New York has, perhaps more than any other city in the world, many stereotypes associated with it and the people who live there. Not all of them are true – New Yorkers are not rude, the city does not smell like urine (okay, unless someone peed on that block), and it's not an unsafe place, I promise!
We do have some universal traits, though. Yeah, we kinda think we're better than every other city. SOME (not all) of the cab drivers really do drive like psychotic fathers-to-be trying to get their 9 months pregnant wife to the hospital. And yes. We are always, always in a rush. But – we don't expect everyone else to be! I don't mind if you walk slowly. Go for it. However, if you make it impossible for me to continue along at my pace appropriately, I dub thee a Stupid Walker.
Sidewalk life ruiners tend to come in three varieties. First, the...
STOP AND SLAMMERS
You're strolling innocently along, keeping the speed of those around you. Maybe you're humming to some music, enjoying the sunshine, going to where you gotta go. Then – BAM!
My face after it slams into the back of your head.
The asswipe in front of you has gotten some monumentally important text message, or suddenly needs to tie their shoe right this second, or look at a freaking building, and YOU'RE THE ONE paying for it with a quick snuggle to their backside. No sir, I didn't want my face on your jacket either, but since you stopped so suddenly, I assumed it could only mean we should hug.
Was this not what you wanted?
WTF is wrong with these people? They are the essence of oblivious narcissists, not understanding or acknowledging that – gasp – other people are around them. Stopping short in the middle of a sidewalk is equivalent to stopping your car in moving traffic to lean down and turn your radio to a different station. And guess what, they give people tickets for that shit. (Mental note – create and start carrying around “Walking Infraction Tickets.” Throw them at people who do stupid shit while saying, “YOU GOT SERVED!”)
Granted, some of the time these people are just average looking New Yorkers on a douche bender. However, much of the time they appear to be...
Notice I didn't say ALL tourists! Tourists are great. I love tourists. They keep our fair city running. I have stopped and helped many lost tourists with directions over the years. I myself have been a tourist in many other cities. But I try to be a smart tourist, not a dumb one.
Hi there! We're here to make your life a living hell.
It's as simple as this: standing in the middle of the sidewalk is really, really, really annoying to everyone else trying to use that space. I understand you're lost and you need to look at that map, but can't you do it two feet to your left? This isn't quite as offensive if there's just two of you, but when your whole class trip of 20 people has formed a map-reading posse in the middle of the fucking sidewalk, that's a problem.
"YES, THIS IS A GOOD PLACE TO CHECK OUR BEARINGS. HAND ME THAT MAP."
I've lost count of the number of times I've been forced to walk in the street trying to dodge cars and bikes just to be able to continue moving down the street. I don't even bother saying, “Excuse me,” and attempting to elbow my way through anymore – because they always seem to have tourist earmuffs on that don't allow simple things like that to register (not a language issue – I'm pretty sure the gesture “get the fuck out of my way” is universal). So congratulations, you chorus group from Kansas or mom jeans/fanny pack convention from Alabama – you've endangered my life.
Tourists are at least pretty rare, unless you're in Times Square, and why would you be there unless you absolutely had to be? Nay, there's another walking offense that occurs far more often with natives...
Everyone needs friends, right? I love friends. Friends are awesome. But when I'm out walking with my friends, we don't walk in a single line as if we are deciding who Red Rover should send over.
Hahahhaha, nice try KATIE!!!
DEAR GOD, GET OUT OF MY WAY. Once again I'm forced into the street to possibly get hit by a car because you needed to take up the entire sidewalk with your camaraderie. It's not like I'm asking for single file, here – you can easily let me around if you just walk in pairs or even three across on wider sidewalks – I just cannot physically push through an entire wall of people.
It's fine if you wanna walk and talk with a group, but when you see someone coming, drop the fuck back and let me by! Easy as that. Moms out together with strollers are another huge offender in this category – I'm glad your twins are pals with that other baby over there, but together your giant strollers have formed a Transformer called Optimus Sidewalk and it's ruining my life.
Mothers, ROLL OUT!
All of you. You are all ruining my life, every day. How much is it to ask for you to use your head when you walk down the street?
Too much, I guess. PREPARE TO BE SERVED.