Thursday, 22 October 2009

Why I hate pedestrians

You know what I hate? Pedestrians. That self-satisfied, striding, boot-bedecked bunch of scum. Is it just me, or does the country suddenly seem to be full of them? I've never tried walking anywhere myself -- why would I? I'm a successful adult -- but it seems I can hardly travel down the street these days without one of them stepping off the pavement in front of me without looking, their face set in a holier-than-thou expression as they jump out of the way of my car in a burst of expletives. Something clearly needs to be done, and it's good that the government are starting to realise this.

The thing is, it's not just that pedestrians are all smug and annoying when they bang on about "health" and "pollution". That's sickening enough, but if their smugness was the only problem I could just ignore them - after all, they and their silly 'shoes' flash past quick enough when I get going, and their smugness can't penetrate my car's tinted windows. But the thing is there's more to it than that, because have you noticed that even though pedestrians walk millions of miles on our road system every single day, they contribute nothing at all to the cost of that road system? They have thousands and thousands of miles of dedicated pedestrian-only travel routes -- pavements, they're called, or sidewalks if you're that way inclined -- which they don't pay a penny for! Whilst honest motorists are taxed left, right and centre, they don't pay anything at all for all these facilities they enjoy. It beggars belief.

And recently, of course, it's got worse. As I'm driving up the street I constantly come across pedestrians walking across my part of the road to get from one of these pavements to another. I mean, what the hell...? Do they want the shirt off my back as well? They've been given vast tracts of pedestrian-only routes, where I'm certainly not allowed to drive, but apparently this isn't enough for them. Oh no, they want to keep encroaching into my space as well. Sure, we've all heard these walking zealots who say that it's because the 'pavements' don't form a joined-up network, meaning they can't walk to where they want to go without having to step onto the road from time to time. Aw, bless their little hearts. To pedestrians I say this: get off my part of the road. If you walk there when I'm coming along then I'll happily run you down, that's all.

In the long term there's clearly only one solution to all this. If pedestrians want to walk on our streets, which we pay for with all our driving taxes, then they need to pay their share and take their part of the responsibility. Anybody who walks anywhere should undergo training, should have to pay an annual tax towards the facilities they enjoy, should display a license plate so they can be identified, and should each be made to carry insurance in case they are ever involved in any accidents. Until then, they can sod off back to Shoeville or wherever it is they go when they aren't freeloading off the rest of us.

24 comments:

effemm said...

Superb.

Fran Barton said...

Fantastic Ian, I think this says it all really.

juhunio said...

as a cyclist (controversial!) I would like to add that I hate the way the smug tossbags step blindly off their swathes of pedestrian-only walkway into the road/cycle lane when their ears are telling them there is no car coming, rather than also using their eyes to check that there's no silent cyclist coming along who is going to have to swerve suddenly around their stupid complacent moronic selves rather than run them over.

magicroundabout said...

Yeah! You tell 'em. I'm fed up with the fact that motorists are always to blame for them being hurt too. I mean, can't they wear helmets or full body-armour or something?

P.S. Excellent. Love it!

Ian Walker said...

@Magicroundabout: Excellent point. Pedestrians should take responsibility for what happens when I hit them with my car. Most importantly, if they've not covered themselves with padding when I hit them, they have shown contributory negligence towards their injuries. Indeed, they practically hit themselves.

@Juhunio: Er... Er...

Joby said...

Excellent! Made me chuckle :O)

Mike Armstrong said...

:)

you don't really, do you?

P.S. have bought your book, and am learning just how crap many research figures are.

Purple Squirrel said...

All this separate pedestrian infrastructure is a bunch of expensive nonsense. People should just take a class from the League of American Footmen on how to be Vehicular Pedestrians. Get out there and walk like a car. That way we can get rid of all the sidewalks and make more traffic lanes.

Donny said...

Awesome satire.

I must admit though that it took me about half of the article before I recognized it as such. I guess I've talked with too many people that actually seem to think like this.

Brad and Esther said...

Sadly this form of satire would go completely over the heads of the vast majority of motorists. I've been reading the guardian's bicycle blog recently and it makes me so angry the number of comments about how bicyclists don't pay for the roads etc. Anyway your blog is a breath of fresh air.

Jym said...

=v= Perhaps you should change your name to suit this new and improved worldview.

Mikael said...

and furthermore... those daft, underdeveloped bipedal dimwits should be forced to wear helmets, like the Danish government suggests for THEIR underdeveloped, bipedal dimwits.

Kevin said...

Ow! Ian!
You've made me snort hot coffee out of my nose!

This is brilliant. What's sad is my non-cycling friends won't get it.

kimharding said...

Absolutely right, these damn pedestrian shouldn't be allowed. As Margaret Thatcher once said, anyone not driving a car is a looser!

Sadly, I suspect that if you were to get the Daily Mail to publish you post, most of the readership would take it seriously...

anna said...

brilliant! hate them all :).

snee said...

The Highway Code is also relevant to pedestrians.

That is all. Except for the stoopid feckers who just stop in front of you for no reason...

amoeba said...

Poe's Law!

whatusernamesareleft said...

Hey, I hear you on the pedestrian problem. I had no idea this stupid crap happened in other countries, I thought it was a USA issue with this "don't look both ways anymore" crap, and all that stupidity. Then they have the nerve to blame the motorist! Whenever they have pedestrian safety stings here, they botch that too, I don't think police understand it either. I have heard they just run out and people have to slam on there brakes.

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td90uk said...

I'm sorry (I'm not, I hate motorists), but is it not motorists that park on pavements? Motorists that kill pedestrians by mounting kerbs? Motorists that make pedestrians wait in the rain whilst your in your nice cushy cars? There is a term, it is called selfishness and every motorist in the world falls into that category, show some respect.

Ian Walker said...

@td90uk Your irony detector needs to go in for a service.

PostcardsfromtheNorth said...

brilliant! I'm often trying to make this comparison for certain friends, they don't get it. Maybe they'll get this! ;-)

robinson said...

Ian, you might have heard of these bits of research which I think turned up in NS.
Someone in the U.S. counted up the time taken to work to pay for a car, added to the time taken driving, washing, buying, reading car mags etc, and put that against the distance travelled.
The figure arrived at was 5 miles per hour.
This means we could have walked everywhere.
Also other research from U.K. found that commuters shifted work or home to maintain the same commute time when they were given a faster means of travel.
This all suggests we dont quite need our cars so much as want them and pay for it with clogged roads.