Crosswalks yet again

I fear, if you are always in your SUV and never afoot in this neighborhood we share, you grow tired of my harping on common driving courtesy, vis-à-vis your neighbors in crosswalks.

But I cannot stop writing about it because too many of you allegedly "nice" folks cannot, or will not, even heed the walk signs, much less display a little extra courtesy to your ambulatory brethren.

Today (six days before you read this), the rain is falling again and things get even dicier for pedestrians, especially the elderly amongst us.

I can remember when traffic always (or nearly always) stopped for pedestrians in Lower Queen Anne. Now, many of the new, cellphoning, SUV-driving Seattleites who have invaded us in the past decade don't even stop when the foot traffic has the shambling right of way and are inside the white lines of the crosswalk.

Just this morning, coming back from the driving range up at Interbay, I stopped to chat with an elderly lady who lives in the building next to mine.

As we talked, the walk light to cross Queen Anne Avenue toward Easy Street came on and we stepped off the curb.

Our progress was immediately halted by a young, clean-cut white boy's newish car. Oblivious to our presence, he was turning right onto Mercer without a care in the world.

Brandishing the golf clubs, I peered in at him through his back window.

Silently judging him, to quote the best line from a picture full of good lines, "Magnolia."

He looked away and drove on. No apology, not even the look of embarrassment some distracted cellphone drivers manage when they almost kill a pedestrian due to inattention. Maybe this fool thought the old lady and I were part of a big open-air computer game.

But worse was to come.

Two hours later, on the way to meet a friend at Zingaro's for coffee, I saw another young white man with the business-boy haircut turn his con-vertible, top up of course, in front of a blind older woman tentatively tap-ping her white cane in front of her as she tried to cross Mercer in front of Larry's. On the walk light, I might add.

If I had been a police officer, I would have chased this fool down and done what so many Seattle cops seem to be doing lately - give out a beatdown.

If anyone ever deserved an ass-whipping, it was this ignorant pup.

A blind woman.

There is nowhere so important to be going on a rainy fall morning in Seattle that you have the right to endanger the life of anybody; but a blind woman - my God. Quit worrying about illegal immigrants and let's start deporting all the rude a--h---s already in our midst.

I walk and talk my way around Seattle, waving at all and sundry in Lower Queen Anne. Friends of mine laughingly call me the mayor of this area because I seem to at least glancingly know so many people.

I don't want to see any of these others, my neighborly acquaintances out and about, many of them elderly, hurt or even killed, especially inside a crosswalk because you drivers can't be bothered to act like Northwesterners have always claimed to act - politely and with some at least surface, obligatory concern for others.

This is not New York or L.A. But every day it gets more like a poor copy of those two benighted places.

Put on your happy face when you climb behind the wheel of that unnecessary boat you drive and pay attention before you kill or main some innocent who is afoot in their city.

Rather than putting up cute little signs asking people to drive nicely, I think we should start patrols of muscular pedestrians authorized to pull folks driving inside crosswalks at the same time pedestrians are in there out of their rides to administer a little street justice.

I know I would have felt better this morning if I could have had a couple of minutes with the fella who scared the hell out of a blind lady.

Would have done my heart good.

[[In-content Ad]]