Once upon a time, 2 runners headed out for a training run. They were preparing themselves for the hilly course of the Hambletonian Marathon & Good Times Trotters Relay they would be running in a few short weeks. The morning was beautiful, warm enough to still wear shorts and a tank, but cool enough that you didn’t drown in your own sweat. The women tackled a Category 5 incline with nary a problem. (Well, maybe a bitch of a knee, stupid side stitch, and some shin splints, but that’s just par for the course so they don’t count.)
After turning around to head the 3 miles back to their starting point, they encountered <insert ominous music here> The Douchecanoe.
We’ve all seen this guy driving around. He’s overweight, but thinks he’s god’s gift to womankind. He can’t actually afford a sports car, so he soups up a Chevy Malibu, Subaru Impreza, or Honda Civic using the cheapest kit he can find using his grandma’s Amazon Prime account.
He zips that car up and down the streets in his small town, showing all the tweenagers how cool he is. We probably don’t all know the same one, but we all know one. Sadly, there are many.
The Douchecanoe that the two badass Mama runners came across was driving a red car. Civic? Malibu? Maybe a GT? Hell, it could have been a Grand Prix for all they knew, because all they could see was the fact that it was coming directly at them as they ran as close to edge of the road without being in the super-slanted, rutted, grass and dirt embankment next to the road. It was a long, straight road. It was in farmland where there weren’t many cars on the road. They ran against the little traffic there was. There was no traffic coming from behind them. But still, the Douchecanoe in the red car stayed dead-set on staying as close to the edge of the road as he possibly could, pointing directly at the two shocked-as-shit runners. WTF?
The runners stood their ground as he came closer and closer. As he just barely moved aside at the very last minute, the runners made very unladylike gestures in his direction. He hung is big fat head out the window yelling at them that they shouldn’t be out there.
The runners were pissed off. “Asshole” was the word of the day. The previous 4 miles had seen many other drivers being very courteous to the 2 runners. The runners would move when they could and cars and trucks gave them space and slowed down appropriately when they could. What was the Douchecanoe’s problem?
The runners continued on their way, but the Douchecanoe returned.
He turned his car around to hassle the women again. He insisted that the runners should have moved aside. The runners insisted that he should have given them the clearance that would have been so easy to provide. The Douchecanoe said the gestures were very unladylike. The pissed off runners reminded him that it is un-gentlemanlike to try to run people off the road. If he had lingered for a second longer, they would have started copying his license number and calling the police, but the Douchecanoe sped off to buy himself more Axe body spray and Monster energy drinks, instead.
The runners were bummed and angry for the whole rest of the run. Maybe even the rest of the day. Maybe even 2 days later when one of the runners was still ticked off enough to blog about it.
So to the non-runners who drive on roads where there are walkers, runners, cyclists or people doing the goddamn tango if they want to: We’ll give you space, you give us space. We know that sometimes you can’t move to accommodate us. We’ll dive into the shitty brambles if we have to, but don’t make us do that if you can simply and safely move slightly to the left. We share the road and you’ve got a big box of metal and airbags around you. We’ve got squishy bits and breakable bones that we can’t afford to break when we have families to take care of.