Is it just me, or is the etiquette for runners/walkers freakishly difficult? Okay, here’s the scenario – I am walking along an absolutely gorgeous road, hedged by rosy-hued trees on either side. The sun is barely peeking it’s pale, new face over the horizon, and the birds are whistling secrets to each other over my head, in soft and tender chirps. The crunch of leaves and the regular thump of my heart create a rhythmn that keeps a steady beat. I breathe as deep as I can, drawing in the heady fragrance of a beautiful fall morning – dying leaves, crisp air, and the distant aroma of apple orchard doughnuts. Life is unbelievably, deliciously good.
And then, in the distance…is a runner. Life is ruined. Because here’s the deal – this guy is coming a completely different pace than me. Which makes distance hard to judge. So, I stare at the ground (because you don’t want to look up too soon, right? And end up staring down a complete stranger for the most awkward 5 seconds of your life?) So, I stare at the ground, and the internal commentator starts up. Okay, he’s at the 25, he’s at the 20, the 15, the…OKAY, LOOK UP NOW!
I look up, just in time to see him zoom by, eyes fixed straight ahead. “He so rude,” the IC comments. I nod my head in offended agreement. But at least the crisis had been averted. I heave a contented sigh, and look ahead to the distant horizon. Then, I see, 20 paces ahead of me, a walker’s worst nightmare…
Another walker. Walking at a slightly slower pace. Going the exact same way. This is as awkward as it gets, my friends, because now you have a choice to make. Would you like to slow down? “Uh. No. Have you looked at your thighs lately, girlfriend?” says the IC. Okay, then. Slowing down not an option. How about speeding up? Or running? “All right, but then you gon’ have to keep that pace up, y’ know girl. And has you seen them thighs of yours’? I’m just sayin’ you ain’t gonna be able to keep that up…but you know best. Like when you eat all them doughnuts. But you go ‘head.”
I glare in aggrieved silence. “So what do you think I should do?” I growl. “Miss Bossy,” I add under my breath.
The other walker, who I unfortunately just now noticed is right across from me, flings a startled look over her shoulder, stares at my set glare and mumbling lips, and takes off like a frightened deer.
“Yeah. Now that right there is how to run, girlfriend. When you get them thighs in the same zip code, maybe you run like that.”
“Shut. Your. Trap.” I say between gritted teeth. The biker, who I just now noticed behind me, hides a smirk and bellows, “Passing on your leeeeeft!”
Bikers have no etiquette whatsoever. Allow me to translate – passing on your left means, “Get out my way! Moron.”
I grimace and whisper to the IC, “This is all your fault.”
She ignores me grandly. So I say it again.
Unbending, she says grudgingly, “I’m sorry, girlfriend. Y’ know I only want what best for you.” I nod in half-hearted agreement.
“So I know you won’t take no offense when I say that if you take up biking…girl, that really work them jello thighs…”