Parallel Parking

Please note that this post may only make sense to people from Kansas City.*

When I was in Driver’s Ed, one of the things I had to learn how to do was parallel park. Because, you know, it’s kind of handy sometimes.

However, my instructor said:

Oh, you live in Johnson County. You’ll never need to parallel park.

Keep in mind, this was the late 90s and Downtown Kansas City had not yet gone through its revival. Downtown was a somewhat seedy place where you were unlikely to find white suburban girls hanging out and doing fun stuff. I’m not saying it was horrible and unsafe or anything like that, just that’s the perception that existed out in South Johnson County, where most of the kids wore Abercrombie & Fitch and Tommy Hilfiger clothing in an unironic sort of way and thought a ten year old car was like, way old.

Also? Why don’t you have a Backstreet Boys CD in your car? What do you mean, your car doesn’t have a CD player? Just a tape deck? That’s so five years ago.

You get the gist.

I really need to learn to parallel park properly someday. I can pull into spots, but I can’t wiggle in to proper parking spots. When I go to my favorite Chinese restaurant, when I visit the Crossroads, when I am trying to wait for someone downtown, when I try to find a parking spot on a crowded street…I think of that man and I curse him out in my head every time.

*If you’re not from Kansas City and actually read this, bravo.**

**But seriously, say hi in the comments. I’m curious about you now.***

***OK, not like that. Probably.****

****Now I’m just being ridiculous.*****


******Now I’m kind of weepy. If you know why, I again invite you to say hi in the comments.

7 thoughts on “Parallel Parking

      1. Best part is that I drive a really big truck and I’m always backing into parking spaces, which drives everyone nuts because they have trouble backing up a regular car, let alone a big honking truck.


  1. I learned to parallel park in driver’s ed – due in large part to our proximity to D.C….. Haven’t practiced it in years.


  2. I grew up in a small Kansas town (pop 2,000) and parallel parking was a big part of driver’s ed, but that was back in the early 80’s. LOL! When I went to college the majority of the (better) parking around the dorms were in residential areas off campus, unless you wanted to hike, so I learned to park in almost any space that was inches bigger than my car. Like you my daughter just completed driver’s ed here in JoCo and they didn’t even practice parallel parking let alone test them on it. It was just briefly covered in the classroom. I’ve told her she will learn how to parallel park before I let her drive my car on her own. 🙂


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