Dude, Learn to Freakin' Park

Crowded Parking Lot

You’ve probably been in this situation…

You’ve just pulled into a parking lot, keeping your eyes open for other vehicles, pedestrians, and falling meteors. You’re parallel to the fire lane, and all of the sudden the vehicle in front of you stops.

Out of the passenger side comes a rather large woman, who walks to both sides of the back passenger doors and allows her children to come out.

You don’t dare pass because you risk running the young ones over and don’t want to risk oncoming traffic. Meanwhile, you have three or four vehicles behind you, all honking, and all trying to get to their own parking spot.

These Curbside Parkers are extremely dangerous and clueless. But are they the worst of the worst?

Reverse Parkers

Reverse Parker

The Reverse Parkers drama is real.

You’ve probably been behind one of these douche-bags. They advance beyond a worthy parking spot. Then the brake lights come on. Then the reverse lights.

Luckily you weren’t following too closely, right?

This guy proceeds to (attempt to) park his BAV (big ass vehicle) in reverse.

First try. Nope. Fail.

Second try. Closer. Still a fail.

Third try. Success. But he’s still a douche-bag.

Finally, you’re able to park like a normal, sane human being.

I imagine people park in reverse for the following reasons:

  • It’s super easy to leave. All you have to do is drive forward.
  • Leaving a parking spot in reverse is like so out of style.
  • It’s safer. After all, reversing out of a parking spot might strain your neck or something, right?

And here’s why one shouldn’t park in reverse:

  • It’s dangerous. Dangerous for the cars behind you waiting. Dangerous for the pedestrians. Dangerous for the other cars who risk getting hit with your uber-reverse skills.
  • It doesn’t really save you any time. Seriously.
  • You inconvenience the driver behind you. Unless you’re an expert, it’s going to take you a few tries to reverse in. It’s also unintuitive for the driver behind you. We’re really not expecting someone to go into reverse when in a parking lane.
  • You risk a baseball bat to your face by some crazy bi-polar blogger who has too much time on his hands. Okay, so I leave my baseball bat at home, but I do think about it!

I tend to reverse park in style. I find a parking spot with two open spots on either side. And I (wait for it) drive through and park. It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s somewhat dangerous… but it works. However, there’s one caveat: these spots are usually towards the back (ah, the torture of walking, no!!!).

Anywhere Parkers

Nice Parking Job

These guys feel that any stretch of pavement large enough to hold a vehicle is open season.

Those bright yellow striped patches near the store entrance? Game.

Those curbs marked as firelanes and prominent “No Parking” signs? Game.

The drop-off areas at airports? Definitely game.

Parking in Two Handicapped Spots

What about two open handicapped spots? Oh yeah, let’s just take up both of those.

Anywhere Parkers will park, well, just about anywhere. They’re the sluts of parkers.

These guys aren’t really dangerous. They just look like idiots. And the icing on the cake is on the (very) rare occasion that one of them gets towed or ticketed.

Curbside Parkers

Ah, we’re back to our Curbside Parker friends.

Besides laying on the horn for the departing occupants, I upon occasion resort to retaliation.

I truly believe in doing unto others. So I do. When the occupants have finished departing, I pass the vehicle (if it’s safe) and crawl forward.

I then brake and stop, returning the favor. I then crank up my music, open my sun roof, and sit back and relax.

Oh, is there a person behind me? Ooops.

15 Comments

  1. Genius observations and well documented rant, my friend. Overall, I’d have to say the obnoxious meter is pretty much pegged to the max. at just about any high-volume parking lot. Wal-Mart and the 21-flavor mega strip malls are, in particular, the worst breeding grounds for vehicular incompetence. However, I must give partial credit to the “master planners” who think low, leafy trees and full shrubs that obscure views at critical intersections are “pretty.” Further, why a parking lane, driving lane, and storefront door should occupy the same space further defy logic… you’ve got the reverse parkers, 50 shopping cart caravan, cell phone zombie pedestrians, curbside parkers, and frustrated imaginary baseball bat wielding folks like you and me all feeling entitled to the same asphalt at the same time. Kind of makes shopping on the Internet a little easier, huh?

    p.s. need a name for the people who decide to park 2 inches from your door so you have to get in on the passenger side and vault over the console… Porker Parkers?

  2. I’ll have to disagree with you, at least on the reverse parkers.

    Angled pull-in parking spaces were created for the mega-marts like Wally-World as a “convenience” to shoppers. In theory, you just pull in & back out. But the problem is you have to back out while trying to watch your blind spots for shopping carts and other cars. And how many times have you started backing out only to hit the brakes because someone else was also backing out at the same time????? Or even worse, you were in a fender bender with another car that was backing out?????

    The safest way to park a car in a parking lot is to back into a parking space. Why? Because you back into a empty spot with no chance of banging another car. Then when you leave, you have a clear view of everything in front of you and you just pull out into the lane and drive off. Also, backing in is easier than pulling in once you know how, unless you pull into a Wally-World parking lot with angled parking spaces!

  3. I can’t argue with your logic but I actually have a complaint about the opposite.

    More than once I’ve pulled up to back into a parking place, only to watch someone behind me whip into the space I was about to back into. And in every case, the driver jeered at me or snickered. In other words, he knew exatly what he was doing.

    The situation makes me want to do something rather nasty to his car but that would make me no better than he is, would it? So instead I usually write a note along the lines of “thanks for being an asshole” and I stick it under his wiper blade.

  4. Think of the note this way.

    The asshole pulls out, then sees the note and thinks “someone I know left me something”, stops his car, gets out, reads the note & gets pissed off.

    What I did to him is far more annoying than what he did to me and I win!!!

  5. Guilty as charge! I usually commit reverse parking but I am trying to do that whenever the traffic on the parking lot is not that heavy.

  6. Ronald,

    It’s just so amazing you got that aerial shot. I wonder if you have your own helicopter or plane. Hahaha.

    I really hate drivers who don’t know how to park. There were already a couple of instances where my dad’s car was hit during “reverse parking”. Both of them are females. Not all females are bad drivers but there are a lot of them who are. =)

  7. Funny post I as well always hated BAV’s taking up more then one spot or parking backwards as if they were putting their car on display. It’s just a correlation between ego and car.

  8. Probably before getting a drivers license, LTO must test how drivers park their cars.

  9. You hit the nail on the head. Most people who seem to have problems parking not only cause problems for everyone else, but they do not seem to ever get tickets. If it was me, I would not only get a ticket, but I would probably come out and find that my wheels are no where to be found.

    I must say that carrying baseball bat for this reason is a great idea, but you had better have a friend ready to bail you out.

  10. Seriously, what is with the anywhere parkers???? How do they even come to the conclusion that “well if my car can fit there” is a parking spot?

  11. Just found this link of a bad parker: http://twitpic.com/3hkxqo

  12. So many “anywhere parkers” here in the Philippines. Telling them to park your car properly is pointless, they’ll just stare at you or worst put a bullet in your head.

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