Photo cred - TheStar
The world can be a dangerous place full of perils and pitfalls, and Montreal is no different. Every city in the world has its own set of dangers, luckily we live in a city where we don't need to fear shark attacks, tornadoes, poisonous snakes or voodoo curses (it's a serious problem in New Orleans). Unfortunately Montreal has it's own unique set of hazards you should be watching out for if you want to stay in one piece.
Once you read this list you'll be prepared to survive another year in Montreal:
Potholes just seem like an ugly inconvenience until you see a gigantic one ahead of you while you're driving 60 kilometers an hour. That's okay though, you see it and you have plenty of time to swerve. Only problem is you just swerved right into an even deeper pothole. It's not just about the damage to your car. Hitting a pothole hard enough can cause neck and back injuries, and pray that your tire doesn't pop or fly off your car because that won't be fun for you or for anyone around you.
2. STM Bus Mirrors
You know exactly what I'm talking about, those gigantic mirrors that stick out so far on the sides of buses. I can remember standing in the front of a bus on my way home from school when I was younger and seeing that mirrors come within inches of people's heads. Could you imagine how much damage those things would cause if they hit you in the head while you're obliviously waiting for the bus.
3. Falling Concrete
Whether it's aesthetic chunks of concrete falling off of downtown buildings or entire overpasses collapsing onto the highway below, getting hit by falling concrete is a very real danger in Montreal. You can tell because people are afraid of this if you've ever been stuck in traffic near an overpass. There are always a few drivers who break before the overpass, wait for the cars to clear away, then they drive right through it to spend the least amount of time underneath it. I'm not a religious person and I still say a small prayer when I'm stuck under and overpass for too long.
4. Getting Stuck In A Protest
Last year I had to plan my escape from downtown at least 5 times knowing protests were about to break out nearby. You better move your car now, or you won't be able to leave the downtown core until midnight. And if that's not enough, I have this fear that I'm be walking downtown minding my own business and all of a sudden I'll turn the corner and I find myself in the middle of protest. The cops fence us off and arrest all of us and no one believes me when I say I was just walking by.
5. Getting Run Over By A Snow Plow
This one scares me so much it's not even funny. I'm especially fearful of those bigger articulated tractors. I try my best to make eye contact with the driver before getting close to one but the drivers never look back. I feel like I'm playing a boss level in Super Mario and I have to wait for the fireballs to pass before I jump over the lake of fire.
6. Getting Hit By Biker
It might not hurt as much as a snowplow but what they lack in pain they up for in unpredictability. Seriously, do you have to take a course on how to be ninja before you ride a bike in Montreal? It's like they're purposely trying to be as silent and invisible as possible. Look both sides of the street all you want, you wont see them coming until it's too late.
7. Hitting A Biker
While I fear getting hit by a bike I also fear hitting a bike. Especially in Montreal where there are bike baths in between the parked cars and the road. No matter how many times I check my rear view mirrors, I'm convinced that I'll clothesline one of them when I open my car door.
8. Playoff Riots
If you've ever seen a hockey riot in Montreal you know it's not joke. There's nothing more destructive than a bunch of drunken, angry hockey fans and for some reason they seem to love breaking car windows. And if you thought getting stuck in a student protest was bad, you don't want to get stuck in a hockey mob unless you're prepared to join them or if you're looking for an excuse to loot an SAQ.
9. Getting Pushed Onto The Metro Tracks
Have you ever been in the metro during rush hour? Everyone is sitting around and waiting until you start hearing that faint noise stirring up from deep within the tunnel. That breeze starts blowing and everyone's heads pop up like bunch meerkats. Everyone starts heading towards that orange line and that's when you see people being true assholes. The train's not even here yet and people are already pushing. I'm convinced that one day people will push so hard that everyone standing too close to that orange line will get pushed right onto the tracks. Think of the delays that would cause.
10. Getting Pranked By Just For Laughs Gags.
Considering how long they've been around I'm surprised I haven't been caught by a Just For Laughs Gag before. It's not so much a physical hazard as it is a fear of looking stupid on TV. I'm also afraid of how I'd react if i got pulled over by a fake police officer giving out joke tickets. That ticket may be a joke but I'm still late for work you bastard.
11. Driving Up Peel, Drummond or Montagne In The Winter
I'm sure there are other dangerously steep street but these 3 streets came to mind because I've had similar incidents happen to me on all 3. You start driving up and your car start having a bit of trouble making it up the hill. That's okay though because i got my winter tires on ... I'm good. But that idiot ahead of me doesn't and lo and behold he's slowly sliding back downhill like a 3500 pound unstoppable metal bowling ball. Can't go anywhere because there's also a car behind you, so you pretty much just have to sit there and accept your fate.
12. Getting Attacked By Raccons And Squirrels At The Lookout.
You've seen that cute raccoon family at the lookout, they're cute as long as they've been fed. But every once in awhile they get awfully close and call me crazy but I don't trust a rabid hungry animal who wears a mask. And squirrels, you may think I'm being crazy but that's because you've never had a pissed off squirrel jump onto you and start climbing up your shirt and onto your neck. That shit is not only terrifying but those little claws hurt like hell.
13. Getting Killed By A Crazy Cab Driver
Should I drive home? No way, I've had way too much to drink, I should call a cab and be safe. So you get in the cab and the driver seems nice until the light turns green and you find yourself being driven by a wannabe stunt driver from The Fast And The Furious. Why is he driving so fast? Does he not realize that the faster he gets me where I'm going the more my fare will cost? Also If I'm dead I can't pay you ... just sayin'