They didn't realize their window was down!
Joe and I had parked in the disabled parking spot at a big grocery store. We were about to check into the hotel and wanted to pick up some pop, some beer, and some other sundry things for the room. We were lucky because there were four blue badge spots, clustered together, two on each side, at the end of a row right near the front door of the store. All were taken except for the one directly in front of us, we could drive in. We parked.
Joe pulled the chair out of the back seat, I affixed the footrests, and while Joe was arranging things in the back seat I called to him, "You want me to come round behind the car or go ahead between these two cars here." He looked and saw that there was plenty of space between the cars in front of us and going between them was an easier and shorter trip to the store, "Go on ahead," he called.
I rolled up between the two cars and then noticed that it was a fair rise on the turn towards the store, I would need Joe's help to hold me so I didn't roll back. I decided to stop and wait. I didn't realize that there were people in the car beside me on my right. I just thought it was parked and the people would have been in shopping. Movement caught my eye though, so I glanced over.
There were two people in the car, both much younger than I, they were sitting motionless, staring straight ahead. "Don't look, don't look, don't look," whispered one, "Maybe he won't see us."
I was confused about who they were talking about. I noticed then someone coming out of the store, running towards that car. I then noticed that there was no blue badge anywhere to be seen.
The other fellow got in, the driver said, "Don't look over, he might not see us."
I thought this all outrageously funny and must have sat there grinning. I said, "I can hear you."
"Shit, the window's down!"
Without looking over, the window slowly rolled up, then the car started and drove away.
You can't make this shit up.
It's a good thing humans are so amusing, or I would have given up on them a long time ago... ;-)
Gave me such a chuckle. Self imposed guilt - the best type in this situation. I can laugh - only because it has happened to me. Struggling to get in a place blogged by non-permit folks. They could not look me in the eyes upon approach. You gotta laugh - or cry - but laughing is better.
For me, the best ones are the people who think that wearing their headphones excuses them from getting up out of the priority seating on the bus, and you can tell they're aware of the situation because they get all guilty looking.
So they know that they are doing wrong but if they don't get caught it's okay. That would be pretty juvenile.
Makes me think of a comment Aunt Agatha makes in a Jeeves and Wooster book (by PG Wodehouses)
"Bertie," she said - in part and chattily - "it is young men like you who make the person with the future of the race at heart despair." I would make a similar comment about the occupants of the car you were sat beside, Dave.
Couldn't disagree more with Colleen! I think people are works in progress and that as far as these ones go, their obvious discomfiture is an excellent sign that they will improve with time.
Just a hilarious story, Dave. Love it!
The story is hilarious. :-)
But in defense of these particular illegal parkers: they did what I regularly do when parking is tight and I can wait in the car. I pull into a no parking zone (loading zone, fire hydrant, bus stop, any sort of reserved parking) and sit there ready to move as soon as necessary. If someone pulls up who needs the spot, I nod an acknowledgment and pull out of their way.
It never occurred to me to be embarrassed about this or view it as much of a problem for anyone.
Someone who needs the space might see from a distance that there isn't one available and so might skip that particular task (and likely have to come back later) because you're parked in an accessible spot.
Also, maybe someone who needs the spot would feel uncomfortable bothering you. After all, there's no way to tell by sight whether you're perfectly amiable to moving or if you're antagonistic to those people with handicap plates/placard who think they're entitled to better parking. No way to tell. Maybe the space isn't worth risking abuse.
So, yeah, it's a problem.
To Anon #2 at 22:29 pm:
Some people who use blue badges use them because they have health conditions that severely limit how much energy they have each day to go about and do things. In some cases they may only have one or two "good days" each week (or, each month) in which they have enough energy and strength to get out of bed, get dressed, and leave the house at all.
On the few, rare "good days" they have at all, no they can't afford to just sit in the parking lot waiting for someone to move out of the way. Particularly since they have no way to tell you apart from some of the other people who also have appropriated the blue badge spaces who may react with hostility (yes, really) when someone challenges them on their right to park there. If they have to deal with a lot of hostility, then this can very rapidly consume what little energy they have to the point of wearing them out so much they still can't go shopping any more any way. This is part of the risk assessment that many people with disabilities have to make every day when confronted with a situation where they need to specifically ask someone to move out of their way.
So when someone who needs a blue badge space comes and sees you occupying a spot, and all the other spots filled, then yes they may give up and go home, frustrated at having wasted their rare "good day" on a fruitless trip to the store. And you may never know this has happened.
So. Please stop taking the blue badge spaces. Because no matter how willing you are to move out of the way, you're still causing a problem for others.
I'm fortunate not to be a person who needs blue badge spaces myself. But I've read enough comments from people who do to know that situations like this are common. And I do have other types of disabilities, so I do have some familiarity with the need of doing a risk assessment each time I decide whether it is worth my energy (albeit, more abundant than the energy available to people with certain types of health conditions) asserting my need for accommodations.
"Particularly since they have no way to tell you apart from some of the other people who also have appropriated the blue badge spaces who may react with hostility (yes, really) when someone challenges them on their right to park there."
Reminds me of a story my Dad told me.
At my Dad's former workplace, a veterinary teaching hospital, they had a bunch of construction for awhile. The construction workers got used to taking the disabled parking. So used to it, in fact, that one day, a construction worker came into the waiting area to demand loudly 'who the [swear word] is parked in the disabled parking?' Only then did he notice the frightened-looking old lady in a wheelchair with an oxygen tank attached...
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