Holiday Parking, or How Not to Run Over Grandma

Posted on December 6th, 2010

Surprise, the holidays are nearly here. Oh, let’s be honest, we’ve been seeing trees and ornaments since July, so it’s not like the holidays are suddenly here and everyone is shocked and wondering where summer went. Anyway fortunately for you, I am here to warn you about a horror that is about to happen. No, it isn’t my cooking. Instead I am going to warn about something worse than the inevitable food poisoning awaiting my dinner guests.

Mall parking lots.

Here’s the deal. During the year, there are people I like to call shoppers. They frequent malls. The parking lots of those malls are intimately familiar to them. In fact I know of one such shopper—okay, me—who can get you in and out of any parking lot in a 50-mile radius in ten minutes, tops, even accounting for rush hour and holiday traffic.

On the other hand, there are people I like to call non-shoppers. These unfortunate souls only venture out into mall parking lots at holiday time. And that’s when the usual order of the parking lot disintegrates into chaos.

For you…and them…I have composed a handy guide to parking lots just in time for the holiday season.

Rule 1: The parking lot is not your friend. Oh, it looks friendly enough. I mean, it’s a big, open space and there are tons of stores nearby, decorated with tinsel and trees and 50% off signs. But the parking lot is a place of danger and despair, with drivers who get increasingly frustrated when they can’t find a spot right in front of the Levi’s outlet.

Rule 2: The other drivers in the parking lot are just as clueless as you. While this seems like a good thing—it does kind of level the playing the field–it’s really not.  In fact, what this really means is that the potential for accidents, arguments and the like is now tripled. Or possible quadrupled. Or more.

Rule 3: The other drivers are just as impatient as you. Yeah, I know. The sounds of holiday music coming from the cars and the Mickey Mouse antenna balls wearing Santa hats make you think that the people driving in circles in the parking lot are happy-go-lucky shoppers out for a drive. No. They aren’t. They are rabid, space-hungry fiends who do not care about anything more than getting any parking space they possible can and they are not afraid to cut you off when they find one, even if they are wearing an elf hat and sporting a light-up wreath tied to the hood of their car.

Rule 4: Do not flip off the pedestrians. At some point, those people will be in their vehicles. And you will be out of your vehicle. Enough said.

Rule 5: Do not ignore directional arrows. Seriously. The arrows are there for a reason. When you ignore them and drive down an aisle the wrong way you disturb the delicate, natural balance of the parking lot. Also, you tick off all the other drivers, especially the one who is backing out of his space, doesn’t see you because he’s looking for cars coming from the correct direction and smashes your car. Trust me when I say that this person is usually bigger than you, in a bad mood because he’s been shopping all day long and he will not hesitate to beat some holiday spirit into you.

Rule: 6: Do not ignore stop signs. People, stop means stop. It doesn’t mean, “Oh, look a pretty red sign…oh, gee, was that a speed bump?” Trust me. It wasn’t a speed bump. And nothing ruins the holidays more than running over a grandmother who just spent seven hours in line at Wal-mart so she could get her grandkids a $25 DVD player.

Rule 7: Do not follow solitary, female shoppers through the parking lot in the hopes of getting her parking space. Yes, we all do it. But honestly, this makes you look like a stalker and scares the heck out of the poor woman you are following. At the very least, from a polite distance, roll down your window and ask nicely if she is leaving and if you can have her spot. Warning: if you are too close, you might find a big, old can of pepper spray squirted in your face.

Rule 8: If you can’t stand the parking lot, go directly to valet parking. Really. It will be the best ten bucks you ever spend.

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5 Responses to “Holiday Parking, or How Not to Run Over Grandma”

  1. RU Serious (Bob) Says:

    Hi “MOM!! lol! I really hate to tell you this but at the moment I’m in Puerto Vallerta, Mexico with the wife and a few friends.. It’s lovely here!! Sorry……… :(

    But, I will be back on Friday, Dec 10th, and I hope to play catch-up on your posts. This one killed me!

    Take care,
    Bob

  2. Pregnancy Symptoms week by week Says:

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  4. artsy ant Says:

    This made me smile all the way through reading it.
    By the way: Rule #5 does NOT apply to me… the directional arrows you’re referring to are in reality arrows pointing to where I’m coming from. ;) Yup, I have to sincerely apologize but I’m one of these scatterbrained people that once in a while get the directions wrong…

  5. Honda CBR19 Fairing Says:

    Can I link to this article on my own motorcycle blog?

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