If I’m in a car trying to get out of a side road, and another car slows to let me out, I thank them by raising a hand. They didn’t have to do it after all, so I want to acknowledge their thoughtfulness.
If, in my pedestrian guise, I’m crossing the road where I shouldn’t and a vehicle slows or even stops to allow me safe passage, then they may even get a mouthed ‘thank you’.
But if the driver of a car has slowed down and stopped as I attempt to traverse a zebra crossing – you know, as they are obliged by law to do – and is expecting even a passing acknowledgment of their selfless deed then THEY CAN FUCK RIGHT OFF!
I’m not thanking someone for not breaking the law and not illegally hitting me with his or her vehicle and not maiming me. By that logic I should be thanking every human being I pass on the street for not punching me squarely in the face.
My decision to cross the road as you happened to be approaching at speed has inconvenienced you to the tune of 2–3 seconds. Perhaps applying the brakes has cost you 0.04 pence of petrol and a fraction of a millimetre of tyre wear. However, it is my sad yet important duty to inform you that these wounding inconveniences do not constitute a level of sacrifice that one should be praised for, especially when the only alternative to this heroic course of action is to commit a criminal offence.
Quite frankly, you should be thanking me for waiting to see if you’d slow down and stop rather than testing my luck by boldly striding into the middle of the road armed only with the flimsy assumption that you knew the basics of the highway code, and hoping that this would serve to avoid the otherwise unfairly stacked contest between your speeding vehicle and my surprised yet stationary face.
And don’t you dare shake your head with disdain as I proceed from curb to curb without showing some kind of appreciation for your actions. What the hell do you want, a round of applause for not perpetrating a hit and run? No sorry, what am I saying… It wouldn’t be a hit and run, would it? You’d stand over my broken body as it twitched with the faintest signs of life, smugly announcing that you had called the emergency services and that an ambulance was on its way. And before I drifted into unconsciousness as a result of the searing pain you’d expect a gurgled “thank you” wouldn’t you?
I hate you, self-entitled driver. I hate you a lot.