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Volvo parking and societal decline

Filed in: culture, quotes, vent, Mon, Jan 19 2004 03:05 PT

I’ve always been interested in people, but I’ve never liked them.

W. Somerset Maugham

There I was, parked a few blocks from Seattle Center. On my walk back to the car, I see a piece of paper on my windshield. Its full text reads (in a woman’s writing):

It takes a real-life ass hole (sic) to park behind a person & block them in!! Hope your bumper turns out ok.

Have a great evening.

No contact information, naturally.

I then inspect the bumper of my 1984 Volvo 240DL (“Vo”). Sure enough, the plastic tabs holding the grille in are all broken, minor chrome damage, but nothing structural or worth replacing. I take some solace in knowing that the car that had backed intentionally into mine probably took more damage.

I don’t park too close to anyone. I can’t. I need more room to move around than anyone. To defend my position, I offer physics: if this car had no space to back up, it certainly wouldn’t have had enough kinetic energy to push my bumper in far enough to break my grille. Much more likely is the theory that the perp here doesn’t have a clue how to pull out of a space on a city street.

Which brings me to my biggest beef. What is it about America that everybody blames someone else for their actions, and flatly refuses to take responsibility for themselves? This woman not only knew that she had done damage to my car (and presumably that I don’t have comp and collision, because, well, it’s a 20-year-old Volvo), and instead of leaving contact information, instead of even a simple “I’m sorry, but you were parked too close”, I get insult and injury.

So, fine. A couple of zip ties later, Vo is once again ready to rock. A new grille will probably cost me $25 on eBay. If the other car is less than 10 years old, they’re looking at $500 if it’s a dime. Enjoy those repairs.

Instant karma’s gonna get you
Gonna look you right in the face
Better get yourself together, darling
Join the human race

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