Friday, June 01, 2012

Guilty Pleasure: Parking Wars

Not having cable, we have to resort to Netflix to see more of pop culture than what's on the broadcast networks.  A friend of mine tipped me off to A&E's Parking Wars, and we've been enjoying it ever since.  The shows are nice and short, and include an array of fascinating and passionate characters.  Each episode includes almost as many bleeps as your average Gordon Ramsay show, although almost never from the parking authority workers (to their credit).  And I love the cartoon-esque sound effects and graphics.

Yes, it's Reality TV, part of what's made cable channels stray afield from their names.  For example, when's the last time TLC had anything truly educational ("The Learning Channel")?  Only occasionally does A&E's History Channel swerve into anything historical anymore; I thought it was becoming the new all-Hitler channel, like A&E ("Arts and Entertainment") once was (O Jack Perkins, where art thou?).  And MTV, well, you know.  But shows like Parking Wars are popular and, more importantly, cheap to produce.

Anyway, things I have learned or remembered from watching Parking Wars:
  • I'd never do so, but I can see why people whose cars aren't worth much choose not to pay tickets and let their car get booted, towed, and auctioned off.  Of course, they still have to pay anyway.
  • I bet the various parking authorities didn't have quite as much to do back in the 1970's and before when each house had one car . . . maybe.
  • People lose all sense of time when they park illegally.  Only in the store "ten seconds"?  Really.
  • While it's important not to park in handicapped spaces, and they are needed, it's also true that, generally speaking, there are more handicapped spaces than necessary.
  • I regularly check to make sure my current registration and insurance are in the car.
  • Flashers/hazard lights never excuse illegal parking.  Ever.
  • In college, I frequently parked on a street where parking was only allowed during off-peak hours.  Never stayed too long, but I remember there was a fire hydrant.  I may have parked too close to it a time or two (not blocking it), but I wasn't ticketed.
  • Philly ticket writer Brian has the proper attitude to be a pro wrestler or wrestling manager.  My other favorites include Sherry and Garfield; Marlene, a "hon" who would fit in perfectly in my former home of Glen Burnie, MD; and DeAndre "Ponytail" from Detroit.
  • Philadelphia accents bear a strong resemblance to Baltimore ("Bawlamer") accents.  The neighborhoods of the two cities also look a lot alike.  So maybe the show makes this Bawlamer boy a little homesick, although it's not set in Charm City.  Yet.


C. said...

The accents of Baltimore and Philly are close but I hear both on a daily basis and have never been wrong in identifying where someone is from. I think because you hear hints of a NY accent in a Philly accent, you don't hear that in Baltimore.