As a photographer you see things, you notice things, because you observe what’s happening around you. I know not everyone has a photographer’s eye, but I do believe that every has some sort of “observe-ability”. The other day, when I went climbing with a friend of mine, we saw a good example of “being oblivious of your surroundings”. A young man came out of the sports center, passed a car, walked around his own car, stepped in, started his engine and reversed straight into the car he just passed. Despite me and my friend yelling warnings.
The guy drove back into his parking space, got out, walked to the owner of the car he just hit, and said “boy, you’ve got a small model car. I didn’t even see you!”
I know, I know… Traffic accidents like this happen all the time. In one way or another I can grasp for example that you miss a car coming from the right. It’s moving, it might be somehow slipping your attention or your angle of view. But on a well lit parking lot, where you just passed the car. That’s just weird.
It happened to me once too.
I was waiting in line at the traffic lights, four cars in front of me, three cars behind me. To my left there’s a parking lot, full save for one spot. I see a guy coming out of the store, looking at the line waiting for the light to turn green. He walks to his car, gets in, and reverses. Straight into my door. And with considerable speed. I had nowhere to go, and frankly, I was too flabbergasted to have done anything. I just looked at the reverse lights of his car turning on and the car coming at me.
I had to climb out from the passenger’s side, because my door was so busted it wouldn’t open anymore. When I got out and looked over my car to the guy, who’d driven back into his parking space, he walks up to me and says “Where the HELL did you come from so fast?” I look to my right at the four cars waiting in front of me and then to the left to the three cars parked behind me, spread my arms in a “look to both sides” gesture and go “Sir, where do you THINK I was coming from?” (I could’ve added there “I just landed with my space cruiser after a 15-light-year trip to the end of the Galaxy, and thanks for the fish”, but the guy didn’t look like he would’ve understood that, anyway).
Both very similar cases. Very similar behavior.
Some sort of indirect denial of their own mistake. Which makes it all the more interesting, from a human behavioral point of view, that is.
It definitely makes me wonder what can consume people so much that they really are sometimes completely oblivious to what’s happening around them.
Food for thought…