Head. Brick wall. Banging. Against.
It’s been one of those days again. The weather has improved, but the reading skills of the general public haven’t. After the uncounted time of hearing plaintive the excuse “But I didn’t know.” Delivered in a sort of unpleasant whine, I decided that it was time for no more Mister Nice Guy and began taking no prisoners, giving no more than the law allows for observation time. Here are a couple of samples of the idiocy I was faced with;
First example; Male driver who has parked his car on double yellows, blocking the footway with a ‘no loading’ restriction. Booked fair and square. I’d even allowed him five minutes waiting time; which I don’t have to when ‘No Loading’ is in force. Driver returns as I’m finishing my notebook to find a parking ticket on his car and storms over, waving said ticket under my nose aggressively. By this time of the day I’ve had enough and am not going to take any nonsense.
Driver “What d’you book me for?” Hello, another failed Mastermind contestant.
515 (Me) “Being stopped on double yellows.” And I’m not calling you sir, cur.
Driver “Yeah? I can do that.” Want to bet, pal?
515 “No you can’t, check your highway code.”
Driver “That don’t count. I saw that programme on telly, you got to give me ten minutes.” No, nope, nyet, non. Not true.
515 “You’re actually on an active loading restriction and I don’t have to give you any observation time at all.” (This is true children; and Uncle William doesn’t tell fibs like those silly TV programme makers who like to spice things up to make dull things seem exciting.)
Driver “Don’t you get sarcastic with me!”
515 (Finally losing it) “I’m allowed sarcasm sir; and irony. Complain to my boss and he’ll tell you the exactly same.” Turn on heel, walk away leaving Mister Thicko speechless. I’m sorry, this is the fifth one today and I’m all out of love with the rest of humanity.
Second example; Female driver on car park with out of time and out of date Pay and Display ticket on windscreen. To be sure, I did a quick visual check of the footwells and seats just in case the valid one had dropped out of sight. Again; I’ve issued and am meandering along the next level up when breathless female scuttles over with ticket in hand.
Driver (Shoving ticket under my nose so close I have to pull my head back six inches to read it) “What have you given me this for?” I pause a few seconds for effect as if reading it carefully.
515 “Parking without showing a valid pay and display ticket.”
Driver (Producing out of date P&D, trying same trick of putting it right under my nose so close I have trouble reading it.) “Here it is.”
515 “That was bought three days ago.”
Driver (So sweetly you’d think she was made of sugar.) “Ooh, was it. Silly me. This must be the wrong one. I do have it, I just can’t find it right now. So can you take this back?” Oh per-lease!
515 “Once I’ve issued madam, you have to take it up with my office. I am not allowed to take it back.”
Driver “That’s stupid!” No it isn’t, but you obviously think I am.
515 “Only my office can decide that. You’ll have to write to them.”
Driver “That’s no good!” This is getting so predictable.
515 “Suffice it to say madam, that is what you will have to do.”
Driver “Oh please. I promise I’ll buy one.” Aha! A confession. Put away the instruments, Igor.
515 (Delivered as a statement.) “So you didn’t buy one in the first place.”
Driver has the good grace to blush furiously and stand there trying to work up a crying fit while Mister Heartless (Me) turns and goes on his cruel and sadistic way. Just how dumb do you think I am? Not that dumb.
Well, they were taking the piss, so what do you do? I think I need a change of career or my head will implode.