Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Enjoying the Great Outdoors

There are some other urban folks who seem to enjoy the outdoors, year-round. Here are some personal observations.

There is a corps of dedicated runners who feel the call, year-round, rain or shine.

There are also dog people. I see 'em walking up and down the street, and at the park, year round. Walkin' their dogs. Throwin' frisbees... or better yet, throwin' tennis balls with those arm-extension catapult things. There must be something in certain dog-breed DNA that makes 'em want to chase that ball! They'll keep chasin' for longer than most owners will keep throwin'.

Another group is the smokers. (They enjoy the outdoors, right?) There are probably a dozen at my office building. On beautiful, perfect days, I see 'em out there on the front sidewalk, and I'm a bit jealous. I think I oughtta take up smoking, so I could join 'em! But then I see 'em on wet, windy, nasty winter days, facing away from the arctic blast... shivering and smoking. And I'm always glad I didn't join 'em.

Another group has come to my attention more recently. It's the car movers group at the office. Let me explain.

The office is surrounded by "2 hour parking" stalls. Park there longer, and you risk getting a ticket.

There is a group of people that parks in those spots, first thing in the morning. Then, 2 hours or so later, they take the elevator to the ground floor, walk out, start up the car, and find a different 2-hour parking spot, somewhere else around the block. Repeat every 2 hours all day. Repeat every workday.

What's with that?

(I got curious, because for month after month, I've noticed some of the same cars, parked in those 2-hour spots. And I finally asked the security guy. He confirmed that the drivers are in and out all day, moving their car from stall to stall.)

Their motivation can't be saving time, because how much time would be spent engaged in the cause, by the end of the day? Nor can it be saving effort, I wouldn't think. They could park for free in an all-day spot, 2 blocks away. Surely it would be fewer steps-taken, when all is said and done. Or they could do like other car commuters, and actually PAY for a semi-convenient parking space. Do they think they're being clever, and pullin' a fast one on da man? And I'm no expert... but starting a cold engine, running it for maybe 2 minutes, then shutting it off? That's hard on motors, isn't it? I'd like to get in the head of those folks and understand what they're thinkin'.


Unknown said...

totally noticed this phenomenon. they tend to eat out a lot as well. what can be done about it?

bob t said...

I think that the car movers are just trying to minimize the number of steps they need to take at the beginning and at the end of their workday. Having to move their car throughout the day gives them an excuse to take a break from their work every 2 hours.

dvicci said...

bob t is far more optimistic about human nature than I am. My first thought is that they are, at their own expense, and feeling a false sense of pride, merely thumbing their nose at "The Man"... and will continue to do so no matter the inconvenience to themselves, both short and long term. One word springs to mind to describe that sort of behavior... "immature."

Clancy said...

The real question is, Do the car movers have a greater tendency to smoke? Then they could kill 2 birds with 1 stone.

Bikeboy said...

I observe a lot of driving smokers who keep the window rolled down, and their butt (the CIGARETTE butt) hangin' in the great out-of-doors.

Must not want to stink up their cars, huh?

(What a nasty habit! I'm constantly amazed when I see KIDS smoking... like even with all they know, they decide they want smoking to be an integral part of their lives.)