Last week I was turning left onto a cross-street in my car. I was already half-way across the oncoming traffic lane when I noticed that the street I was turning onto was blocked off with pylons placed by city workers. I could see that far down the other end of that block the city workers were cutting down trees, blocking me from being able to go out that end of the street. Luckily, I only needed to pull into a parking lot just to my right and *Before* where the city workers were killing nature. I quickly got out of my car and moved a couple of pylons out of the way.
One of the city workers shouted out, “Hey! You can’t move those!”
I responded, “Yes I can!”
Another of them shouted, “What the hell are you doing?”
I responded, “Whatever I want!”
I hopped back into my car and pulled through the parking lot off on my merry way.
The whole escapade got me thinking about signs. When I used to live in Toronto from time to time I’d notice these pylons placed down numerous city blocks where regular folks like you and me are supposed to be able to park. The pylons had one word on them: FILM. Inevitably the next day the pylons would be replaced with semi-trucks, trailers, and other movie-filming related gear. At first I thought that the film studios must have some sort of deal with the city, but upon further investigation (I’m not giving up my sources!) I discovered that there is no law that says I can’t kick their FILM pylons onto the street and park my car there.
I don’t have a garage, and every winter I spend a lot of time shoveling out a parking spot directly in-front of my house. Inevitably I will return home and find that one of my neighbors has parked in my spot. The winters here are heavy, so finding another parking spot can mean driving up to three blocks away and walking back to my house. I’ve been pondering a number of ideas to rectify the situation:
1. Pylons: Put a pylon in my parking spot with one word on it: MARK
2. Fire Hydrant: I want to get a fake fire hydrant and place it on my lawn right beside of my parking spot.
3. Parking Tickets: I want to make legitimate looking parking tickets and place them on cars that park in my spot. I’ll charge them $20 if they pay right away, and $75 if they don’t pay within the first 7 days.
How often do we follow the rules laid out by signs? How often are those rules not really rules at all and we’re just suckers?