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“Hey, Sorry. I Was Kind of Walking Here” and Other Passive Phrases to Prevent Getting Run Over


Photo by Mollie Benn

As a shy girl who consistently correlates her naive courteousness with having “southern charm,” I have mastered the art of avoiding catastrophe while remaining composed and kind. It is difficult to remain this way though in Philadelphia where the people move quickly and the vehicles move even quicker. Some may say the drivers are reckless but I say the pedestrian is equally complacent in crosswalk accidents. There is no reason to be aggressive when trying to communicate with impeding drivers. Here are some passive alternatives that are equally effective in preventing collisions:

“Hey, sorry. I was kind of walking here”

“Excuse me”


“My bad”

*Approach the oncoming car looking really unsure. When they let you go, slightly nod your head, give a little wave, and mouth the words “thank you” as you cross*

*Motion for them to pass first*

“You can go”

*In a low, unintelligible voice* “Watch out”

*Keep looking up and down from your phone until the car stops and it is clear that you can go*

*Just let the car hit you* (Note: it’s better to sacrifice yourself and be kind than to stick up for yourself and be rude)