It is my belief that, whether it be in summer or in winter, extreme temperatures tend to make people dumber. (Generally speaking, anyway.)
Us lucky New Yorkers have (along with the majority of the country) experienced a case of bitter cold weather this week. While this tends to happen every so often, this particular “polar vortex” especially blows due to it’s falling during the work week.
And while we’re all aware of the nightmare that most of the country has endured during this vortex (i.e. school and business closings, trains stuck in snow drifts), this is not a political rant. This is about general stupidity.
I assure you, I love New York. But I can do without the lack of awareness that happens during these times. (It’s during these times that I am completely aware of the subway platform and how not to fall into it.)
Tuesday morning, the masses assembled obscene amounts of layers. Blind spots were left at the front door upon pulling on various puffy hoods and hats a Siberian hunter might wear.
Cut to the city streets with commuters bumping into each other, wishing they’d have a rearview mirror attached to their North Face hoodies.
I was fortunate enough to come across two most excellent souls on during of my commutes.
During my morning commute, a dapper fellow came to a halt at the top of the stairs leading into the subway to finish texting whoever could be so important to text when the temperature is “feels like” -11F. Hey jerk, this is rush hour. Step aside, finish your text, and put on some gloves for chrissakes. Didn’t you hear you shouldn’t have exposed skin?
On my commute home, another dapper fellow and I were crossing the street amidst a sparkling, shiny walk sign, while another fellow in a car decided to turn directly into the cross walk. The dapper man, who the driver almost hit, stopped and glared at the driver, which was then followed with the driver throwing his hands in the air and giving a verbal, “WHAT?!” Yes, he was getting visibly upset. In his heated car.
There is absolutely nothing to say about this. Call me kooky, but I’m pretty sure pedestrians have the right of way when it comes to a walk sign. Nothing should be more concerning to you in your moving automobile than obeying traffic laws during rush hour.
So, I hear the temps are supposed to rise again in the near future. While that’s all grand, can Mother Nature make sure it’s over a weekend or holiday, when dummies stay at home during extreme temps? And if not, can’t we all just obey the laws of common, simple humanity?