Parking Close

Unlike many cities in the country gripped with a recession and suffering from a decrease in retail sales, San Diego continues to thrive. Just venture out to a shopping mall, restaurant, or the local Costco Wholesale, and you’d think they were giving stuff away. 

Given the fact that most retailers and restaurants offer plenty of parking—except for the Christmas season when you can’t even buy a parking spot—why is it that most people (and I’m not referring to handicapped folks), are obsessed with parking as close to the structure as possible? 

I can understand wanting to shorten your walk when it’s minus 20 degrees in Saint Paul, or 110 in Fresno, or you’re stuck in the middle of a torrential rainstorm in Houston, but on a beautiful, seventy-degree-day in Southern California, what motivates people to fight for close parking spots?

Haven’t they heard that walking is actually healthy?  It’s not as if they had to schlep their purchases to the car. Most retailers do provide shopping carts. 

I really don’t give a damn where anybody parks, or how hell-bent they are with parking close. For all I care, they can fight over that first parking spot for the next millennium and it wouldn’t bother me. However, when some clown in his BMW X5 sits in the middle of the aisle, blocking traffic, talking on his cell phone, signal flashing as a warning to anyone that he has dibs on the soon-to-be-vacated parking spot, and I’m log jammed behind him, then yes, I have a problem. 

It all comes down to common courtesy—a lost art. There is no easy solution to this problem short of a fist fight, but I do have what I feel is an effective way to handle it. Mount a rocket launcher on your hood (you can actually buy one on the Internet), and have a trigger installed on your steering wheel. The next time you get stuck behind some dimwit gumming up the works with his big-ass SUV, blow your horn and give the knucklehead 30 seconds to find a different parking spot. If he doesn’t comply, aim carefully. You wouldn’t want to hurt an innocent bystander.


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