So I don't think I've mentioned this before, but I am a hardcore walker. This sounds inappropriate. Let me explain.
When the weather is nice, I walk pretty much everywhere. To work, from work, to the grocery store, gym, walks on my lunch break, etc. This is in addition to my running schedule, so I spend a good deal of time each day on sidewalks.
Since I spend so much time walking about, I have developed a certain degree of shall we say, posessiveness about crosswalks and the "ok to cross" symbol.
The minute I see this little guy, my feet hit the street. I give no consideration to drivers. I don't care if you are trying to make a right hand turn, I am walking. And sometimes, I *might* try and beat the very end of the crosswalk, when the red hand is blinking. I first realized this wasn't normal to have so much of a free wheeling crosswalk attitude last year, when I was walking with my supervisor on a midday errand (read: Starbucks trip). I crossed the street at the very end of a crosswalk and the light turned green as we were almost to the opposite side. A car was so close to hitting me that the brakes screeched. My supervisor yelled, I kept walking and didn't bat an eyelash.
"Sarah how are you not freaked out right now?"
"I was in a crosswalk - they had to stop."
It was brought to my attention after this incident that most people don't react so strongly. To each his own. Since that day, there have been many other times where I have yelled at drivers "THIS IS A CROSSWALK" [hand gesture towards glowing white man walking] and one particular morning where I banged on the hood of a van full of school children who attempted to strike me in the hip. Not my finest hour, but the driver was an ass. Thanks to all these occurences, my coworkers have determined that a crosswalk catastrophe will most likely be my demise.
After what happened yesterday during my run, I honestly wouldn't be surprised.
I was running near my house at a busy intersection. The light had JUST turned green, so my crosswalk time was just beginning. I started to run across the street, and then saw a cab pull a "Pittsburgh left" as I was mid-crosswalk. The driver had no intention of stopping when he saw me, so I was yelling my normal THIS IS A CROSSWALK and gesticulating wildly, I was forced to take a step to the outside to avoid his back tire. In doing so, my left foot hit a pothole, my ankle twisted and I came within an inch of biting it in the middle of the street. Fortunately I was able to walk it off within a block, but my crosswalk passion has only become stronger.
Fingers crossed I can make it to the half marathon (10 days eek) without being struck by a car.