Recently, Dan Woog wrote a piece decrying the fact that Westporters seem to prefer walking on the street to the sidewalk. What he might have added is "walking on the wrong side of the street."

The other night after dark, while driving on Route 33, I came around a bend and narrowly missed a man jogging in a black track suit on the right-hand side of the road -- with his back to the traffic flow. I almost didn't see him, and he had no idea I was coming up behind him so he made no effort to move off the roadway. This incident seems to be the rule, rather than the exception.

Just as people don't seem to know table manners anymore, it appears they also do not know the safe and proper way to walk or run on a street. That is, walking or running on the left-hand side of the street, facing the oncoming traffic. That way, the pedestrian sees vehicles coming; the motorists know the pedestrian sees them coming, and the possibility of an tragic accident is minimized.

This is especially important when it is dark, when there is more than one pedestrian in a group, and when the pedestrians are wearing headphones which further reduce their awareness of their surroundings. Just plain common sense.

Not an issue of major import -- until someone gets hit by a car.

Robert W. Mitchell