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Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Artful Augmentation of Automobile Operator's Ataxia

Monday afternoon I was out for a standard recovery jog... a few hills, a little single track... but mainly flat and paved with many cars around. I enjoy solitude for its... well solitude; but there is something to say for urban running as well. You have your Ipod- I have my vehicular traffic. So don't judge me on this one!

I was plodding along- nursing a tight calf. Stopping when needed to stretch it out and soak in the trees, the grass, the uncombusted fumes. All good things. I made the final right turn in my run and was headed into those last 20 minutes of the effort when I joined the main section of heavy traffic. Sidewalk running at its best.

It was required in the interest of my personal safety to check over my left shoulder for turning vehicles at every retail location entrance. They could be coming or going or crossing and I was set on not adding to their point totals. On a normal day I would just zip through with darting deftness, avoiding being on the business end of a bumper. But Monday I was feeling particularly at ease with taking breaks. This led to my yielding the terrain to the cars attempting to occupy my running space.

As I approached the Staples location I saw a young lass in the turning lane headed toward me. She was stopped and waiting for her moment so I stopped so as to not interfere with her moment. One opposing lane was stopped for her to make this move, the other was 'clear'. She hit the gas and sped across one lane- only to discover that another car was now in lane #2. This driver did not see her and was speeding. I imagine they saw each other at about the same point. At that point, they each hit their brakes- HARD.

She was soon sitting, stopped... in the middle of lane #2. He was screeching to a... well not stop exactly- but screeching to a slow-er. Then, he thumped into her. CRUNCH!!!

Now, because I yielded the way not only did this accident potentially occur... maybe, or not??? but more importantly (everyone was okay)... I am now a witness to the wreck and am standing there in sweat-soaked running garb. Soon enough I was down the road again- just another adventure in a series of steps. You never know what will happen in an hour on the roads!

I am left wondering how many points a runner gets for contributing to this type of door bender? Certainly there is an art to it...


  1. Wow. Good thing everyone was ok. I've yet to see any real accidents while running, but I've seen a few close calls (and been a part of a few close calls myself).

    So, did you end up having to stop and give a statement?

    I run 80% of my runs on sidewalks and I recently bought a RoadId for a similar reason that you elude to in the post. Gives me piece of mind anyway.

  2. You crack me up . . . "But Monday I was feeling particularly at ease with taking breaks. This led to my yielding the terrain to the cars attempting to occupy my running space." Sean . . . you're sounding a little like me here! Watch out! :-)


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