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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Press “1” to Have Your Brain Towed to An Impound Lot

Beep-beep-beep! Bee-bee-boo-beep!

“Thank you for calling the City of Minneapolis Snow Emergency Hot Line.

“To have the Snow Emergency Rules explained to you, please complete the following transaction: Press “1” for English, “2” for Hmong, “3” for Somali, “4” for Tagalog, “5” for it to be delivered to you in a Cockney accent or “6” to have someone come to your house and spell it out on your fridge with magnetized letters.

Beep!


“Thank you for choosing “English”.

“Snow Emergencies are a set of predefined parking regulations that allow crews to completely clear streets of accumulating snow.

“Today is DAY TWO of the City of Minneapolis Snow Emergency. Do not park on the even side of the street between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. or until plowed. You can park on the odd side of the street following 8:00 p.m., once it’s been plowed, or if you are under 5 feet tall.

“If you are under five feet tall and cannot move your car after 8:00 p.m., please call the police and sit in your car on a telephone book until help arrives. Try not to look adorably tiny.

“You may park on either side of streets with the red sign "Snow Emergency Route", but you may not park on either side of a parkway, despite it sounding like you could.

“Do not park on the even side of a non-Snow Emergency route. Maps of non-Snow Emergency routes may be obtained by contacting a local government official or by staring into a mirror in a dark room and saying “Bloody Snow Emergency, Bloody Snow Emergency, Bloody Snow Emergency” three times – whichever one frightens you less.

“A Snow Emergency will be declared no later than 6 p.m. , but you are free to move your car to whatever side of the street seems to have the most cars on it in the hopes that your neighbors know something you do not.

“Please remember that public opinion will not save you, however; and we are happy to tow whole blocks at a towing fee of $185 a pop and a subsequent ticket of $130 each.

“If you have further questions, please stay on the line and someone will be with you shortly to abuse you in a barely understandable urban-based slang.

"Current wait time is 749 minutes."

Beep!

48 comments:

Simply Suthern said...

Theres got to be a better way to get that info out there. Who has that many letter magnets on their fridge??

Today is the second day of 70+ weather. It's insane. But comfy.

I am pretty sure we dont have emergency snow parking rules here.

You may park anywhere you please unless there is a ball game in town in which you may not park in your designated spot even tho you paid for it so the team owners can make money pimping out your spot.

Pearl said...

Simply, :-) They've got it automated to your cellphone now as well, which has really cut the number of cars towed. One pities the second and third shifters, though... Ya gotta wonder what those folk wake up to sometimes.

SherilinR said...

i'm so glad that i no longer dwell in a snowy location. what about when you dig your car out of a snowbank - can you put a chair of some sort in its spot so that no one else will park there before you return?

bill lisleman said...

magnetized letters service - that would be a fun service to offer.
You need a really huge fridge to hold these rules. Also all those magnets could alter navigation and the northern lights.

Shelly said...

I would need a tutor for the snow rules. I would also need a language option for Texan.

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

They don't offer stripograms?

Pearl said...

Sherilin, I've heard of the "leaving a chair for your space" thing, but I've not seen that in Minneapolis. Not saying it doesn't happen. In areas where it does, I have to wonder how many people are beaten for taking someone's hard-dug spot. Justifiable, if you ask me. I mean, you didn't dig it, did you? So you know someone else did!!

lisleman, could actually shift the poles! (Maybe that's what happened to the dinosaurs?!)

Pearl said...

Shelly, there are no Texans here. :-) The lack of a good mole sauce keeps them out.

Delores, do you know what I would give to have someone come to my house and remove their clothes while they sang the Snow Emergency Rules to me?! I wouldn't hear a word of it, of course, but I'd have the visual to fall back on while I was waiting in line at the impound lot.

Ali - My Suitcase Full of Tricks said...

You crack me up!

Camille said...

Yup - twelve inches of snow expected over here today.

No parking bans to worry about, just the local town plow truck making sure they push and drop a thick wall of the stuff at the end of my driveway. It will be the consistancy of concrete. It will also require I get a running start down my driveway in order to effectively launch my auto up and over the hump. It will possibly rip out my exhaust system. Shovel away the snow first? Pffftt! Where's the challenge in that?

So - remind me again, when is the first day of spring?

esbboston said...

I was a runner-up in a poetry contest several years ago. I think the grand prize was a Volkwagen Beetle. My prize was a box of magnetic words.

Sausage Fingers said...

What...no Scottish? bloody English stealing our thunder again.
I know I am a bastard but how do you feel about 84 degrees on March 1st?
So close to almost beach weather
heading south this year....
Sausage.

Symdaddy said...

There's snow business like snow business!

Pearl said...

Ali, I'm glad!

Camille, I'm familiar with the ol' Let's-take-a-running-jump-at-this-snow process. :-) Hope springs eternal!

esb, there's probably a poem in there somewhere!

SF, 84 degrees? Why do people in the South lie to me?! There is no beach, there is no sunshine. La la la la laaaa. Looking to come down again in April, however, so please do hang on to the beach weather for me -- I'll be one of those silly twits in the surf while the locals shiver because the water's "too cold". :-)

Symdaddy, Like snow business I snow! (And now I have Ethel Merman in my head. Great.) :-)

Leenie said...

It takes perseverance to make it in snow country. No dinosaurs or tanned skin survives.

The Jules said...

Your snow is very oblliging to follow all those rules.

Laurel's Quill said...

Who are the people who make up these phone trees??? Push 1 to hang up! I am reminded how idiotic the media can also be during snow season here it CA. Yes, it snows in the Sierras...every year. But NO, we gotta send a news team up to Blue Canyon on the interstate, watch him talk into a microphone during the blizzard, run up a snow bank, just so we at home can see how much snow there really is...and of course, while we get stuck in the snowbank, we shake the snow off a few tree branches. Good stuff for the news, huh.? Who ARE these people????

Joshua said...

I could use a snow day.

jenny_o said...

In our little town, we know the plows will be clearing snow when we find the little plastic bags hung over the parking meters. Also when the snowbanks get to be over two feet tall. It's all very civilized.

But not so much fun as your snow emergency rules!

crowbloke said...

discraceful behaviour, i like the fridge-letter comunication option, so much friendlier than a text message. i have a spare shovel if you need one.

CarrieBoo said...

1!

I so needed that laugh. And I'm really glad I have fridge magnets.

L-Kat said...

Fargo's emergency snow removal makes absolutely no sense either. This is mainly because there is no emergency snow removal plan. In a state that gets a ton of snow. Six lane roads become two lanes by the end of winter and every corner is a gamble with your life because you can't see over the six foot high banks. No sense at all.

Sioux said...

Could you send some of that snow our way? I'm begging for a snow day, and we have not had one. (Today it's so warm, we're out without a jacket, in short sleeves. It's making the ground too soft and warm--if we ever DO get any snow, it won't stick!)

Joanne said...

Did you have a snow emergency? Sounds like the ones we used to have, except we only had the choice of two languages....

fishducky said...

Your "Snow Emergency" parking rules make perfect sense to me--but,then again, I'm senile!

Perpetua said...

I'd rather be snowed in on top of a Welsh hillside than cope with that, pearl. Enough to send you insane....

Belle said...

When I saw about Minnasota weather on TV I thought about you Pear. I was actually smiling because it isn't very cold here and we have about an inch of snow. This was a very funny post.

Snow plowing in Kelowna goes like this. You wake up in the morning and your car is surrounded by a wall of snow. They don't care if you move or not.

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

Thank goodness for your wonderful sense of humor. Stay safe and warm, Pearl. Hot chocolate, I say! And thanks for the info on the retail scene. [Duh, I should've known the badges only come in Amanda's.]
xoRobyn

R. Jacob said...

Being from Chicago, I have more than a passing knowledge about the shoveling wars in front of the house. two spot minimum, chairs left out to mark your spot, fist fights making the newspaper, occasional death, giant hump in the street daring you to try to cross over to get to the parking spot, end result a long rambling sentence seemingly without end, for example...

Sharon A. said...

I love your way with words! I think I'd choose the Cockney accent, please

Gigi said...

Hate to tell you, Pearl - but your Southern friends aren't lying; it was positively balmy here today. Of course, Mother Nature is just toying with us - we are just in denial.

Daisy said...

God, I HATE those *%^#$ automated messages. But at least now I can have a little chuckle - remembering Pearl!

alwaysinthebackrow said...

Husband's elderly aunt lived in So. Mpls. She would be out digging her car out of the snow....and would leave a chair or something to reserve the spot. Most neighbors respected that. Many helped her out. How did a snowy city plan blocks of homes with no alleys or spots to park? Oh, right....back then everyone rode the streetcars. Too bad they tore them out as part of "progress".
You know all of the snow will melt in a few days...no need to shovel it!! :)

mrwriteon said...

What can I say. Our crocuses are in bloom. Please don't hate me.

Pixel Peeper said...

I used to live in Buffalo. You can't scare me.

Floridian friend to former Buffalonian: "Oh my gosh, where do you even start to get your car cleaned off?"

Former Buffalonian to Floridian: "You start at the license plate."

Bodacious Boomer said...

Sometimes living in Houston looks good. In another 3 months though- not so much of course.

HermanTurnip said...

"uh--and also, Dude, "Little Person" is not the preferred, uh. . . "Adorably Tiny". Please."

The Elephant's Child said...

May I be excused? My brain hurts.

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

Oh, God, Pearl! You've exceeded yourself! I can't stop
laughing. I hate those automated phone systems! And
Byzantine parking regulations winter or summer! Great
post!

the walking man said...

I guess you're saying you got a little snow the pas few days eh? One (probably the only one) of the beautiful things about living in Detroit is we are so fearsome even the worst weather passes us by. It knows most of us will at the very least waste some bird shot on it trying to kill it.

Now I am not saying we are the brightest people in the world here but having that violent reputation has to count for something and it's the weather is afraid of us too.

Kenna B said...

Loved your post! That's what I used the change jar for when I lived in Philly. Now in the Brainerd Lakes Area, I deal with the 2 ft hump at the end of the driveway from all the neighbor's blowing their snow into the street and the plow depositing it in a nice wall where I shoveled.

Linda O'Connell said...

1982, a Minneapolis-sized snow, two feet over ice pack. It was the worst fo times, people killed each other over parking spaces. It was the best of times, because everybody helped everybody that week, St. Louis wasone big happy emergency family.

IndigoWrath said...

*sigh* I wish I could have a snow emergency.

vanilla said...

Obviously, then, you do not use public transportation solely to garner blog fodder.

Raymond Alexander Kukkee said...

When you hear the "press 1" whistle loudly into the phone with a dog whistle.
Now it won't work. Park in your garage until spring instead. Beep....

Amy said...

In my comparibly smaller snowy city, one moves their car off the side of the road not because "The Man" tells us to, but because we fear that the man driving the snow plow has had a few too many Old Milwaukees in him.

Rita said...

OMG!! That is hysterically funny...in a sad-but-true way. ;)

Susan in the Boonies said...

So....

having any weather lately?