Thursday, October 08, 2009

Get Off My Cloud

We've all heard the stereotype about LA people and their cars: They get in their cars just to drive to the house next door. I always thought that was bullshit, but I've discovered that it's true.

The street parking area directly in front of my house is somehow the most popular parking space on an otherwise vacant block. For instance, my old next-door-neighbor's daughter would always park in front of my house to go to their house. Which made no sense to me, until I noticed that her path was a tiny bit easier because she could make a beeline to their door instead of having to walk through grass and around a tree. One time Lily told me she overheard this neighbor loudly complain "Dammit! Somebody parked in my spot" when there was a car parked in front of his house. Funny, it seemed like his spot was actually the area in front of my house.

And when one of the guys directly across the street got a new girlfriend, her favorite parking spot was in front of my house too. The space in front of their house was always open. But it was probably easier to walk directly from the car door than to walk around the front or the back of the car.

She'd often spend the night at his house, because her car was in the spot on my side of the street at all times. One time she must have gone on vacation with the dude, because her car was parked in the same place for about a week. One more day would make a full week and I was about to call the city to have it towed, but that day the car disappeared. Soon thereafter the guy moved out, I assume to move in with her. At least the spot in front of my house was open again.

And then recently the remaining guy across the street decided that it was too much trouble to park in his driveway, or park in front of his house, or even bother to park in a way that doesn't block my driveway, and he did this with his SUV:

Makes perfect sense. No having to pull into his driveway, it's a direct route to his front door, and no having to walk around the tree. I sent him a little friendly e-mail with this photo attached and the subject line "What's wrong with this picture?" It also asked him to be thoughtful and mindful of the fact that Lily needs to use the driveway to unload the kids, groceries, etc. He replied and apologized and said it wouldn't happen again. Now his new roommate has discovered the convenience of parking in the spot in front of my house. I think I'm just gonna start setting out orange cones in the spot when I leave for work. Or maybe just park on my lawn.

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