It’s called living in Boston. Unbeknownst to the Mad Biologist, we read that some mental health professionals believe ‘sidewalk rage’ is a psychiatric disorder:
Researchers say the concept of “sidewalk rage” is real. One scientist has even developed a Pedestrian Aggressiveness Syndrome Scale to map out how people express their fury. At its most extreme, sidewalk rage can signal a psychiatric condition known as “intermittent explosive disorder,” researchers say. On Facebook, there’s a group called “I Secretly Want to Punch Slow Walking People in the Back of the Head” that boasts nearly 15,000 members….
Signs of a sidewalk rager include muttering or bumping into others; uncaringly hogging a walking lane; and acting in a hostile manner by staring, giving a “mean face” or approaching others too closely, says Leon James, a psychology professor at the University of Hawaii who studies pedestrian and driver aggression.
How one interprets the situation is key, researchers say. Ragers tend to have a strong sense of how other people should behave. Their code: Slower people keep to the right. Step aside to take a picture. And the left side of an escalator should be, of course, kept free for anyone wanting to walk up.
I think it’s nuts to bump into people or otherwise being physically aggressive, if for no other reason that some people will bump back. Hard. It’s also a waste of time–just go around them.
Having said that, I think there are a lot of inconsiderate people out there. If you see someone carrying something, or running to catch a train, be considerate and let them by.
Punching people in the back of the head makes you an asshole (not to mention a criminal). But if Jimmy Carter could “lust in his heart”, then I say, let dreamers dream!