In what is apparently an ongoing series asking why people care about ridiculous things, it look like parking is next on the list.

Recently, we has a story about a brave parking warrior putting a silly "Learn how to park," note on a Sioux Falls' woman's car. This was in a snow covered parking lot. We all know that every year parking lots eventually end up covered in snow and the parking lines disappear. This always leads to a bit of a haphazard parking situation where people try their best to recreate the usual parking pattern. It's never perfect, but people in Sioux Falls are usually pretty good.

Hearing of this incident, makes me ask, "WHY DO YOU CARE?" I've known these people. They act as if a non 100% perfect placement of a vehicle in a parking space is a personal affront to them and an insult to their ancestors. So What!?!

Imagine being that angry about something that not only does not effect you personally, but doesn't matter in the least. The sun still rises, time doesn't stop and the Vikings lose in the playoffs; life continues as it always does.

Plus, these people are so focused on their parking lot crusade that they willfully ignore all the reasonable reasons that brought the evil parking offenders to this point. Maybe everyone was parked crooked, and the offender just parked where there was a space, and now the others are gone. This is probably the reason more often than not.

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But to be so fired up as to take the time to leave a note on someone's car is mind-boggling. Just think of the steps involved.

  1. See the offending parked car.
  2. Stop their car.
  3. Search around for a piece of paper (unless they're one of these goofballs with  preprinted joke cards. Where do those come from? I didn't know that comic books still had classified ads. Did you get a free pair of X-ray specs when you ordered a dozen boxes of the parking cards.
  4. Come up with some witty bon mot for the offender's car. This message must convey the anger of the writer and transmit to the reader the proper amount of shaming. Perhaps include a comparison questioning the parker's ability to perform some other task in relation to their parking ability? Even better, maybe a polite reminder to please be more careful when maneuvering their vehicle? Or maybe just the ol tried and true response: anonymously swearing at a stranger.
  5. Next, getting out of their vehicle.
  6. Looking around for witnesses.
  7. Walking over to the evil-doers car.
  8. Picking up the windshield wiper
  9. Placing the note.
  10. Replacing the wiper
  11. Returning to their car
  12. Parking themselves. Carefully of course, using GPS, sonar, and a protractor to be sure that their own parking job is executed with perfection. Each tire equidistant from each line. The body of the vehicle aligned with the straightness of a starched military uniform. The front of the car near, but not crossing the line; and the end of the car not hanging out even an inch.
  13. Going about their day.

Are these people proud of themselves? What do they think happens next? Do they believe that the parker finds the note, reades it, tears start falling, then they look to the sky and shout to the heavens, "Thank You! Thank You!, Thank You! I have seen the error of my ways, I am forever a changed person! If not for your tough-love I would have continued on this life path that inevitably leads to me living in a van down by the river!" (the note writer invariably thinks a 25 year old SNL joke is still funny).

Why do these people care, how does it effect them?  Until our city government can turn the whole town into a mixed-use parking ramp we all have to go out into the world and interact with others. Make your day better and go park somewhere else. Worry about yourself and mind your own business.

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