Parking spaces are a huge luxury in today’s downtown Toronto.
Even people that don’t own a car will still seek out a condominium that includes ownership of an underground parking space!
I had an experience last night in my garage that was not unforeseen, but unexpected nonetheless.
Here’s how I dealt with the situation, and please…..don’t judge me…
At the new King East Lofts that was launched last week, we learned that parking spaces were an extra $30,000 on top of your base condominium price.
I think back to the $19,000 I had to pay when I bought at the West Side Lofts two years ago, and it almost sounds like a steal! Almost…
A good building, however, will contain anywhere from 12 to 20 visitor parking spaces. There’s something to be said for ensuring your friends don’t have to park on the street, or that your house-guests can leave their cars underground overnight.
You need a “garage door opener” to get through the pearly gates, also known as a transponder, clicker, authenticator, gizmo, thing-a-ma-jigge, and jimmy-jammy…
But many people have figured out that if you time the entrance perfectly, you can actually get two cars through the door before the gate closes.
And THIS is where I encountered a serious problem…
I came home last night after a long, tedious day. There’s nothing like the Monday after a long weekend to leave you absolutely drained!
I circled around the corner of P2 at about 30 KM/H as I always do, and approached P3.
Had I been more attentive, I might have actually seen the black Mazda-3 in my space from a distance. But in my weary state I actually pulled up, turned 90-degrees, and began to back into my space……before I saw the car sitting in P3-10.
“What the #@$!” I exclaimed!
I paused for a moment, then got out of the car to ensure this was in fact P3, but I was indeed on the right planet and there was indeed a car parked in MY space!
I weighed my options carefully, and then made a decision that I stand by, 110%.
I turned my car perpendicular to the black Mazda, and left about two inches of space between us. I had completely blocked the car in, while leaving enough space for the cars in P3-8 and P3-11 room to get out.
I then left a note on the windshield of the Mazda that read: “Please call me if you would like me to move my car,” and wrote my cell phone number below. I then proceeded up to my condo to make dinner.
About an hour later, my cell phone rang, and the smile on my face began to widen.
I answered, and a guy on the other end yelled “HEY! Are you parked behind me?”
I responded rather wryly, “I’m not sure. Where are you parked?”
He said, “Ummmm…..I’m in P3-10.”
“Haa! Funny,” I replied. “Because that’s MY PARKING SPOT!!!”
Almost as if he didn’t hear and didn’t care, he said, “Well can you come down here and move your car? We need to get out!”
So I told him matter-of-factly, “Well actually, I’m in the can right now, so if you could just give me like 20-25 minutes, that would be great!” (“in the can” is a synonym for what I really said….)
Slightly less than a half hour later, I went down to the parking garage.
“Well, thanks for gracing us with your presence,” the man said to me almost unaware that he was parked in my spot, and he was in the wrong, not I.
“Geez, I’m really sorry,” I said. “When I got into my condo tonight, there was a stranger sitting on my couch, so I had to get him to leave before I came down to get you out of my parking space.”
He stood there with blank look on his face.
“Can I ask an obvious question?” I inquired. “Why the hell are you parked in my space?”
And this is the part that really gets me.
He told me, “Well my girlfriend is here from out of town! We haven’t seen eachother in three weeks!”
It was almost as if the end justified the means here….in his mind.
“Yeah, well I haven’t seen my girlfriend in six months,” I replied. “We broke up six months ago.”
There was the blank look on his face again. Believe me, I was going to make this worth my while! I was gonna have some fun with this guy.
“Can I ask why you didn’t park in the visitor parking?” I asked them.
That’s when she piped up, “We wanted to park together,” and she said “together” in a cute little tone that somehow signified parking tandem is special, and that they are somehow closer in mind, body, and soul when their cars are closer in proximity.
Ugh. Her sheer girly-ness made me never want to be in another relationship again. Am I alone on this one, or was that just a stupid comment to make?
Looking at an 0-2 count, he was ready to swing through strike three with his next excuse:
“Well I didn’t know you were gonna be home!”
Huh? Really? Are we friends? Do you know me? Do you know my schedule? Does any of this matter?
I didn’t even dignify this comment with a response, I just got in my car, and prepared to move out of his way. Well I should say “her way” since she was the proud owner of the Mazda-3.
I sat in my driver’s seat, checking my teeth in the mirror, fiddling with the bass and treble levels while flipping to the loudest hip-hop song I could find, and then I exited the car and rooted through my trunk for a bit. This was all while they sat in their Mazda-3, waiting for me to move…
I’m not a jerk, and those people close to me would never suggest that I am. I’m actually a pretty nice, thoughtful guy most of the time.
But when I’ve been wronged in any way or perceive that I’m being taken advantage of, THAT is when I change my tune.
I’m pretty sure I inherited this unique way of dealing with people and situations (such as the parking space) from my father—the criminal lawyer who used to tell me, “There’s a difference between being nice, and being taken advantage of.”
I assume most people wouldn’t have dealt with this situation as I had, but I got my kicks out of it, and it was more fun than anything I could have watched on television last night.
Put 300 people in a building together, and tell them to live in harmony.
That sounds like a reality-TV show just waiting to happen…