Seattle Courant

Green Lake's Rules of the Path

Green Lake, Seattle, WA. May 2009.
By Acacia Jackson
May 3, 2009 05:05PM

Seattleites really stop all their plans for good weather. When it is good we make sure we enjoy it. My Facebook home page becomes bombarded with “... and the kids had fun at Green Lake!” or “... just HAD to get out to Green Lake.” and maybe even just “... Green Lake.”

I love it too, but I have a few suggestions that I think will make the nice days even better for those of us who venture to the lake.

Seattleites have issues with knowing how to dress when it’s not raining, and the crowd at Green Lake is no exception. I see people running in jeans, jean skirts, heels, flip flops, sweaters, studded collars and full make-up. Really?

If you aren’t dressed for a workout, just walk. And no, I don’t want to see you with your shirt off. It hits 42 degrees and off they come. It is too cold. You do not impress me, and if your pit bull needs to be on a boat chain with a choke collar Green Lake is probably not the place to be bringing him.

Now to the rules (written and common sense): The yellow line dividing the path is there for a reason. We all need to pass someone and on a busy day may need to cross the line. Yet, I see so many people walking in the wheels lane. A person comes on their bike and says “on your left” and nine times out of ten that walker hesitates then moves to his left in a panic. Know your left from your right. If someone says “on your right” they are going to be coming on your right and you should move to the left.

Bikes at the lake make it so dangerous. People ride so fast and there is always a dog or stray toddler ready to wander into the wheels lane.

The newest form of transportation at the lake is the skateboard. Correct me if I’m wrong, but skateboards are for sets of steps downtown, skate parks and graffiti marked areas. A grown man on his iPhone looks ridiculous on a skateboard anyway, and even more so when he is shuffling it around a lake.

Last, but not least, the stroller brigade. It is nice that you are getting your kids out and exercising. The issue is not you. It is the triple strollers shoulder to shoulder with your friends. This blocks the path and forces the rest of us to dabble dangerously in the wheels lane or in the dog poop covered tiny rocks if we want to pass you. Although it is fun to walk abreast, we all need to share the 4-foot wide lane. Be considerate.

Recap: dress appropriately, no dog breeds that have killing tendencies, stay on the correct side of the yellow line, slow down on your bike, leave the skateboard at home, break up your posse a little so people can get by you without risking their lives.

With a little common sense and consideration of others, all can better enjoy Green Lake.

See you there!