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Oops - Omnia mutantur, nihil interit.
October 6th, 2004
09:04 am
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Oops

This morning a bit after 9, I stumbled out of bed, having gotten about 5 hours of sleep for each of the past two nights. I'm collecting my stuff to go to work, and then I think “hey, that's an awfully loud noise out there …”

I look out the window and there's the street cleaner. Shit. I quickly put on my keys and grab my shoes. (Hah, I actually just typed that. I think I'm going to leave it that way.) I go out to the street and my car is still there, with that side of the street otherwise totally empty. I hop in my car, put up my hand (meaning “just a second”) to the street cleaner guy (but I don't think he sees me), and drive over to a side street. I park there and come back to the house to get the rest of my stuff. I wanted to thank them for not towing my car, which they almost certainly could have, but that didn't seem to be a possible transaction with him way up high and all the noise, and by the time I come out again they've moved on to the next block, so I just go to my car and drive away.

I guess I owe the City of Pittsburgh one. What kind of favors can one do for a city as an organic whole, anyway?

Actually, what I should do is set up a cron job to email me so I remember to move my car next time …

(5 comments | Leave a comment)

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From:monkey587
Date:October 6th, 2004 11:19 am (UTC)
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Donate some bags of rock salt?
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From:katieboyd
Date:October 6th, 2004 05:21 pm (UTC)
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They don't usually tow your car for street cleaning. They clean around it and give you a ticket. The ticket is annoying, but not usually a tow. I've gotten that ticket a few times. I get so many parking tickets.
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From:kenoubi
Date:October 6th, 2004 09:31 pm (UTC)
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Heh, I've never gotten one, except for the one time a few months ago when my car was towed for parking in front of a driveway. (The driveway was more of a pair of thin concrete areas on the person's yard, but on the other hand, the curb was marked yellow and I was talking on my cell phone when I parked.) I'm a little paranoid now... even when I know I'm parked someplace fine, every once in a while I think “I wonder if my car's still there” (well, okay, usually only if I haven't driven in a day or two). Thanks for the tip.

I doubt I can keep up that record, though. Seems like the occasional parking ticket is pretty much an unavoidable part of living in a large city.
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From:katieboyd
Date:October 6th, 2004 09:45 pm (UTC)
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Eh, I'm sure if you try hard enough, you can avoid it. Mine have all been avoidable.
Most of mine are for mettered spaces. I don't pay metters, ever, really. I think of myself as being on a payment plan. I get away without tickets for about as much as $15 worth of parking, usually, then I get a ticket for $15. At least, it averages out this way. So, I think of myself as just paying on a different sort of plan. It probably averages out more in there favor, but I'm willing to justify paying by check in the mail as an extra convenience. It's just that they don't admit to this as a valid option.
Others, the annoying ones, have usually been where I've been forced to drive when I normally wouldn't, had to park in Oakland, couldn't find a legal spot, and tried to get away with something less than legal. Like my $55 ticket from recently for being too close to a crosswalk when I needed to leave straight from work to visit my mom, and so had to have my car in Oakland. Or forgetting about street cleaning. ;)
I'm just bad about parking. I'm a poor example. You shouldn't draw conclusions from my experiences here. But I know all about parking tickets, when you get them, and how much most of them are. Don't ever park in front of a fire hidrant (I swear I didn't see it there!). Those are expensive ones.
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From:kenoubi
Date:October 10th, 2004 07:45 pm (UTC)
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Heh, I put a quarter in a meter practically every day. It didn't even occur to me that one could deliberately park in metered spaces while not paying them...

Parking tickets are weird. You're breaking the law, but only just barely, so they don't bother to actually do much about it unless you're a repeat offender and don't pay your tickets.

By the way, I've heard that the reason for parking meters in at least some places is to keep turnover high, not to raise money. I guess the rationale is that there are a limited number of good spaces, and that if people who come in early on (who probably work nearby) take them all, there won't be anywhere for the people who have short transactions to conduct in the area to park.
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