Sometimes A Benefit Of Doubt Has Its Benefits

Whether they’re in a rush or just are straight-up inconsiderate I still am forced to deal with the occasional motorist who frustratingly parks blocking our driveway. But this weekend I fought off one for every day. There was a neighbor’s car poorly parked Thursday and all the way to Friday morning. Then there was a black sedan Saturday, followed by a Silver one Sunday.

In fact now that I think about it, when Susan and I left Saturday morning for our apple-pickin’ daytrip, we caught another parker in the act, whose vehicle’s back end extended a good three-feet across the apron.

“Can you get out?” he asked as I stood there staring at his car’s ass in a classical WTF pose.

“That would be no,” I answered curtly and he started the car and booked it. Debate occurred between Susan and I as to whether he would have gotten out and checked like a dutiful and considerate human, or whether he would have just rationalized why it was OK to be a dick. I fell squarely into that second camp.

There was a time a couple years ago where this BS was such a regular enough occurrence that I had LADOT parking enforcement on speed dial. I still do, but whereas I used to call them up requesting a citation expecting to be on a first-name basis with the dispatcher, of late I’ve taken a different tack. Maybe it’s the economy. Maybe I’m getting soft in my old age. But instead of meeting rude with cold I go to the trouble of printing out the following form note and slipping it under the offending vehicle’s wiper blade:

You have been partially blocking the driveway behind your vehicle. To you it may not seem like much, but this is a tight two-car, split-level garage, and any encroachment across the apron — such as how you’ve chosen to leave your vehicle — not only makes it difficult to get in and out, but unnecessarily puts your vehicle at risk of being hit accidentally during exits.

Personally, I’ve always been aware of how I park at curbs and wouldn’t dare park as you did, whether it was for a few minutes or a few hours.  As such, I’ve never bothered leaving notes such as this. Instead, I’ve just contacted parking enforcement to have vehicles such as yours ticketed and/or towed. They are more than happy to oblige.

But lately I’ve been working a different angle: I’m attempting to be considerate towards people who aren’t in the hope that the next time — whether it’s this driveway or another one — you’ll be a bit more attentive and less thoughtless.

Whether I’m wasting my time or not is up to you.

To be honest, of the three careless culprits I mentioned, I did call parking enforcement on the black sedan, whose prevention of us entering the garage properly unimpeded was what we were greeted with upon our return from our daytrip Saturday afternoon. Maybe the driver got out of there before the officer arrived. Maybe not.

But the silver sedan on Sunday morning, pictured at right, got my usual benefit-of-the-doubt treatment. The surprise came later when I found a reply lodged in the garage door handle (after the jump):

In case the image doesn’t show up, the note reads:

Thank you for
being so kind
and not call [sic]
the law enforcement
I promise that this
would never happen

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Will Campbell arrived in town via the maternity ward at Good Sam Hospital way back in OneNineSixFour and has never stopped calling Los Angeles home. Presently he lives in Silver Lake with his wife Susan, their cat Rocky, dogs Terra and Hazel, and a red-eared slider turtle named Mater. Blogging since 2001, Will's web endeavors extend back to 1995 with, a comprehensive theater site that was well received but ever-short on capital (or a business model). The pinnacle of his online success (which speaks volumes) arrived in 1997, when much to his surprise, a hobby site he'd built called VisuaL.A. was named "best website" in Los Angeles magazine's annual "Best of L.A." issue. He enjoys experiencing (and writing about) pretty much anything creative, explorational and/or adventurous, loves his ebike, is a better tennis player than he is horr golfer, and a lover of all creatures great and small -- emphasis on "all."