Horrors of the parking garage

Swipe after swipe after swipe, NKU faculty and students use their $200+ piece of green plastic to let themselves into NKU’s most sought after car hangout: the Kenton parking garage.

Parking on this campus has always, and I’m assuming, will always be a major hot button issue for NKU and its community. With the permanent closure of gravel Lot S behind Regents Hall, this issue has just inflamed a little bit more. I didn’t used to see the “Full” sign in all capital red letters at the entrance of the garage everyday, but now it’s a common thing.

Too many times, I’ve found myself an opponent to a race I didn’t know about. The other car always wins. They always get that spot that I was going after at 5 mph while they were barreling towards it at 25 mph to victory. Okay, maybe that’s a little exaggerated, but, I always swear up and down that I saw it first.

Let’s just say, parking garage etiquette is something I believe should be posted as an official NKU sign at all entrances to the various parking garages on campus. Or maybe taught at orientation.

We should learn that it is in fact more than a little creepy to walk to my car hearing and feeling the car closely following behind me in pursuit of my parking spot. Parking garages aren’t exactly known to be the safest places in the world after all, so why give people a reason to freak out? Being stalked to my car in efforts of getting my parking spot almost feels like an invasion of privacy. I always feel super rushed and self conscious about how long it takes me to get ready to pull out of my spot. Give me some space and I assure you, I will get out of the spot faster and more effectively without the added pressure, and you can have at that nice little parking space.

You’d think the people who want your spot so bad would give you enough space to pull out of your spot right? Wrong! Too many times I’ve felt so blocked in that there’s no way out without making myself look like a total amateur driver, when really, I just have no space. Nothing like feeling even more flustered after a long day of classes.

I always hate approaching the garage when I’m trying to get out of there at the same time as a hundred other people. I was once told that it’s perfectly acceptable to ease out of your spot showing off your brake lights, making people aware of the fact that you’d like to be let out instead of idling in your car for 15 minutes waiting for traffic to clear. However, shouldn’t it be more acceptable and encouraged to do your nice deed for the day and invite trapped parkers to join your line to the parking garage exit?

Sarcasm aside, parking is something that I feel will always gets tempers flaring, but having proper etiquette could cut down on the widespread amount of angry parking garage tweets, “mom I think someone’s stalking me” phone calls and the amount of occasions where people can’t help but tell one another that they’re number one.

I don’t know about you, but I always feel a little bit more positive when I let someone out of their spot, knowing that I made their day go a little smoother, even in such a small way.

Starting a little conversation by saying, “Hey are you about to leave? Mind if I take your parking spot?” can open doors you never even thought about! You never know, you might meet the love of your life or your new best friend as a result!

Letting someone out of their spot won’t delay you more than a few minutes at most and that wave of thank you is worth it, don’t you think?

Parking doesn’t have to be the most dreaded part about going to class. It could be another shrug-your-shoulders part of your routine filled with politeness and small talk designed to form the bonds that the NKU community boasts on the regular.

Let’s get it together people! Because, I haven’t heard of any plans to make our parking nightmares subside any time soon, and we’re all in this together!