Lose a parking Space, Smack around a Woman

A correspondent commented on my blog below about hitting women. I think he may have missed my point – First his comment:

I have to disagree… I can see road rage escalate in any variety of situations between a diverse array of demographics. It seems there’s a couple of these parking-rage stories every year & they’re not always a big man vs. a little woman… what surprises me is how surprised we all seem to be by it.

I’ve seen some pretty entertaining fisticuffs thrown about as a result of parking (my favorite being a male businessman & female businesswoman — both well-dressed — engaging with another well-dressed businessman over a spot, despite the lot being empty only about 5 spots further away).

I always back into parking, and I can recall two occasions in my 11 years of driving of someone cutting in behind me… I certainly felt slighted by it and while I didn’t deal any bodily harm, it’s possible there may have been some alterations to the person’s vehicle upon their return. …And I, like most people, would consider myself a mild-mannered, rational, and logical person.

So let’s see — you will do potentially hundreds of dollars of damage to a person’s car because they took a parking spot you thought was yours. Frankly, I have taken spots in that way and not realized it. You were sitting in the lane preparing to back into the space and I saw the space, saw you, and thought you were adjusting your seat belt and pulling away — since 99.9% of the people don’t back in and most garages don’t allow it, I take the space. Or I was daydreaming and didn’t see you at all. Happens all the time, its innocent, but you decide to key my car rather than simply saying “hey, I was backing into that spot.” Most people would say “Whoops” and pull out. Some might just walk away and you would then have some bit of information about their lack of character.
By the way — you missed the entire point of my post. I don’t have a problem getting angry about people who park weird, steal my spot, or cut me off on the freeway… stuff happens and you get mad about it. Maybe you slammed your finger in the car door and need to blow off some steam. So be it. My issue is with men who beat up women. I spoke to a male friend about it (my age) and he stopped me before I had finished my story. “It’s about civility and training. Men should, by definition, treat women well. Period. We are being taught by women’s groups that this is sexist (Andy mentioned that to me) but so be it. If declining to knock some woman’s block off because she is acting like a jerk is sexist, then I certainly am. And I’ll live with that.

Bobra also commented:

I see a potential for road rage when you find an open spot using one of the new parking spot notification systems, but someone that was cruising for a spot in that vicinity pops into it just ahead of you. There’s no good way to reserve that spot once you find it.

Yep – can’t agree more – Just because I spot a space on my iPod doesn’t mean it’s mine.


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