Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The Problem-Prone Parking Lot Panty Dropper

For most city residents living in a first floor apartment the view out the window is oftentimes a wall, a dumpster, or a view into your neighbor's bathroom.  We lucked out with our apartment.  Our windows look out onto a church and its parking lot.  The church is old, so it makes for a pretty view, and the church also seconds as a dance studio, which makes for good people watching.

The down side to living next to a parking lot is that oftentimes the car sirens go off for no reason, or big huge tow trucks with loud engines and  blinking lights tote away illegal parkers in the middle of the night, or people leave their cars running with the exhaust pipes leaned up against our windows stinking up the place.  One exciting morning last weekend I was lying in bed staring out the window watching the snow fall when I heard  a huge smash, what sounded like a car accident.

I sat up in bed and was not disappointed: a sleek black Audi had plowed into the cement post lining the parking lot entrance.  The four-foot tall post was now blocking the sidewalk.  After the driver backed into a spot right outside our window, he got out of the car to assess the damage.  He was wearing a sweatshirt and looked cold, as it was technically freezing out and we were right in the middle of a blizzard.  He got back in his car and a few moments later the police show up.  The driver spoke to the officer, who inspected his car, and assessed the damage to the cement post, the more talking.   The cop writes some things down and leaves.  The driver gets back in his car to stay warm.

A few minutes later the driver emerges from the car with a small fluffy dog on a leash and walks it around the parking lot.  I feel very bad for the guy and his dog and I consider bringing him a cup of coffee or hot chocolate.  Just thinking about this potential act of compassion makes me feel like a good person.  How nice am I to think of helping others who are struggling with such a cold and frustrating day.  I am so kind.  I am a saint.  I call Trevor over to the window to have a look at the beat up car, the knocked over cement post, and the sad man and his poor shivering dog.  I tell Trevor about my idea to make them some hot chocolate to help brighten their day.

He has a look outside and then says "that guy's car has a bumper sticker that says 'panty dropper"

What the hell?  Are you serious?! What a pervert!

I then hate him tremendously for a) having such a pervy sticker, and for b) being such a bad driver, and for c) leaving his car running while our apartment fills up with carbon monoxide.  No way am I bringing a self-proclaimed 'panty dropper' hot chocolate.

An hour or so later a tow truck shows up and as the car is still running the technician goes to jump start it.  We are so confused as to what is going on.  After putting the cables away, the tow truck driver drags a still running car up on to its platform and ties it up.  We yell at the window to turn for the people to turn the car off, but to no avail, the tow truck drives off with the Audi tale pipes still smoking.  Now I hate the panty dropper for d) being a crappy environmentalist.  A+ job everyone.
Turn off the car!

Later the next day we get the blizzard of the century.  There is no one on the roads except snow plows.  We accumulated about 3 feet of snow with huge snow drifts burying cars.  We went for a walk later in the evening to find snow piles well above our waists and people skiing down the street.

Why would anyone drive in this weather?

We come back home and are sitting in our living room when we hear the vrooooom, vroooom, vrooooooooom of a car in the parking lot.  It goes on and on for a while this vroom, vroom, vroooooom-ing so I finally look out the window and see a car stuck in the parking lot.  It is well after midnight.  No one is around.  The guy is shoveling away around the tires, then trying again vroom, vroom, vrooooooooom non-stop with the wheels just spinning and spinning and spinning.

I make Trevor get on his boots and we go outside to help (this is convenient because I can 1). actively put an end to the noise that is driving me nuts and 2). feel like I am doing a good deed in the process).   We walk up to the car as the guy is fiercely shoveling.  We say "Hey can we help give you a push."  The guys says "That would be great, thanks!"   The three of us shove the car back to the road where it can get some traction and I nearly fall on my face in the process because the car was so easy to move I barely had to push.  A job well done.  He says "Thanks."  We say "No problem, have a good night" and head back inside.

On the way in Trevor  and I talk about how easy that was and we wonder whether that guy had even tried pushing the car as he really didn't seem to need our help.  He was a big, strong guy.  Then  Trevor asks if I realized who that was.  No, who?  It was indeed our favorite parking-lot-friend-in-distress, that infamous panty dropper....


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