Luck of the Irish

I'm not sure what it is - maybe sleep deprivation by DST - but I've had two semi-close-calls with vehicles on my early morning runs this week, which are almost always through neighborhoods. (it's not really a wise idea to run on the paths after dark.)

Please don't tell my mother.

This morning was actually a little scary. A sedan was driving on a smaller residential street that terminates at Great Star Drive. We were running across said space. Instead of slowing to stop, the car kept right on rolling. A quicker-of-mind running companion put his arm out quickly to stop me, and the car stopped pretty much where we would have been.

Appropriate hand gestures (not the rude ones, surprisingly) were made on both sides.

I will also add that it was light outside (maybe around 7:00-ish, the sun was mostly up), we were a cluster of five runners (so more visible), and while I hadn't donned my reflective vest, I was wearing a combination of mostly light-colored dark clothing. (ie, I was not wearing an invisible pedestrian outfit)

Now, I understand that the responsibility goes both ways. I know that pedestrians are not always safe. I know it's better to assume that a car is not going to turn or stop or whatever, because a runner never wins in runner vs. car. I know that choosing to run on a road requires planning and attention, and that certain roads/shoulders/etc are not appropriate for pedestrian use.

I'm also pretty sure that no one wants a SwimWriteRun-sized dent in the hood of their car.

But if the driver hadn't clearly been going for a "rolling stop", he would have stopped at the appropriate distance. And there would have been no stress.

It makes me angry to hear complaints about motorcyclists, bicyclists, or pedestrians from drivers. Particularly as a runner or a motorcyclist, I've often seen cars start to behave erratically when they realize I'm there. It's better to drive normally. Do what you're supposed to do. That's what the runner or motorcyclist is expecting and planning for. Failing to do so creates an unsafe situation. Look around you before you proceed. Communicate your decisions with blinkers and adequate stop time. Understand right of way laws. 

End rant (which I'm pretty sure was just preaching to the choir anyway. I mean, you're reading SwimWriteRun. You are clearly awesome, and not the sort of person I am ranting about at all). 

Also, today is some kind of holiday. Liberalia, I think. ;)

If you're out celebrating, enjoy and be safe


  1. Ok I am not your mother and I won't tell your mother.

    BUT I am a mother and I've known you a long time, long enough to care for you like a mother so PLEASE be careful and ALWAYS assume that the person behind the wheel is a jerk!

    So glad you are ok.

  2. Man! I am so with you. It's easy to drive like there are nothing but cars around, but that's never the case, and it's only a tragedy when someone gets hurt.