I live four miles from my office and I walk the woofer down and back just about every day.
Over the past few weeks a phenomenon has become more and more obvious… of course, now that I’ve noticed it, I see it everywhere and it’s beginning to wind me up.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. ‘Oh no, here comes another one of the old curmudgeon’s rants about nothing, but this time I really do think I’m on to something.
For example, I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing to listen to your i-Pod whilst walking and I often do just that myself… so I don’t think I’m being grumpy for no reason.
And that reason is mobile ‘phones: specifically texting and/or reading emails and/or the internet whilst walking on a public footpath. Just recently it’s been getting beyond a joke. Several times over the past few days I’ve almost been walked into by people concentrating on their ‘phones rather than on what’s in front of them.
I can spot them a mile off now and I’ve started walking in a dead straight line if that is going to intersect them. I know that’s a bit (for ‘a bit’ read ‘very’) petty but I can’t help myself… I actually think it’s just a little bit of revenge as they suddenly become aware of my presence bearing down on them, look up guiltily and move to one side.
But there are so many people who do it now and not by any means the stereotypical person you’d expect to be obsessed by their ‘phone: you know; the ones who wear baseball caps. It’s all sorts. I nearly bumped into a elderly lady yesterday as she was texting… well, who knows what she was texting.
There must be some comparable statistics available from the NHS.
How many injuries were treated in A & E caused annually by people bumping into each other prior to 1995 and post 1995?
I’ll bet the statistics show an alarming increase and it’s probably causing Enterprise Britain untold millions in lost hours.
But what’s to be done? Well, we’ve banned the use of mobile ‘phones whilst driving, we could do the same whilst walking on a public thoroughfare. I mean, what can honestly be so important that the information has to be read now whilst perambulating?
It’s quite draconian I suppose and I certainly wouldn’t want to ban mobile usage in, say, a café… I often like reading the news on my ‘phone. But something needs to be done about it.
What do you think?
P.S. I fully realise that I might have gone over the top and that I need to get out more!