It should be simple. This is North America. We do not follow English custom on roads, sidewalks or stairs. We stay to the right when moving slower than those around us. Passing is on the left.
Well, most of the time anyway. There are those who simply can’t take their eyes off of their phone screen. Not to look around, not to avoid others, not to be polite, and most certainly not to let anyone pass since it might interfere with that all important kitty video.
Really? These are people who might never read a book, journal, or newspaper, but they put themselves and everyone around them at risk. You see the same thing all the time in crosswalks, on sidewalks, and occasionally even in bicycle riders. I have seen drivers looking at their phone rather than the road in front of them. Perhaps the only group that I have not seen paying more attention to reading their phones are motorcyclists. That might be just that the number of motorcyclists is minuscule compared to drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists (I almost wrote bivalves which might, in an absurd way, make a modicum of sense.
Back to situational awareness. I am not sure whether or not I am reacting to years of spending time in foreign locations that were not always safe, being concerned because of my age, or just irritated by the rudeness exhibited by those who don’t seem to care a whit about those around them. It wouldn’t hurt any of these individuals to tuck phones away, look at their surroundings, perhaps even see people as something other than objects interfering with their right to take up however much space might be needed in order to look at their phone screens.