680News political affairs specialist John Stall on politics.See more blogs
Courtesy: a rarity on the road
There’s something that has been bothering me lately and I just want to get it off my chest.
I park my car underground in a residential apartment building close to the Rogers campus. I know that a number of my fellow employees do the same thing.
Because of my work hours, I am often trying to exit as others are arriving. As in most underground parking facilities there is not much room to negotiate so, as I am leaving, I often find myself facing another vehicle coming in. For some reason I always seem to be the one who backs up in order to let the other vehicle through and I have even pulled into empty parking spots to make room for a car coming in. And do you know what? Not once in the two years that I have been parking there has anyone, ANYONE, ever said thank you!! Not a look, a nod, a wave…nothing. I have even stared at them as they drive by, with a smile on my face, hoping for some sort of acknowledgement ….and nothing. They stare straight ahead as if I didn’t exist. I work with some of these people and I know that they are not normally rude, cold people … so what is going on?
I am noticing more and more that there is less and less common courtesy on the road. For example, trying to change a lane can be nearly impossible at certain times of the day. There are times when I have held my hands out the window in prayer hoping someone will take pity on me and allow me in. Once a friend of mine became so frustrated she held a $10.00 bill out the window, hoping that one of the vehicles streaming by would at least slow down long enough to allow her to move over.
I see driving courtesy as a two-way street (please excuse the pun). When someone does something nice for you on the roads it is really important to acknowledge that action. Otherwise, what is their incentive to do it again? A wave or a nod takes no time or trouble and it reinforces the courteous behavior.
This leads me to the other side of the street so to speak. Why should drivers continue to do nice things for others if it isn’t appreciated? Therefore we need to both continue to be courteous to other drivers and remember to respond when courtesy is extended to us.
You know, the next time I face a car coming into the underground parking I am almost tempted to go over to the driver and, in a pleasant non confrontational way, tell them that I will gladly move my car if they will say thank you. Because frankly, I am so tired of constantly accommodating other drivers, simply to have them totally dismiss my action.