Thursday, March 10, 2005

i got a new way to walk (walk, walk)

i've always lived in cities where the whim of pedestrian was king, where the world was my crosswalk, where the streets were safe for noble non-drivers! growing up, my running partner and i would play a game called "they'll stop", where we would run across the street whenever we felt like it because chances were, the cars would stop... and if they didn't, our town was so small that a wave of community outrage would prompt the construction of at least two or three commemorative crosswalks complete with flashing stop signs so that those following in our footsteps could cross as they pleased. boston has a similar flow of pedestrians and if it was near class time, or lunch time or say, nap time and we had more than three people waiting to get across the street, we would just cross because the "they'll stop" principle still applied. as much as people dislike college students-- real people with absolutely no responsibilies except drinking all the beer in the fridge on a tuesday afternoon-- vehicular manslaughter doesn't usually appeal to your average commonwealth avenue driver. blood with that kind of alcohol content could peel the paint right off daddy's bmw. there were reasons not to hit people in rochester and boston, but los angeles, where i'm pretty sure i've never even seen a pedestrian, the act of walking is a sin. since walking is a sin it will be punished by whatever vengeful god claims this smoggy city. jaywalking on the other hand is out of god's hands and will be punished by powers that be at the lapd. i should have thought of that before i crossed the street separating our office from The Parking Lot of Death. the nearest crosswalk is a mile down the road and frankly, i do not feel the need to spend an extra ten minutes on the same side of the street as my cockroach infested place of work just so i can get from one side to the other "safely". as i crossed the four lanes of lankershim, i smiled at two cops watching the The Parking Lot of Death. i was happy they were at The Parking Lot of Death since i heard several cars were stolen and someone was knifed a few weeks back. "hello, friendly cops," i said and instead of a nice "hello" in return, i received a firm talking-to from a forty-year-old member of the lapd with braces. it's very hard to take someone seriously if they have braces. i mean honestly, braces? shouldn't you have taken care of this a long time ago? a time before you took a position of power within the community? braceface babbled on about los angeles jaywalking laws while i contemplated throwing myself back into the four lanes of traffic. apparently i can walk to the nearest corner and cross at a broken white line- the lapd considers this a "makeshift crosswalk". i on the other hand, think this is crap. if i was not aware of the "makeshift crosswalk law", the cars won't be aware of the "makeshift crosswalk law", and why would i want to spend an extra three minutes on the cockroachy side of the street to just to play my normal game of "they'll stop" all the way down at the corner. besides, if i die crossing the street i want the commemorative crosswalk going straight from the office to The Parking Lot of Death... no one with braces can influence pedestrian traffic!

1 comment:

MGDub said...

This incident would make a great short film. "Braceface vs. the Pedestrian"