I’m passing through that way around fiveish when I come across a Blue Volkswagen Beetle, A Green Ford Fiesta, and a Grey Porsche Boxster all parked half way up on the footway, one after the other. No wrestling with conscience; No loading; No mercy. All three got a ticket within five minutes and rightly so in my book because they were forcing pedestrians out into the road and messing up the flow of rush hour traffic. I’d just finished writing up my notes when all three drivers came out of the shop they had been patronising and saw what I’d done.
Next thing I know I’m neck deep in outrage. “We were loading!” Shouted one. Doesn’t matter, can’t you read the signs?
“You can’t do this!” Protested another. Oh yes I ca-an.
“We were delivering stuff.” Says the third rather weakly.
“Gentlemen; with me.” I told them, beckoning them towards the rather unambiguous plate on the wall of the shop they had been ‘delivering’ to. Tapping the sign rather ostentatiously (Did I mention I’m a six footer?) with my pen I delivered my short lesson. “You cannot load here between the hours of eight and ten and four and seven.” I pointed at the single kerb marking, mercifully intact. “You may not even stop here during those hours.”
“Yeah, but where we gonna park?” Protested one.
“Over there.” I pointed to a pay and display car park less than fifty metres away. “Over there.” A set of pay and display bays at the other end of the street. “Over there.” At this point my mischievous little inner demons are telling me to burst out laughing. “Oh yes, and just round the corner.”
The end of my little lecture was greeted with grumbles and moans of protest. So what’s new? The Porsche driver looked especially aggrieved and was about to mouth off at me when an outraged female voice came from behind. “These yours!?” Two middle class ladies with posh pushchairs had just had to brave rush hour traffic to get their precious cargo past the parked cars. “Book them Officer! Book them!” One of them demanded. Already done Madam. I nodded towards the vehicles, one of which was still sporting its little ‘Bill Sticker was here’ windscreen badge. Two of the three drivers stepped back from the explosion of female outrage, but the third tried to have a go back (I think it was the Porsche pilot). “It’s none of your sodding business!”
“Yes it bloody is, I’ve just had to take my children into the middle of the bloody road to get past your fucking car!” She screeched. Well I bet she didn’t learn that kind of language at finishing school. “In rush hour!”
“So what!” Bellowed Mr Consideration 1921.
“Excuse me!” I raised my voice. “Excuse me!”
“Fuck off!” Snapped the driver, turning round to glare at me. I ignored the angry words and set my face in a ‘take no nonsense’ expression. “That’s quite enough sir, or shall I call a Police Officer?” I said mildly, putting my hand rather obviously on my radio. Of course I was bluffing, but he wasn’t to know that. I shifted my gaze to the two women and raised my eyebrows. “Can I deal with this madam?” I looked the angriest in the eyes and tilted my head on one side. Funnily enough this is a Dog / Wolf gesture which seems to work jolly well with humans too. Don’t you just love nonverbal communication. Her mouth tightened and with a frustrated “Ooh.” She and her friend bimbled away to disturb the peace with their squalling toddlers at the nearest Coffee Shop.
Turning back to the three slightly discomfited drivers I cocked an eyebrow. “Gentlemen, may I suggest you start your engines?” I said, feeling awfully smug.
Do you know what? That’s exactly what they did. Bloody hell fire.
How evil are you?
How evil are you link c/o Tom Paine