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Plight of the Pedestrian: Part 2

Here is another (Part 1here) inherent drawback to pedestrianism (more below on the problem with terminology). Dudes have flashy-ass cars that change color, and rims that appear to spin backwards and everyone looks at them and says: ‘That is a crazy-ass lookin’ car, and inside that must be the driver‘. Some people skateboard, and so they are often seen on skateboards, or carrying skateboards, and people look at them and say: ‘Oh look, a skateboarder‘. Some people ride a push-bike/bicycle and they are all accessorized and fancy, so fancy that you can tell just from their dress and accessories that they are a rider or a bicyclist or whatever. They get to hang out on the street standing on their bikes chatting because they are all riders. So what if you are a walker? The problem with being a walker is that you are indistinct from a driver who is walking to his/her car. Once they get in their car: ‘Ah, I knew he was something: a driver‘. If you are a walker and standing on your feet on the sidewalk chatting without a bike or a skateboard or something, people would just think that you had nothing to do. Do you see what I’m getting at?

How do you distinguish a walker (stupid term)? The problem with being a walker is that you are indistinct from a driver who is walking to his/her car. There is no such concept analogous to a driver, or a skater, or whatever. Once the dude gets in his car: ‘Ah, I knew he was something: a driver‘. Or what if you are walking super fast with marching arms or jogging or whatever; you know what they are. They’re only doing that because they’ve been driving and sitting all day. But if you are a walker and walking or hanging around on your feet on the sidewalk, chatting, smelling the butterflies, without a bike or a skateboard or something, people would just think that you had nothing to do. Hence the negative connotations with the term ‘pedestrian’ (see my previous post about the problems with this term). Do you see what I’m getting at?

One of the problems I would like to address here is terminology. The word ‘pedestrian’ doesn’t even capture the concept I’m envisaging. Drivers are pedestrians when they are walking back and forth from their cars. I guess skateboarders are even kinda pedestrians. But then ‘walker’ doesn’t really capture it either, because the concept I have in mind isn’t limited to only walking. The concept I am trying to define is one who walks, takes buses, trains, subways, and isn’t averse to biking, but not as cliquey hipster thing, just as another means of transportation. Anyways, here is my candidate term that best captures this concept: an ambler. To amble is to “to go at a slow, easy pace; stroll; saunter” (dictionary.com). I’ll get there by some manner or means/route/etc. I’m not just going to hop in my car and plow through town honking and cutting off people and then fall out all over the place. An ambler. ‘Amble’ is at least better than ‘rambler’, or ‘drifter’. And what about ‘loiterer’? What the fuck?! You see what I mean – all these words for going slow by foot, or standing on feet have these loser connotations.

The problem I will address next time is: how to distinguish yourself (from all those silly-ass drivers and riders) as an ambler.