THE BLOG

Why Is it So Difficult to Park a Car?

30/07/2015 11:13 BST | Updated 29/07/2016 10:59 BST

Most people can sit down on the toilet without falling into the bowl. Most people have the ability to walk through a doorway without smashing into the wall beside it. Most people don't poke their own eyes out using the arms on the frames when putting on sunglasses. Most people don't pour boiling water all over the kitchen counter when trying to make a mug of tea or coffee. Most people have co-ordination to a good enough standard that they can go about their daily lives without any physical harm coming to them.

So it makes me question just why there are so many road users - who display the ability to burst through small gaps at speeds that would make airline pilots go "gee, steady on" - that cannot leave their car parked between two straight lines. Why is that?

Is there some sort of magnetic field around them that will stop the car from pointing parallel to the two marks on the ground? Does somebody come along afterwards and repaint the lines so that they aren't in the right place? Does erosion take effect to the tarmac, meaning the car shifts over the course of a day?

What is it?

Rarely a day goes by where I don't end up in a car park that looks like the scene from a disaster movie, where vehicles have been left abandoned. All it would need is for a few to still have doors open to round off the illusion that they were deserted by those attempting to flee the terror that was destroying the city behind them. Set a few small fires and flatten a few buildings and it could have been a dead ringer for a scene from The Walking Dead.

I just don't understand the thought process. On coming to a halt in a line of empty spaces, nobody could possibly get out of the vehicle and not spot that they were sprawled across two bays. There's not a person on the planet who wouldn't close their driver side door and fail to see their two sets of tyres are perched either side of a white mark on the floor. Do these people slam the door shut, observe the situation and wander away thinking, 'another job well done!'?

It can't escape their notice that flinging the vehicle into the car park via catapult would have produced more accurate results than that haphazard driving did, so how difficult is it to hop back into the driver's seat and straighten it up? It can't be that time consuming to pull forward a bit, adjust the direction and slot it back into the space, can it?

Worse are the wankers who line their vehicle up perfectly on one of the lines, meaning the adjacent bay is unusable. That actually takes a modicum of talent and no small amount of intent, since it almost guarantees that the casual observer walking past won't judge them as a wanker when they're being a wanker, since it just looks like an empty space has been left beside them. But they know exactly what they're doing - it's all a ploy to make sure the car isn't accompanied by another.

It's like sitting on the aisle seat on a train when travelling alone and putting your bag beside you.

Similarly, there are the motorists who drive ever so slightly into the space ahead of them (or behind them, depending on the car's location and whether it's a forward or reverse park manoeuvre). It's another way of making sure that nobody else comes near to the vehicle - hey, why not park on the cross of the four bay to ensure a maximum perimeter is set up between yourself and the rest of the driving world? That's like sticking your feet on the opposite train seat - when the car park is full it's akin to smiling and waving at the passengers standing up in the vestibule as you do it.

I'm by no means the world's greatest driver - in fact, I'm nothing more than bang average - but Christ, in the name of Abraham's right bollock, it's not hard to put a car between two lines. You've got as many attempts at it as you like; it doesn't need to be done first time. If you're worried that you've parked like a dick, then restart the process. Don't stop and think, 'well - there's nothing anyone could have done about that.'

Just have a bit of bloody consideration for everyone else who'd like to get on with their day instead of hunting for a space that their car will fit into.