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The sidewalk incident

July 15th, 2009

This is another rant on the lack of common courtesy in the world, in general and in Singapore in particular… so if you are tired of listening to me complain about how fucked up most people are… move along and ponder the rainbow puking panda of explore… [flickr.com].

Still with me?

Good.  Let me set the stage… Candice and I took Victoria for a walk last night, we do this most nights — well maybe not most but a lot.  On our walk we traverse a long sidewalk along a plot of undeveloped land that is quite old and not very wide.  Two people can walk side by side comfortably but no extra room.  Additionally it has been quite wet in Singapore recently, raining often so the ground, while not muddy was wet.

Now for some visual help in explaining this particular fuck-headed rude behavior, yes I’m a geek I made a picture to help explain…:

The sidewalk incident as it happened.

As Candice, Victoria and I walked along said sidewalk another couple, a teenage girl and guy, approached us headed in the opposite direction.  This can be seen in step 1 of the figure above.  Nothing wrong with this, both the guy and I are walking next to our respective partners.  This makes conversation easier.  In this case the couple approaching us was even walking to their left — the appropriate orientation when walking in Singapore another oft-ignored guideline.

In step 2 you can see that both the guy and I have moved to our lefts.  I have moved further but he has begun to move left to allow for Candice, Victoria and I to pass on the right.  Great.

The problem, shown in step 3, is that he did not continue his move to the left.  Rather than getting behind the girl (or in front) for 30 seconds to allow us to pass easily, he was so obsessed with standing next to his girl that he managed to take up most of the sidewalk, thus forcing Candice and I to stop and wait or move off the sidewalk or… I don’t even know what he expected… But this is what he go:

“Get the fuck to the left you dip shit.  Have some fucking common courtesy and let other people use the sidewalk”

He kind of stared at me like a fish out of water… mouth opening slowly and eyes unable to focus.  We walked on.

The girl said something rule a few second later so I yelled back “shut the fuck up.”

As a side note my asshole attitude in cases like this has been developed after 4+ years in Singapore dealing with people who are so programmed by the nanny state in so many aspects of their life that they can’t think on their own and have therefore lost all common courtesy and common sense.  I used to be much nicer about things like this — I’ve always complained about dip shits but now I’m like a Manhattanite…  Cussing at them releases my frustration and they are so brain dead it can’t hurt them.

Anyway, in the interest of public service this is how it should have happened:
The sidewalk incident as it should have happened

See?  Now we can pass each other with nary-a-problem, birds sing, babies laugh and the soft light of the sun shines down and a happy ending.

Maybe I’ll diagram the proper way to not-be-that-asshole-trying-to-shove-their-way-on-the-train-before-people-can-get-off for everyone’s benefit.  And what about the I-can’t-be-bothered-to-watch-where-I-am-going-because-I-am-too-busy-<playing a game on my DS|PSP or texting or watching something on my PMP> issue that seems to be so in vogue?  Well, I’m not saying there is a problem with this behavior but let’s take all the manhole covers off and see if the problem fixes itself [telegraph.co.uk].

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