Sidewalk etiquette 101
Published: Monday, September 20, 2010
Updated: Monday, September 20, 2010 23:09
By the time most students reach college, they know how to operate a vehicle. As such, they are familiar with the rules of the road — for the most part. There are some exceptions.
I firmly feel that if a person can successfully navigate a street, they should be able to navigate a sidewalk. However, the Miami community proves that this feeling is asking far too much.
Sidewalk etiquette is something overlooked on this campus, if only because most pedestrians don't know it exists. Let me clarify something: Sidewalk etiquette is a real thing, and it is a law that the people should embrace.
Let's start with the basics: Walk on the right side of the sidewalk. It's just like driving. And I'm sure you smarta**es are thinking, "But what if I'm in Europe?" Well, jerk-off, I am speaking strictly about our Oxford campus in AMERICA, so that means you follow AMERICAN SIDEWALK ETIQUETTE.
If everyone walks on the right side, you avoid the who-is-going-to-switch-sides face-off encountered whenever two subjects walking toward each other are on the same side of the sidewalk.
Moving on … bicycles. I realize it's difficult for bicyclists because they aren't wanted on the street and they definitely aren't wanted on the sidewalk, so where do those two-wheeled outcasts go?
Easy: ride on the grass.
Your bikes can handle a little wear and tear, and what better way to promote bike helmet safety? I've always dreamed of living in a world where bike helmets can be semi-attractive, so here's a chance for you bikers to change the world. Start sex-ifying those helmets and stop clogging up sidewalks.
Another sidewalk no-no is the hold-up. It's called a sideWALK, not a side STOP-AND-TALK-TO-FRIENDS-YOU-DON'T-LIKE-ENOUGH-TO-ACTUALLY-MAKE-PLANS-WITH-BUT-YOU-WOULD-FEEL-GUILTY-IF-YOU-DIDN'T-STOP-AND-TALK-TO-THEM. This congests our walkways.
If you must cause a hold-up, step off to the side and talk about your old roommate's newest boyfriend there. This is especially true if more than two subjects are involved in the hold-up, spanning across the entire sidewalk and forming a dam. Everyone else in the world has somewhere to be, SO GET OUT OF OUR WAY.
Now, this next rule seems harsh, but before you attack me for being tyrannical, think it over. Pregnant women should arrive on the sidewalks earlier than others so as to avoid traffic congestion. We know you wake up early anyway because of morning sickness and weird-as-flock cravings, so hurry up and use the sidewalks before the non-nauseous, non-pickle milkshake slurping walkers begin their commute.
This early arrival of the pregos will help sidewalk flow tremendously. The pregers walk too slow, take up too much space and their waddling form is downright disgusting. You could be the cutest woman alive, but if that belly holds a fetus, you are instantly an uggo.
I don't want to see that when I'm on my way to class — I'm already pissed off that I have to sit through a geology lab, I don't need the fresh image of a bloated sex maniac on my mind.
And while I'm on my way to that geology lab, it would be much appreciated if clumps of people would walk in CLUMPS, not LINES. We aren't playing red rover here, you don't have to span the entire sidewalk, removing any hope for those looking to pass you and your slow pace.
The only thing worse than a line taking up the sidewalk is a single person taking up the sidewalk, positioning themselves as inconveniently as possible, zig-zagging back and forth like a drunken antelope. And if that person is pregnant … non-denominational (or possibly non-existent), god save us all.
Unfortunately my perspective is limited to a certain word count, so I cannot fully cover all of sidewalk etiquette. Let me leave you with a brief list of things not to do while walking on a sidewalk: text, use the speakerphone feature on your cell, sing out loud, move at a painfully slow pace, stop to remove rocks or other items from your shoe, read, skip (especially if you're bra-challenged) and, most importantly, never EVER under ANY CIRCUMSTANCE run with a backpack.
I will hunt you down and punch you.