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22nd February 2017

Pavement etiquette @ 20:13

Poll #2063527 Pavement etiquette

You are walking side by side with a friend along a narrow pavement on the side closest to the road. You espy two people walking towards you, as they get close nobody seems to be budging. Do you

Step into the road to walk round
1(7.1%)
Hold your ground and be damned
1(7.1%)
If they get any closer punch them in the face
0(0.0%)
Become vaporous and let them pass through you
0(0.0%)
Call the police
0(0.0%)
Do a barrel roll and try and score a strike
0(0.0%)
Dive into the bushes/Over the wall to the other side of your walking companion
0(0.0%)
Form a single file behind the person you are walking with
9(64.3%)
Form a single file in front of the person you are walking with
2(14.3%)
Jump onto the shoulders of the person you are walking with
0(0.0%)
Shove the person you are walking with into the two people walking towards you
1(7.1%)


Pavement etiquette

Recently, while walking through towns, cities and villages I’ve noticed a trend where people play a game of chicken with other pedestrians. Sometimes, especially on narrow paths, people will walk two or three abreast and lack the courtesy to go single file to allow approaching pedestrians to pass

without them stepping into the road. It’s worse with those pushing prams who seem to think they have a God given right to plough on toward oncoming pedestrians regardless.

Quite often I feel like I am the weakest link in this slow pedestrian version of Red Rover and frequently find myself putting my life at risk by stepping into the road or diving into hedgerows to
allow others to pass. Even when I see people approaching when I’m walking two abreast I obligingly step into the road or attempt to form a single file but it seems, and often feels like, I am the only one who does this.

I’ve attempted to hold my ground in the past. But there is only so much sour faced unapologetic abuse one can put up with and I always end up reverting to the game of Don’t Get Killed by stepping into the road.

Is it just me? Am I the only one that puts up with this rudeness? Surely when you see people approaching when you are walking and the path is too narrow to accommodate everyone, the right thing to do is everyone form single file to allow people to pass without causing death or injury? Or is it that people today are impatient? Wary of strangers? Or simply participants in some deadly game I am unaware of?

I checked the internet and found a number of resources that tell me that pavement etiquette is an actual thing and the issue is global.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pedestrian_etiquette

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-28352045

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-highway-code/rules-for-pedestrians-1-to-35#general-guidance-rules-1-to-6

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Comments

 
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From:novemberbug
Date:22nd February 2017 21:29 (UTC)
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M and I go into single file, it varies as to who goes in front. I tend to move towards the inside track if I think the people walking towards me aren't likely to move into single file. It's a bit passive-aggressive, but it usually works.
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From:fj_warren
Date:23rd February 2017 09:41 (UTC)
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I've noticed that all ages seem to regard the pavement as something they bought at the local supermarket and hang on to their 'presumed' patch for all they are worth. There are decent souls out there who do move, as I do myself, but they seem to be getting fewer these days.

I prefer to walk on the left side of a pavement with the gentleman walking to my right. That way I'm saved from being splashed with mud being kicked up by the horses hooves and the carriage wheels. This is Cornwall after all!
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From:boyzici
Date:23rd February 2017 11:05 (UTC)
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I usually duck behind my partner when we are walking side by side. The downside is he is really not observant, he can seemingly only deal with one thing at once, so if we are chatting he won't have a clue what is happening around him. In order to duck behind him, I'll slow down and then move across. He will always see me slow down and then slow himself, so we are still shoulder to shoulder

I think I need a new system
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From:zoefruitcake
Date:23rd February 2017 12:12 (UTC)
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I will usually back down for anyone over 18 but below that I expect them to move for me
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From:bopeepsheep
Date:26th February 2017 21:42 (UTC)
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I walk with a stick and have trouble moving sideways. In theory this means I should be the last person to deviate from the path I'm on, but in practice means people just grind to a halt in front of me if I don't move, because I am INVISIBLE. Even with green hair. So I drop behind people or just stand still, whichever is easier.

(While we're at it, please pass people with single sticks on the side away from their stick. It's easier to move sideways towards the stick rather than away from it - which requires putting the stick in front of one's body in many cases, a ridiculous position for stability - for most of us.)

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