I get it. Some people despise running.
They think we’re members of some weird cult, with our flashy clothes and weird accessories and obsessions with PRs.
They don’t understand why we cover our cars in oddly coded stickers and magnets (what in the world is a 26.2?) or wear our race shirts to the grocery store.
They think we’re showing off, when really, it’s because we just want other members of our “cult” to recognize us as a member. It’s not a diss to anyone else, just our insecure selves whispering “I’m one of you…”
And I, as a runner, have no problem with non-runners. Until they have a problem with me. Especially when it puts me in danger.
Like yesterday – when for the first time in ages I went out on my favorite 10 mile loop, and had a moment I wasn’t sure I was gonna make it home.
Now, I get that some drivers get annoyed having to share the road, so I am a courteous runner. I stay in the shoulder and I move over if I can.
So I was mystified yesterday when a driver deliberately came at me.
It was on my favorite 1/2 mile stretch of this street. It’s wide. And there’s not much traffic. I was on the inside edge of a wide shoulder on a wide street.
So I have no idea what possessed the driver of the dark grey Chevy SUV (and yes I’m kicking myself for not getting the license plate – but I was too furious to think of it in that moment) to veer directly at me and force me into the trees.
For a moment I thought well maybe he (she?) dropped his coffee or cellphone and wasn’t being a malicious douchecanoe so I yelled and waved my arms and he kept coming. And once he was satisfied he had done enough, swerved back onto the road and went on. I don’t think I’ve ever sworn and yelled quite as loudly as I did.
And my next thought was that I was glad my husband was scheduled to meet me in 15 minutes up the road because had I NOT made it out of that situation in one piece, he at least was nearby.
I suppose I should thank the moron for the adrenaline rush that resulted in a 9:18 mile, but really i’d like to hunt the jerk down and have a conversation. (Besides the resulting drop after the adrenaline rush caused some painfully slow miles)
Because no matter how much you might despise runners (or cyclists, or dog walkers), ya gotta share the road. And that kind of behavior is never acceptable. It’s stupid and dangerous.
Happy Monday friends – and be careful out there. Please!