Do you play well with others?
As most people do, I try to do things throughout my life that are on the safe side. I try to avoid doing too many risky things so as not to risk injury to myself or other people or property. I also try not to do things that affect other people in a negative way. My parents taught me to use my good manners and I have taught my kids the same things. We avoid interfering with other people and their actions in a selfish way. Do you have the same beliefs?
I recently saw a driver sit in the driver’s seat with the driver’s door wide open. I had to pass them to park my vehicle, but the area was narrow because another vehicle was parked opposite them on the street. I tapped the horn to get their attention, but they didn’t look up or close their door. I tapped the horn again; they looked up at me; then looked back at what they were doing without closing their door. I guess they either didn’t care about being a cooperative driver; or parker. My concern was if they were going to exit the vehicle without looking as I was passing by. I didn’t want to risk hitting them with my vehicle.
Shortly after I squeezed by them and parked my vehicle, I saw two vehicles approach one another near this vehicle and the driver in the parked vehicle still had the door wide open. With the parked vehicle still opposite them, it became a stalemate. No one moved. No one honked. It stayed like that for close to a minute until one driver decided to proceed through. How selfish and unthinking can you be as a driver? I think the part that made it tough was they acted very careless to themselves, their vehicle and to others. They didn’t seem to care about other drivers who needed to pass their vehicle with their driver’s door open.
When I’m teaching my students at Young Drivers of Canada, I ask them to open the driver’s door with their right hand and glance both in their side mirror and blind spot before opening the door. This way they can see if another vehicle or a cyclist is approaching. However, leaving your door wide open for minutes at a time for no apparent reason and blocking other drivers from passing is a selfish action. The danger in this is that someone could actually bump into the open door and perhaps severely injure someone if their foot or leg was outside the vehicle.
I also live in an area that only allows parking on one side of the street. Every 15 days or so, you have to park on the opposite side of the street. This driver also owns the van parked on the opposite side of the vehicle they are sitting in. They are actually causing the entire situation themselves. I think the natural feeling is to close your door to allow other vehicles to pass safely, but maybe that’s the opinion of the minority of drivers and not the majority.
It’s not rare for me to see this driver act the way they do. I’ve spoken to them a number of times over the years, as a good neighbour, to share the area and respect the other neighbours, but they ignored me and walked away. I’ve stopped talking to them now about these things because it doesn’t work. They just don’t seem to understand about being a polite driver.
I know this may sound like a rant, but it’s not. I’m not the only person in the area that has noticed this behaviour from them. The bylaw officers have been called on them a number of times because of their parking choices and they have received fines for their parking actions. They’re out of pocket for their rude and selfish actions. What will it take for them to realize they have to learn to play well with others?