Things were simpler when kids just walked to school. There was a need to have a few crossing guards along the way, but that was about it. The biggest problem at my school growing up was not enough bike racks.
Now, the parking lots are too small.
Head to any school between 2:30 and 3:30 and you’ll think there was a warehouse sale on Mom Jeans inside. SUVs line the block up and down and around my sons school every day at dismissal.
The moms sit there pecking away at their smartphones (I say “Moms” because the ratio of Moms to Dads at school pick-up is that of an Oprah audience). while their Land Rovers and X5s and Caravans purr away. Dismissal at my son’s school is 3:25, show up any later than 3 and you’re walking a block or more to get a spot – it’s a competitve sport.
Daily emails come from the school, often with reminders about parking lot etiquette and safety. People will park in the drop off lane, they will pull U-Turns when not allowed, or they will get in full blown shouting matches. It’s ridiculous.
Today I arrived at the school at 3:10. Too late to get a prime spot, I drove slowly down the lane until I found an almost big enough spot.
(That’s the other things about Moms and their SUVs, you sit up so high, the hood so large, that you cannot see where your front or back is – so 2/3 of a small car spots are left up and down the street.)
I pulled even with the Land Rover and tooted her. She ignored me. I tooted again and gave a polite shrug and gesture asking her to scootch into the 6+ feet in front of her so I could slide in behind. (see pic below)
She pretended to ignore me for another second before looking up and dropping an eff bomb on me.
Really? We’re at an elementary school to pick up our young kids, I ask you to scootch your car so I can pick up my kid and you tell me to go eff myself? I rolled down my passenger window, and leaned on my horn. For 15 seconds.
She didn’t budge. She put her face back in her phone and pretended to ignore me. The car behind tooted at me, and had moved back so I could have room. I pulled in.
I then went to the Land Rover window to say “What the -? I just wanted you to move.” She pretended to ignore me again, and then pulled her iPhone out and took my picture.
So that just happened.
She then pecked away at her text messages and put the phone to her ear as if she was calling authorities.
The woman who had backed up is actually one of the parking lot supervisors. I’ve shared shocked conversations with her about parent behaviour as I walked my son to school in the past. She couldn’t believe what she had seen, but at the same time recognized it as typical.
I tried waiting for Land Rover, knowing she’d have to eventually get out of the car to get her kid, but I couldn’t make my son wait any longer. By the time I had gotten back from getting my son, she was gone.