3,500 pound vehicle moving at speeds of 30 mph?
Knowing that we have many students driving back and forth to school, why do we feel that it’s a necessity to create an obstacle course for them when there is a perfectly good alternative? Why not use the sidewalks as they were intended to be used and avoid the inevitable disaster? Common courtesy.
Is it the fact that running on a sidewalk is more pounding on your legs than running in the street? If that’s the reason, get a bicycle and really save your knees and shins. Or, just go up to the high school and use the track. Common courtesy.
What really amazes me is when I see a jogger running down Stewart Avenue or Nassau Boulevard – in the street! I don’t know about you but why would anyone venture into one of the two busiest streets in town with fours lanes of traffic and cars traveling at speeds that approach 50 mph – and the runners give drivers a dirty look. Common courtesy.
So as the weather gets nicer (one of these days, really) and more of us get out to run or walk, please, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Let’s leave the streets to the cars, buses and bicycles and keep the jogging and walking on the sidewalks or at the track.
Let's have a little common courtesy for one another.