Please, Don’t Smell the Roses.

September 13th, 2010 by Kahliah Laney

New Yorkers walk faster than cars move along the autobahn but a constant flow of rubbernecking, camera-clicking, foot-dragging tourists can make sidewalks in New York more congested than California’s I-5 at rush hour.

Earlier this year, a few New Yorkers, fed up with ambling-out-of-towners, designated separate sidewalk space for natives and visitors. The tourist lane was popular with some locals and even got a nod of approval from Mayor Bloomberg. The lanes were a hoax forged by a theater group but apparently the deep-seated loathing of slow walkers was no act. An August 15 New York Post article even cited slow walkers as a top annoyance among New Yorkers.

But slow walkers are not unique to New York. One blogger in London said meandering morons make his “piss boil.” And to be fair, tourists are not the only violators. Moms, en masse, with baby buggies; the grandma with the utility cart that is bigger than her; or the people who walk in pairs like they are entering the damn ark, stopping you from passing by – they are all guilty parties.

There are multiple Facebook groups dedicated to this gripe, with thousands of members, most wishing slow walkers a slow death – okay, not really. But, according to a French medical study, people over the age of 65, who walk slowly, are more likely to die from cardiovascular related diseases than people who walk faster. Granny had better pick up the pace or she might have to pick up a pacemaker.

Unfortunately, slow movers won’t all croak at once. Slow walkers, especially those planning to visit New York City in the near future, heed this advice. New Yorkers, if you are going to live here, you have to accept the city’s appealing – great food, fashion and Broadway – as well as its appalling – pooping pigeons, mice with moxie and slow traipsing travelers. So the next time a tour bus unloads directly in your path to Starbucks on your 10-minute break, don’t start the third world war, just keep calm and carry on.

Comments are closed.