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How To Be a Pedestrian (21st Century Edition)

So, you're walking the city streets... congratulations! Because of you're selfless, well thought out lifestyle choice, you are now part of the larger community saving the planet, one step at a time! You also now have more disposable money left to buy trendy, yet unfashionable clothing AND occupy the moral high-ground with your friends (unless they ride a bicycle).

After a well exhausted round of patting yourself on the back, take a deep breath. Know now that walking in the modern city isn't nearly as pedestrian as it was when your parents walked. Times have changed. Be ready.

First off, before hitting the sidewalk, stop at your mirror. Your clothing should be uniform in it's dark, drab appearance. Your clothing should reflect the seriousness and intensity in you. Earth tones are acceptable, as they show the world your solidarity with the environment. Now is a good time to insert your ear buds. The thin white cords should be your only "pop" of color (other than the green Starbucks logo on your cup).

As you exit your apodment, look up and take in the day. Now stop. This is the last time that you should lift your head. Cue-up some inane game or social media on your i Phone, and give it your undivided attention. If you are walking a familiar route, you may now begin walking. If the route is new, activate Google Maps and follow the prompts.

While on the sidewalk, do not vary your speed based on conditions. Those walking faster, or riding a bicycle, can and must adjust to you. If something on your i Phone requires more intense scrutiny, stop immediately where you are. When foul insults are thrown at you, demonstrate your indifference by re-inserting your ear buds. When you decide to walk again, you may bump into things on the sidewalk. Make notes of each location / incident and compose / send and e mail to your city councilman. Demand that the offending objects be removed, or wrapped in pedestrian-safe padding.

At some point, you may note that the sidewalk has dropped a few inches. You may hear engine sounds, and perhaps a horn. This is a curb, and you are at an intersection where cars are. Take one step back, and scowl, looking very disturbed and put upon. Now, and only now, you may look up. DO NOT make eye contact with oncoming drivers. If there is a pole with a crosswalk button on it, smack it ferociously four to five times. The clang of you abusing the traffic safety device should reverberate throughout the intersection.

When the crossing light does not change immediately, step into the crosswalk anyway. The cars MUST stop for you, regardless of the constraints of physics. You have the right of way, and are morally superior to those that are driving. Ignore any horns, curses or tire screeches.

(Note: Some intersections have bright orange flags for pedestrian use, designed to enhance your visibility. Theoretically, the 14 oz fabric can stop a two ton vehicle. Avoid using these, as they will clash with your dark purple REI jacket and patent leather knee boots.)

Now, you may hear a voice calling your name. Or, your i Phone tells you that you have reached your destination. Congratulations! You made it! And you did it with all the style and vague indifference that sets you apart from the other dark-clad, hunched over oblivious hipsters.
Your friend may look perturbed, and even ask if your brought anything with you (i.e. wine, humus, etc.) Of course you didn't.

Hey, you're walkin' here!

Comments

Well, i'm a pedestrian;

I don't do "pats on the back".
I dress like a slob because well, that's what i am, and i rarely shave more than once per week. Image maintenance.
I usually walk with my eyes in the gutter.
"Don't lift your head"? Totally agree.

As for Joe public, and society as a whole, yeah.
 

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Winston
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