What Happened To Courtesy?

Wow, some people. You know how when you’re biking down a trail and about to pass someone you should say, “Passing on the left” or “Coming around” or something?  I always do that, even if there’s plenty of room to go around; it prevents startling them if they’re deep in concentration, and don’t realize that a bike is coming up behind them.  I usually add a friendly “Good morning.”

Most folks indicate appreciation with a “Thank you” or a wave of acknowledgement.

But this morning one jogger responded angrily, “You’ve got the whole damn path!” True, he was on the side and I had plenty of room to pass.  But I wasn’t asking him to move: I was just alerting him, as I do, that a bike was about to appear beside him.

It’s a courtesy to alert folks that you’re about to pass them.  It’s also a courtesy to respond graciously.

And by the way, we are mighty fortunate to have these wonderful trails; it’s a big part of what makes this such a special place. The people on the trails — most of them — are pretty special, too. 

Jeff Harrison


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