Sunday was gorgeous. It was a perfect day for the Pedal on the Pier event that benefitted the Harold Robinson Foundation which sends kids to camp. This year my friend Lisa Brisse of State of the Heart Fitness (based out of the Loews Hotel) was again raising money for the HRF which was what brought me to the boardwalk and Pier.

This year the HRF raised over $561,000, which is an awesome achievement. The event looked like it was a blast for the participants and clearly was a benefit for the community.

It was a big draw for the participants and supporters this year, and as I went down to the Boardwalk and green space by the rings I could see it was big beach day for many people. The area was packed this weekend with people doing acrobatics and yoga poses. There was a guy doing a pommel horse type thing on one of the built-ins, it was truly a spectacle of the human carnival that is Santa Monica Beach.

But something unfortunate happened. A woman fell and hurt herself. Her hands and legs were moving so it probably wasn’t that bad, but it was enough to call the fire department and have an ambulance come.

Which brings me to the rant of this story.

What is with people who are too stupid to move out of the way when you hear sirens, see a giant red truck filled with firemen and an ambulance with its lights on?

Seriously, I observed this twice in the last week. Once was on Broadway, the big red truck and the ambulance was coming down the road, lights on and sirens blaring, and do you think the drivers on the road moved out of the way? No. Is it really that foreign a concept to move to the right when you see the lights?

Same thing on Sunday. Here comes the medical help and do people move out of the way? No. It’s not like there was a lot they had to do to move. They were on foot, take three steps backward or forward and you’re out of the way.

This is the sort of thing that just makes me want carry a bullhorn and control the world. If you needed the assistance of the fire department, the police or an ambulance, you would not want them delayed, especially out of sheer stupidity. It is simply rude not to move to the right when you see the lights.

Someone’s life may depend on those men and women in their dark blues and we should all be more conscious of the world around us and as we move into the crowded summertime traffic of visitors to our Paradise by the Pacific, we should have a campaign to remind people of this most basic tenet of civility.

Don’t be an obstructionist.

I realize that there are times when there is simply no place to move to, but usually that is because people are being obstructionist in their driving habits. I mean specifically those morons who continue to push out into the intersection, on a yellow light, when to the most obtuse observer it would be apparent that you were only going to increase the traffic jam.

Where are our legions of traffic officers when these people need to be reminded of, and ticketed for, blocking the intersection. It seems to me, that perhaps our local constabulary could engage in a bit of a public relations/public awareness campaign to alert drivers to the basics of proper etiquette. I suggest they do so with either the carrot of increased traffic flow and reduced delays, or the stick of a ticket that with fines and penalties will run the punished into the hundreds of dollars.

I know that won’t be popular, but someone has to do something about our heightened traffic this season, and to raise awareness about how important it is to keep traffic lanes open for emergency personnel.

The young woman who was hurt on Sunday I hope was only being checked for safety’s sake, but when it’s really important like someone’s bleeding to death or having a heart attack, seconds matter.

So move out of the way.

Go right when you see the lights.

It’s really that simple.

David Pisarra is a Los Angeles Divorce and Child Custody Lawyer specializing in Father’s and Men’s Rights with the Santa Monica firm of Pisarra & Grist. He welcomes your questions and comments. He can be reached at or 310/664-9969.You can follow him on Twitter @davidpisarra

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