I get it. It has been unseasonably nice out and this has inspired the entire population of Providence to spend their remaining sunshine-filled free time
in my way outside. What I don’t understand is why this addition of a few extra Fahrenheit degrees consistently translates into total loss of social decency. I’m looking at you, everyone who hangs out in India Point Park. As the key to any successful rant is order and clarity, I have very carefully laid out my complaints in an organized letter to you, the fine patrons of India Point Park:
1. Let’s talk sidewalks. I think we can all agree that the sidewalk is a shared space and so, if it’s not too much to ask, I would very much appreciate it if you stopped choosing to walk directly down the middle. I propose that implicit driving laws hold on any/all public sidewalks: 1. stay in your lane, 2. don’t be a fucking idiot. Do not inconvenience everyone around you by walking directly in the center of the sidewalk even though you are only one person and not the king of Rhode Island. Keeping to the right allows you and the person walking towards you to pass each other with ease and maybe even a wave or hello if you’re one of those weird friendly people from some middle-of-nowhere town where mass murders tend to take place. If you were a car blatantly driving down the middle of the street, other cars would honk and eventually hit you. So yeah, couple I punched in the back and then flipped off last week, automobile rules hold for pedestrians.
2. Control your dog/child/annoying thing that lies directly at kicking level. People invented leashes for a reason: children. I’m kidding. But seriously, keep your pets on a leash. The last thing I need when I’m running is your dog deciding at the exact wrong moment to cross my path. I will trip over it, not care, and then have to listen to you yell at me about animal cruelty when I have a bruised knee to tend to. Nobody needs this. Same thing goes for small children. I’m not promoting child-leashes (although they are hilarious), but really how hard is it to strap your child into a stroller or even just hold its hand? It’s a child for a reason—it doesn’t know any better. It should not be allowed to make its own decisions about where to roam freely.
3. PDA is unacceptable (if either member of the relationship is as old as the second member’s parent.) This is addressed to a very specific, but very real couple who frequents India Point Park. Seeing an adorable father and daughter together on a Wednesday afternoon is a beautiful thing, until they start to make out and then all you can think about is how much you hope they aren’t related. Blanket suggestion: if it would have been illegal three years ago, don’t do it in public. Unless it’s marijuana… you do you, Washington.
This list is not long. But while its length may be small, its message is not. India Point Park is slowly turning into some sort of terrible alternate universe dominated entirely by animals, toddlers, pedophiles, and, worst of all, slow people. The time to act is now. The next time you see a little kid on the loose or in your way, take a stand. Pick the child up and force him into the arms of his parent. If this parent makes some offhand comment about you touching their child, feel free to point out the old man inappropriately engaging with a minor just over the hill. Politely suggest that, instead of harassing you for generously saving her child, she might consider calling the police.