tl;dr: Parking hassles are one of the biggest reasons people avoid downtown. If you’re insisting on a minimum time or payment, perhaps your parking meters should be programmed to enforce that limit. It’s not my problem they sold me a half-hour when you have signs up stating a “one-hour minimum.”
After Jessica’s post yesterday on Cheffini’s, I figured I’d give it a shot. I’m usually out for a ride on my bike when I’m passing through downtown, but this time I drove over from the office and parked in the lot opposite Container Park. I fed the meter and was about to head across the street when the rent-a-cop chased me down and started haranguing me about only paying for a half-hour when there’s some sign posted (which I hadn’t previously noticed) stating a one-hour minimum. A half-hour would’ve been sufficient to grab some food, eat it, and leave, and it was what the meter offered when I first punched in the space number, so I accepted it and paid up. Barney Fife, however, was under the impression that I should’ve known to bump it up another half-hour. I told him it wasn’t my problem that his parking meters were misprogrammed: if they don’t want people paying for just a half-hour, they need to fix the software in their meters to disallow it. The issue ended up getting escalated twice, with a security supervisor getting involved. Some 10-15 minutes later, the supervisor finally conceded my point and let me on my way. Was it really smart of the El Cortez to get four rent-a-cops involved over a measly dollar? Fix your damn meters!
After all that, I headed over to Cheffini’s and found something on the menu board that sounded interesting. A line had formed, so I got in it. Knowing I didn’t have as much time as I would’ve liked, I would’ve had them make it a to-go order, but the line was moving at a glacial pace. After maybe 10 minutes waiting, I had to leave. I’m willing to assign the blame here not to the cashier, but to the idiot at the head of the line who couldn’t make up his mind as to what he wanted. Hipster douchebag must’ve taken up at least five minutes of everybody’s time. Some of us don’t have all day. I wasn’t about to feed the meter after what had already happened, so I ended up leaving empty-handed and went back to the office. I still had a couple of Ball Parks in the fridge next to my desk…maybe not as interesting, but they get the job done. Maybe I’ll try again sometime…when I’m passing through on my bike.