|How hard is it to understand?|
Although I don't celebrate Christmas, I do appreciate the holiday. This involves enjoying all the decorations, watching the movie Elf on Christmas Eve and trying to be more patient with people. It was in that spirit that, on today's run, I tried to warn people about the dangers of walking in the street with their backs to traffic. The responses I got indicated a fundamental lack of said spirit.
I usually hold my tongue when I see people walking on the right side of the road (often two abreast), trusting that drivers are paying attention. I've found that people don't value my safety guidance and tend to react negatively when I suggest switching to the other side. One conversation went like this:
Me: You know, it's a lot safer if you run facing traffic.
Woman runner: I've been running in this neighborhood for 20 years and never had a problem.
Me: People didn't text and talk on cell phones 20 years ago.
Woman runner: Pfffft
Since then, I've kept my mouth shut. But today I decided to try again. The first offenders were taking up half the road, making it necessary for cars to move into the left lane in order to pass them. I told these people that walking that way was risky. They told me to mind my own business. The next conversation happened when I was closer to home. A man was walking his dog in the street and I said it's safer to walk facing traffic. He snorted, "Yeah, right" so I responded "Have a good day!"
I get that people can react badly when they get unsolicited advice. My hope is that they'll think about the situation and realize later that what I'm saying is true. So far, I haven't seen evidence of that. If I was more noble, I'd continue to warn people despite these reactions. It's a nice thought, but I think I'll wait until next Christmas to try it again.