Parking ettiquette rules

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Parking ettiquette rules

I am pretty anal about where I park either of my two sports cars. No, I'm not the type to park diagonally and take up two parking spots - those "people" deserve any vigilante justice they receive such as getting their car keyed. Ok, maybe they don't deserve such a severe punishment, but they certainly annoy the heck out of me. If you want to read about "scoring" various parking spots to determine the optimal parking spot, check out this link - a fun read.

In any event, I went to a diner the other day with my wife and I spied two parking spots in the corner of the parking lot. Decisions... decisions... The two spots were side by side, however one of the spots was in the uppermost corner (end spot), therefore only one car could park next to it. It's common knowledge that it's better to park on an "end spot" where another car can only park on one side of your car thus reducing your chances of a car door hitting your car by 50%. Actually, since many times cars have just a driver and no passenger, if you park on an end spot where a car can only park to your left (their passenger door by your driver-side door) you probably reduce the chances even further.

The obvious parking choice would be the end spot, however, I neglected to mention that on the opposite side of the corner was a row of cars aligned 90 degrees perpendicular to the row where I was about to park and one of those cars, a small Neon was parked on the end very close in proximity to the open end spot I was spying. I thought to myself, "Hmm, if I take the end spot, I will be parked right behind that red Neon. He's going to have to cut his steering wheel sharply when he backs up to avoid hitting my back bumper. Perhaps even have to do a K-turn."

My second thought was, "It's a small Neon, he can fit. Besides, the diner painted the yellow lines, so it's a valid spot." Famous last words... (The diner actually painted a curved yellow line showing how cars parked in the Neon's spot should pull in and back up.)

I parked as close as I could to the curb in front of me to give the Neon maximum back up room. I even remember being a bit nervous about scraping the front of my car against the curb which sits pretty low to the ground.

My wife and I get out and I look back at the Neon, judging the room it has to back up. I still didn't feel comfortable about parking there and made a comment to my wife asking if she thought I should move my car.

I decided that only an idiot would walk right past a bright red sports car and see how close it is to their car (the Neon) and not be extra cautious while backing up.

Alas, my faith in people's driving capabilities was hopelessly, stupendously, ridiculously.... wrong!

I didn't notice right away, but a few hours later I noticed a huge paint chip missing from the passenger-side rear bumper all the way down to the blue primer, as well as some other scapes. At first, I was very self composed as I inspected the damage. But then thoughts started racing through my mind, such as "Why didn't they come into the diner and ask for the owner of a red sports car?" and "Chicken liver bastard, hit and run on me! I hope karma or the Almighty gives them their just desserts!"

It made me feel better to think that everyone gets their just "due" just because there was nothing I could do about it. There was no one I could blame and no one I collect repair costs from. I can't even report this to my insurance since the damage is so minor the deductible itself is probably more than the repair costs.

The ironic thing is that this bumper was just replaced last year while I was leaving Yankee Stadium. And this same bumper was also dented by another hit-and-run incident in Norwalk several years ago while I was in the car (but that's another story). I tell ya, this bumper seems to be a magnet!

If you're worried it was my Dodge Viper, no worries, it was not - it was my Mitsubishi 3000GT. So I guess I can take solice in that, especially since I was seriously considering driving the Viper that day. Guess the Almighty was looking out for me after all. ;)

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