Points of body contact while walking the sidewalks of NYC

Points of body contact while walking the sidewalks of NYC

Sure it’s a cliche to talk about walking through the maze of people that make the sidewalks of NYC a little crazy some days. But now that there are even more people walking around these days I thought I’d share some observations about something everyone goes through. It’s that moment when there’s two people heading in different directions and there’s only space for one person. There’s a number of different versions of people bumping into each other, some more malicious than others. Above I’ve illustrated four different hit zones that I’ve seen and what they could possibly mean.

BRUSH: Fabric comes into contact, normal
No harm meant, it’s just that both people are in a hurry and they’re trying to make the best of the situation.

NUDGE: Arm bone is felt, statement being made
It would have been just as easy to turn slightly in but the person chose not to. There’s not a lot difference with the brush but because there was intention to not move they we’re letting you know that they know you know they’re going to stand their ground.

CLIP: Shoulders are involved, possibly swearing
This is pretty aggressive, both parties were probably in a bad mood to begin with and this is only going to accelerate the ill will. If this contact is made there’s a 50/50 chance one of the two people doesn’t live in Manhattan.

KNOCKOUT: One of the people is not getting back up
This is pretty rare and there’s one of two reasons why it happens. The first is that a person has their head down texting someone and they don’t realize what’s in front of them. The second is a bit more malicious. Neither person wants to make the first move in this game of pedestrian chicken. They probably been through the stare down before and sort of expected the other person to back down—and apparently that’s what the other person thought too.

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