Wednesday, February 24, 2010

police called over snow-shovelled "reserved" parking space incident on Thomas St NW

From a resident on the 100 block of Thomas Street NW:

After reading so many wonderful reports of neighbors acting in a neighborly way throughout the last few weeks, I have an unfortunate (unneighborly) incident to report. On Saturday morning, my husband walked out to our car to find that it had been vandalized.

A neighbor living at xxx Thomas Street NW [near Thomas & 1st Street NW] wrote in some type of black marker all over the driver's side window of our car (I won't repeat the cursing on our window).

Not only did this neighbor admit to vandalizing our car, he continued to yell at us when asked to confirm whether he did this and freely admitted the action to the police when called. He even went as far as talking about how great all the neighbors had been during the storm and using that as an excuse to vandalize our property (ironic considering we had writing all over our car window from him).

The neighbor (although I hate to even call him that) accused us of parking in "his spot." I would like to point out that while I understand that he may have put in time shoveling out "his spot," so did we (and "our spot" has been filled since we first moved our car) and many of our other neighbors (who have also returned to first come first serve parking for the same reasons).

I'd also like to note, that not only was Thomas Street continually plowed during the storm, that as of the end of last week, the only snow restricted space on Thomas Street was the entrance way to the alley, the no parking space in front of the fire hydrant and the handicapped spot. The snow has not been a problem for parking in several days.

My note to you - Beware of parking anywhere near xxx Thomas Street.

The residents of xxx Thomas Street NW didn't bother to introduce themselves (not surprisingly). We did call the police and filed a report, but I don't believe an arrest was made. The police stopped came by about an hour after we made the report, but the marker the guys had since gotten the marker (or whatever it was) mostly off the glass. The police noted that they needed to see the window to take any further action.

It seems like such a silly matter but the fact that we had to deal with this from neighbors (grown adults too) is still a bit shocking to me.


  1. That's too bad, really obnoxious for people to feel as though they have a right to claim public space like that, and then childishly decided to vandalize private property because their claim didn't stand. We all had to dig out after the storm, the vandal on Thomas Street did not have a unique situation.

    To all those that are STILL reserving a spot (are you kidding me - two weeks after the storm??), I will be moving your 'reservation' marker to the sidewalk and will park in your space if there are no other options. Please get over it.

  2. Unfortunately we've seen similar on Randolph with people continuing to "save" their spots long after (most of) the snow has gone. I can't believe the police didn't do more!

  3. I'm a long time resident on 2nd and U St, some of us folks dug out our vehicles many times and then there are folks who haven't even cleaned their sidewalks! I've seen tables, chairs, stools and baby toys saving spaces, if some punk parked in the space I cleaned, I'd whup their ass.

  4. Now c'mon Anonymous... Really, has it come to 'whup their ass' comments? I believe in being respectful of someone's spot - and I believe in being respectful of the unwritten rules governing street parking, but if left no other feasible alternative, the street is public domain and should be used without violence or threats of violence and certainly without vandalism... BTW, I'm also a long time resident of Bloomingdale (as though that garners additional points).

    'enuf said...

  5. To the angry man or woman: I urge you to consider creating a parking spot on your lot, renting a parking spot elsewhere, or moving some place where there are garages. Otherwise, if you don't want to lose your spot on the street two weeks after a snow storm, don't move your car.
    (As if I need to share my bonafides -- I dug out three spots.)

  6. I wish I was entitled as much as some of the people in the neighborhood. I guess I just wasn't born with such entitlement in my character. Good for them though...they should feel like they are the mayor of the neighborhood and do what they want when they want, how they want. I am not going to stop them though...because they are entitled to be the negative sacks that they are. I am sure they are smiling inside all the time though...when you have that much entitlement, you have to be loving life!!! No need to be neighborly at all...

    Flagler PL Resident.

  7. Really people! It's easy for you to all bitch and rant like entitled kids, but just as long as it's all "anonymous".
    Is it just me or doesn't it bother any one else that the handicapped parking (like they don't really need it?) and the fire hydrant is still covered over? Doesn't any one else feel that this is a real hazard and shouldn't you be more concerned about clearing the fire hydrant?

  8. Why dont you dig out the hydrant alicia?

  9. Hey Alicia, what is your address?

  10. What! You called the police over a magic marker message left on your car window? Are you serious? And then the perp returned to clean it off for you? Wow, I would say you got off pretty easy. I've seen a lot worse happen to cars parked in someone else's snow spot. I used to live in Boston and if you pulled into someone's snow spot your car would be trashed with a baseball bat and set on fire before you got back to your house. Man, you just didn't do that. Even in the summertime it was a big risk to park in front of someone else's house. It was just one of those unwritten laws that everyone followed.It actually worked well, my parking spot was always open. Maybe the rule should be if you see a spot being saved beyond a date you think reasonable - dont take it - that is too provocative and not very neighborly. Park somewhere else and tell the "owner" of the spot the next day that it is time to go back to the old system of first come first serve. Everybody talks, everybody is happy no unwanted window grafitti and no cops. Everybody wins.

  11. T St, why you wanna visit? Alicia

  12. I'm just becoming familiar with this blog, but very happy this parking issue during the storm was brought up. I think the people who were saving their "spots" were OBNOXIOUS... case closed. During the storms I continually cleaned my car out and shoveled around it so there was a path to the street (pretty neighborly I think because days beyond the storm it was one of the few pathways for people to walk). I moved my car within a week because I had to go to work and immediately lost my GREAT, clean, close to my house spot. I accepted that as how it is (it's a public street, NOT my personal property) and knew I'd have to circle each night to find a new place to park. What killed me is that someone in my neighborhood actually had the nerve to start saving MY spot with a chair on a daily basis. One day as I was leaving for work I was so annoyed, I picked that chair up and put it on the sidewalk! AND then an even more ridiculous event occurred. About 1.5 weeks later my landlord had some people at the house doing repairs. That spot was open when they came, so they parked their truck in it (and they had heavy equipment so it was sort of important to park close). A neighbor had apparently put a cone there and the story I heard is that she wrote a rather nasty note and yelled at them for taking "her spot." I didn't witness the event but she got fired up and there was some yelling. Seriously people, get a grip. We all need to share our public, shared space and NOONE had a right to reserve street spaces - no matter how hard they worked (or didn't work) to clean them out. If everyone with a car had done their due diligence to properly clean out their space during the storms, this wouldn't have even been a problem....