Park It!

It’s been a parking lot few days for me.

There is a strip mall near Nonny’s place that we visited more than once (Panera, post office, UPS store, Walgreens and Starbucks – we had a lot of errands to run).  It is very poorly designed, with parking spaces laid out every which way and with some one-way arrows that everybody ignores.

YA’s game of choice on her iPad this weekend was Parking Jam – in which you have to get all the cars out of a parking lot without jumping any berms to crashing into other vehicles. 

Then when I ran out to get a few things this morning before work, I drove by the backside of the Hub parking lot.  If you have ever seen the backside of the Hub parking lot, you’ll know that it is just wasted real estate.  All the entrances to the mall are on the other side and no one parks in the back – not even employees.  But this morning I noticed that in the last week they have re-painted all the parking lines back there.  What a complete waste of paint and time!

I mentioned to YA when I got home that clearly parking lot design must be a completely neglected part of architecture school – they can’t teach this and have so many folks be so bad at it?  Or can they?

Were you a good student at school?

45 thoughts on “Park It!”

  1. And the lots that badly need to have the parking lines repainted never do…

    I was a good student – that desire to please played a part, plus I had early on a string of kind and fine teachers. And I ‘m naturally curious about a lot of things, until we got to analytical geometry.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Nonny and I just had this conversation over the weekend about good/poor teachers. She says I had all great teachers and my middle sister, who did very poorly in school, had all bad teachers. I argued the point that my teachers “seemed” great because I was a great student. Nonny wasn’t having any of that….

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    Would parking lot design fall under architecture or civil engineering? I don’t know. I did just notice, because I just bought Lyle Lovett tickets, that the evil Ticketmaster now sells parking along with the concert ticket for $6, which is not bad for parking.

    I was an OK student (excellent history student, terrible math and science student) who had too many other things going on to really excel. I was responsible for a lot of child care, invalid care, and running the household as a teen, so studying came in third to those things . AND girls did not much encouragement in the 60s to excel — it might impair your chances to attract a husband if you appeared too smart. In college I was on the Dean’s LIst. In grad school I did very well.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Well, I was Summa cum laud when I graduated from college. In grad school, my main goal was just to pass. C grades were considered a failure in grad school. I was content with B’s, and happy when I got A’s. Both our kids did better in grad school than as undergraduates.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I was a mostly-A student. A few Bs. Proud that I never got a C in anything through jr high, high school, and college (no letter grades in elementary). Part of that “success” was choosing classes I thought I would enjoy. But I put in the time reading and studying too. Especially in college, when I (or my folks) were paying for that education, then hell yeah, I was going to get my money’s worth.

    Regarding parking lots: I love a freshly paved (especially asphalt) and lined parking lot. So nice to look at. Not a fan of crowded lots with narrow spaces that make it tough to enter and exit a vehicle without dinging the neighboring car. Also not a fan of lots where the lines have worn off and it’s a freakin’ free for all as to where the spaces SHOULD be. Always fun to park in a lot in winter when snow covers the lines and no one’s sure where the center line is for two rows of cars to align to, nose-to-nose. Only takes about six cars before the line is curving one way or the other.

    Regarding architecture school: I can imagine there’s a lack of attention to that area. My BA in Music Ed. was woefully short of many teaching basics that I wish I had known from day one but had to learn the hard way on the front line teaching in my school. I’ll bet overlooking certain competencies happens in many, if not most, disciplines.

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I was a good student in everything but math (algebra was an absolute disaster). I was one of only two girls (at that time, anyway) to finish all 4 years of high-school Latin–besides the challenge, the only other language was German and I had no interest in that. For a “treat” at the end of senior year, we studied Ancient Greek for a month or two. Poor old Pastor Luebchow, I wonder if he managed to inspire even one of his students (male only, of course) to go on to the ministry?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Regarding architecture, I have a longstanding grudge against architects. None of them seem to know how to build a library anymore. Whether it’s building it into a drainage slope to the river, slanting the windowsills inward so that black mold grows on the walls, or exposing an entire history section to direct sun (from the west!), they only care about the look and nothing about the utility of the building. Classical/traditional architecture couldn’t return soon enough for me, although that’s probably a futile wish at this point.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. When I drive my truck, I alway back into a spot on the curb so the box is out of the way. Course I don’t try to park downtown either and certainly no ramps. Because I drive an extra long truck.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I can’t say I was a good student.
    I was a good student in elementary school. That led to my being placed in a group of “accelerated” students who basically skipped seventh grade and entered junior high at the eighth grade level. If we maintained that momentum, we would be able to graduate a year earlier. No one ever offered an explanation why that would be a good thing. The accelerated students were, for the most part, students for whom school came easily and who never needed to work hard to do well. Speaking for myself, I was an indifferent student. I wasn’t working toward any particular goal, was not seeking academic acclaim or to please anyone. My grades, without any special attention on my part, were acceptable. I never felt a competitive urge to stand out.

    Even without the competitive urge to be seen as a exemplary student, I could have been more engaged and demanding of myself and I suspect I would have gotten more out of school. I’m not sure, in reflection, that what was being taught at that time was particularly valuable but I might have gained a more mature sense of myself.

    The best and most essential parts of my education have come after finishing school. I’m more engaged and more persistent as an autodidact.

    Liked by 2 people

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  8. I was and continue to be a good student.
    That D I got in first quarter algebra in 9th prompted a determination to improve. Final grade was a B.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. I think today’s question is a bit tricky. It depends on how you define “good student.” Is a good student the one with the highest IQ who quickly grasps the material, and who gets top grades? Is it the nice, clean, agreeable student, who never rocks the boat, and always turns in their homework on time? Or is it the disheveled kid, who struggles with the most basic skills, but who shines in creative pursuits?

    Like Bill, I excelled in elementary school, and like him, I skipped a grade and entered high school a year early. I scraped by in high school with average grades that were not indicative of what I was capable of. Rather than going straight from high school to college, I spent the ensuing nine years traveling, working abroad, and generally trying to figure out who I was and what I wanted to do with my life. I was twenty-six when I was admitted at S.I.U., and did well enough to graduate with honors.

    Looking back, however, I wasn’t what I would consider a good student, though most of my teachers would probably have said that I was. At S.I.U. my scholarship depended on two things: maintaining a B average, and carrying a full course load of twelve credits every quarter. Neither of these requirements encouraged taking courses that had a reputation for being difficult. It was much safer sticking to courses that even the most dimwitted student could pass. There’s no doubt in my mind that I could have learned a lot more had I not been so concerned about maintaining my grade-point average. In all honesty, though, I don’t know if I would have had the wisdom at the time to realize that and acted on it. I do know that there was much political turmoil at the time, and by my junior year, my personal life was fraying at the seams, both of which distracted enormously from studying.

    I’m a much better student now when I’m fully in charge of what I’m exploring, and no one that I care about is assessing my performance. Or maybe I should say, maybe they are, and I just don’t know or care about it. There’s something freeing about not having to live up to other people’s expectations of you.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Good thoughts about what constitutes a “good student”.

      PJ – I’d never put it together that all that traveling you did and working abroad was before you went to college… Must have really been interesting to be a student then.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. There’s no question in my mind, BiR, that I learned a lot in those years, and that by the time I entered college, I was a much more engaged student. I had several college professors write me notes at the end of a quarter telling me that I had been a breath of fresh air in their courses. This was especially true of mandatory freshman and sophomore classes when half of the students where clueless and couldn’t have cared less.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I was surprised by two of my high school classmates who were never identified as stellar students, but went on to become very competent physicians. There also were classmates who had higher GPA’s than I did who didn’t do much at all after graduation.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. I was a decent student.
    I’m a better one now because I’m doing it because I want too.

    Wessex, I thought this was the one that had to be done:

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Wow! The name “Pink Floyd” is, of course, familiar to me, but I have never to my knowledge listened to a whole song performed by them. This is spectacular! I’m not particularly fond of all of the flashing lights, especially toward the end of this, but what an incredible sound. I love discovering music that is new to me and that speaks to me. This does. Thanks, Ben. I can imagine that given your involvement with lighting, that at least part of the appeal of this, is just that.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Glad to be of service! You’re Absolutely right, the lighting is spectacular. This song is missing the giant 50’ circular screen that drops into the background and the lighting around that is fantastic. This entire concert is one of those “go-to”s for concert lighting.
        Anna and I both saw Pink Floyd in 1986 at the metro-dome.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Yes, I once was given a ticket to a performance by the TransSiberian Orchestra, and I had to keep my eyes closed through most of the performance because of the flashing lights. This performance would’ve been problematic for that same reason. I can watch it on YouTube without flinching, though.


        1. Oh yeah, TSO is almost too much. The first part of the concert is practically overwhelming, then the second half gets even BIGGER!
          It’s impressive, but it borders on too much. (From a purely technical, design standpoint.)


  12. During the pandemic, I took several free online classes and one from Harvard that I paid for, just so I could get some feedback. That class required a lot of subjective analysis and a lot of writing. My responses, if I say so myself, were original, well thought out and in depth. The trouble with the course was that all the papers were reviewed and graded by “peers”. The trouble was that I never felt that I had any peers. I would write something challenging and provocatively different from what I was reading from the other students, many of whom seemed to be doing the absolute minimum, and the response I might get from my so-called peers would be something like “Interesting”.

    I really longed for an instructor or someone who would recognize what I was asserting or would challenge it or give me some intelligent response — someone with whom I could interact on a dynamic level. I enjoyed the writing but felt like I was sending it off into the void. Disappointing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think I know what you’re talking about, Bill. If you offer something that’s original, different, and perhaps contrary to the standard (and not just for the sake of being contrarian), it’s disappointing if no one wants to go there with you.

      Some years ago, I was in a creative writing group for about a year, and one of the things that I loved about the group was that every single member was genuinely interested in the stories that others told. They offered meaningful comments and suggestions about how a story could be improved; what they found distracting, or didn’t move the story forward; insights that were really helpful to the writer. “Interesting” is about as noncommittal as a comment can get; essentially a giant yawn.


  13. I don’t really know if I’m a good student or not. I’m pretty good at taking tests if they are multiple choice. I am just good enough at mastering the subject matter to pick out the correct answer with reasonable accuracy. Life is not a multiple choice test, though, regrettably.

    Liked by 2 people

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