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Sunday, June 12, 2005

 

Street Presence

Today's mini essay comes from my upbringing. My father always wanted me to join the forces when I was a boy. You know, travel the world, learn a trade, meet interesting people and occasionally kill them. For one reason or another (Failed medicals, lack of enthusiasm for outright mayhem), I never did. For all that he brought me up (With much arguing and fighting) under a fairly strict regime, leaving me with the habit of standing up straight (Lovely shoulders there boy) and looking people in the eyes when they are talking to me. To my mind, not to look at someone when they are talking to you is a calculated insult, as it implies you don’t think much of what they are saying. On the other hand, old friends have told me that sitting under the Bill Sticker patented steely gaze can be rather unsettling. My habit of standing quite still just watching, I have been told, is quite unnerving.

I like to call it ‘Street presence’. On patrol it’s meant as a deterrent for those tempted to lapse into poor parking habits and comes in three distinct phases;


    1. Passive. Watching (Scanning mode), making eye
      contact with drivers.
    2. Active. Locate erring vehicle, (Target
      Aquisition mode) prime hand held computer.
    3. Targeted. (Launch mode) Purposefully head towards errant
      vehicle(s).
At points 2 & 3, drivers can often be seen physically running to their wrongly parked vehicles. On one particular occasion it was like watching a Le Mans style start to a Grand Prix. A firm and unequivocal “Not on double yellows” answering the plaintive cries of “But where do we park!”

This tactic is very effective and comes in quite handy when you need to clear an entire street in a hurry. The purposeful stride, the ‘fistful of dollars’ stance and the ‘Doc Holliday’ style flip of your coat back from your hand held computers belt pouch followed by the scanning gaze which says “Which one of you punks wants to be first?” are all good tools. It’s quite amazing; the merest hint of a parking ticket is enough to start car engines at almost a hundred metres. Harry Potter – step aside.

Power. Don’t you just love it?

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Location: British Columbia, Canada

Exasperated expatriate expostulations all the way from British Columbia, Canada. As if anyone really cared. Oh, I also watch Icelandic Volcanoes and seismic activity. Don't ask me why.

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E-mail address : billsticker at gmail dot com

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