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Entry 11/10/2014 12:46:41 PM - Mentat 788
It's a long weekend here in the Tundras of New England. Veteran's Day falling toward the beginning of the week allows me a little peace and tranquility from the nutcases, douchebags, assholes and generally the sort of people that give me that routine bolster of misanthropy that makes me just so charming and curmudgeonly. I saw some interesting sites through the old neighborhood that I lived in more than 25 years ago (one of which I shared the picture on Instagram). I had some interesting nostalgia seeing the old house on Vernon Street and a shade envious that the house looks so much better in navy blue with lemon yellow trimming than the jaundice yellow and shit brown trimming that it had when I lived there.
Hell, the daily walks through the neighborhood were doing me a world of better as I was getting regular exercise while checking out the sights of the area, when during one of my walks to the supermarket for a couple of necessities as I got the crossing signal began my saunter across Eagle Street when some mad cow with a phone attached to his ear and looking only to the traffic that had already been stopped almost hit me when I was in the crosswalk. He didn't look and it was apparent he didn't care for anything other than the end of his nose and the opportunity to take a right on red. His attention only seemed to be with whoever was on his phone and the opposing traffic that was stopped for the crossing signal.
Believe me when I say, I yelled loud enough to get everyone's attention at the signal. One woman who just took the phone off her ear at the stop light, shook her head in disbelief as she witnessed the man's ignorance to the intersection and the pedestrian.
I simply looked at her without a smile and thought "pot, meet kettle. You're both black…" As I finished crossing the street with the modest fear of someone else wanting to take a right turn and not seeing me -- the pedestrian -- in the crosswalk.
I went about my life as I do, fuming a bit at the inconsideration and the self-centeredness of the world at large.
The next day with earbuds on and softer than normal, I went about my walk for exercise and other necessities and sundries through the next four days. What I saw has not only disgusted me, but in a way has made me reinforce the Luddite qualities I have been slowly picking up as I'm over the half-century mark.
I have seen at least three people on the side/back roads of my neighborhood, trying to hide their texting activities as they're driving. One of which is a repeat offender, almost hitting me not two weeks prior as he was paying more attention to his phone hidden against the front of his steering wheel than the road in from of him.
I have seen various women with that glazed over look in their eyes as they hold their cell phones to their ears with their shoulder oblivious to not only their shrieking children in the car, but the world around them in general.
I've seen various men with that glazed over look as well and demonstrating various levels of disgust at people in the roads cutting them off because those people have the right of way if the driver on the cell phone were actually paying attention to their driving.
I've seen couples in the car with both of them on the phone ignoring each other while in their own world.
I've counted more than a handful of men and women at the supermarket walking like zombies with the phone attached to their ear, muttering "yeah…" in a way that to me seems to only be half-listening to even the people on the phone.
I've watched these mobile zombies on the street, swinging bags (shopping, or personal handbags) in one hand with the other hand attaching the phone to their ear as they're walking sidewalks and even crossing the street completely oblivious of oncoming traffic.
And if that don't beat all, I've seen people on bikes trying to juggle balancing on two wheels with one hand holding a phone up to their ear while riding their bikes on pedestrian sidewalks. Or better, in the bike lanes of the road going against traffic.
I'm not even talking about the ones that generate more noise pollution as they hold the phones away from their ear and talk loud enough to compete with the jackhammers being used on road work here in the city. Those lovely examples of humanity make such a cacophony of noise at places like Kennedy Plaza (the central transit hub in Providence, RI) that it's impossible for me to think straight even with my earbuds in and have the volume on my music set to full blast. But I covered this elsewhere in my rants against children thinking the world is their playground, sort of here.
It leaves me asking the question, "Seriously… What's so bloody important that you have to have that phone attached to your ear?"
I remember seeing someone else rant about this not too long ago. It's not so much that it's important, it's the fact that people can't stand the feeling of being disconnected from their circle of friends. They want to be constantly connected. Have that constant input from friends, acquaintances, family and loved ones.
However, there's a line between acting responsibly and gross negligence because of self-centeredness; with many of the examples I've witnessed either teeter way too close to that line to gross over it so badly it leaves the transgressor in another part of the universe. And I ask them, "What's it going to take for you to snap the hell out of this before realize your irresponsible actions are going to hurt, maim and/or kill a human being?"
I'm not a fan of "Mommy Government". I have always believed that the best sort of government is the one that works on the principle that laws should be used to govern the general population, not police them. But more and more, I'm finding this "second class" attitude given to me and others walking the streets and trying to cross them… Well let's just say I've had more than enough of it that I'm thinking of wanting to do something about it. Be it activism. Be it deputization. Be it humiliation. I haven't decided yet what I want done about it. But when I do, I plan on making it a roar. Until the next time.