Pop some popcorn, open the blinds and set up shop. This parking lot is free entertainment!

Unless you are living under a rock, you know that the northeast got hit with some snow this weekend.  A LOT of snow.  FEET of snow in fact.  And while this amount of snow is known to lead to entertainment in NYC, it didn’t do too poorly outside Philly either.

I live in an apartment complex with a first-come first-park policy.  No saved spots, no designations, no garages (at least not for free).  This, as I’m sure you can imagine, leads to some interesting viewing during the snow.  My apartment setup conveniently allows for easy viewing of the chaos.  My couch faces my balcony which faces the parking lot.  Now, because I am a very interesting person, I can tell you that I spent hours and hours this weekend watching the action (and in all fairness, I keep the blinds open most days anyway–I like to keep an eye on Conan and watch what goes on in our parking lot.  I’m so super cool and not at all closing in on the years when I sit on my porch and yell at those darn kids to stay off of my lawn).

So the first thing that I noticed about the impending storm was that we suddenly had a lot more traffic in our lot.  A Land Rover that neither Boo or I have ever seen before set up camp on Thursday night.  And they managed to park in ONE of TWO branch-less spots.  The great thing about my apartment is that there are trees all around it.  I love seeing trees.  They don’t have a lot of those in NYC and what trees they DO have are basically sequestered into parks and parks alone.  The bad thing about these trees is that the branches hang over the parking spots.  Sap in the fall, bird poop from the occasional little birdy who stops by and perches up there, those elements are annoying, yes, but not lethal.  Snow, however, makes things a little more risky.  Snow weighs down branches which, under enough weight, snap and land right on poor little Conan’s head.  This hasn’t happened yet and it’s something I work to avoid so I do whatever I can to get the branch-less spots.  These stupid parking lot invaders make this task a little more difficult.

And then there’s the weird driving habits.  All this weekend people were driving around down below.  And not ONE OF THEM WAS DRIVING FORWARD!  Every single person went through this parking lot in reverse.  They backed into the parking lot and they backed out the parking lot.  What’s with all the reversing here, huh?  Is this a snow driving technique that they only teach in Eastern PA?  I’d love to delve further into the potential scientific benefits of only driving in reverse but…well…I don’t really think there are any.  Mainly due to the fact that Boo got backed into at a stop sign on Monday.  Most people don’t even STOP at stop signs and yet Boo gets slammed in the front!  Maybe we should focus on driving forward from now on, yes?

But the biggest reason to keep the blinds open, scouting out the parking lot, are the other inhabitants of said lot.  Ignoring the invaders, there are some regulars who pose a little threat to our cars.  First, there is White Mustang Guy.  I HATE White Mustang Guy.  For about 5 weeks, WMG parked next to me or Boo every single chance he got.  I wouldn’t care so much about this except that White Mustang Guy is a Manhattan export with attitude to boot and every time he parks he flings his door open all willy-nilly and it  flys right into MY car!  My passenger side (since I used to nab the corner spot to save at least one side of my car from just this type of thing) is just “ding ding ding ding ding” all down the side.

And as if White Mustang Guy isn’t enough of a hazard we have the little French kids to deal with.  The kids in this complex are a little weird as it is; they run around here alone, at weird times of the day, never an adult in site.  It’s all very strange.  But the little French kids are the strangest of the strange.  They play in the parking lot.  With the parking lot.  The cars are their hiding places, their “base”, their jungle gym.  So on Saturday afternoon when I saw a head pop up over the hill, I jumped up to get a closer look.  And sure enough, it was le petit garcon Francais, sliding down the hill annnnnd blam.  Landing on the hood of my car.  AWESOME.  After he landed he took of the liberty of brushing the snow off of my hood.  With his scratchy little kid gloves.  And then he moved onto Boo’s car.  Zut.  That was enough for me.  Boo has already had his mirror broken (and Boo is a car guy so he knows that it wasn’t broken by a car but by a person–either a bump at the train station or un petit set of hands) and I didn’t feel like adding any more damage.  So I got up and asked him if he wouldn’t mind not playing near our cars.  He obliged and scampered off.  Until Boo went out to shovel.  He had dug out his own car and was working on Conan when the little French kid popped back up over the hill.  And he skidded down towards our cars again, kicking back all of the snow that Boo had shoveled away.  ZUT!

And so that’s why the blinds will remain open tomorrow.

Oh, and are you wondering about the Land Rover?  Well, it sat, covered in snow, under NO branches until early Sunday morning.  And then it backed out without shoveling anything.  The owners didn’t clear off the car, shovel away any of the snow, nothing.  It left as mysteriously as it had arrived and it hasn’t been back since.  Although with snow on the way tonight, I’m sure we’ll be seeing it soon enough.

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6 thoughts on “Pop some popcorn, open the blinds and set up shop. This parking lot is free entertainment!

  1. it took me a few paragraphs to figure out that you named your car Conan
    maybe all the reverse driving is by the idiots who live in the NE and still buy a rear-wheel drive? that’s all i’ve got
    oh, and a big ol’ FU to drivers who don’t remove the snow from their cars… especially the roofs. nothing pisses me off more than a sheet of snowice landing on my car from the idiots in the minivan in front of me. i almost die every single time!

  2. It sounds like you’ve accomplished some interesting people watching anyway!

    It hasn’t snowed so bad over in Glasgow since the beginning of January (apart from random day last week when it disappeared within 24 hours) so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that continues. I HATE snow…

  3. This post simply reminds me that my car is being attacked by these Philly people. Poor thing needs a big hug.. :(

    And NSJ? Is it just me or are the cars that don’t clean the snow off of their roofs ONLY the minivans? Shouldn’t be driving mini vans anyway…

  4. It’s not so much an act seen from parking lots, but my personal favorite sight during such snow storms is these PEOPLE who placehold their dug out, yet unreserved, parking spots along the street with beach chairs, porch furniture, and large Fisher Price toys.

  5. seems like better viewing from your window than on television these days…and MITJ, that is such a PA city thing…the only places I have seen that is in Philly and Pittsburgh….must be related to Puxt. Phil :)

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