Parking Problems, 1948

Over the years I’ve amassed a nice collection of campus parking memos and other automobile-related altercations from a half-dozen universities. They are among the most unintentionally comic of all university communications (despite lots of competition in this genre) and I began collecting them in earnest them after I came across a set of instructions from an administrator at Tulane that dealt with how to park so as to avoid inconveniencing the neighborhood peacocks (and their wealthy owners).

These two pieces turned up in the Dean of Students collection. The first thought I had was to wonder how this poor fellow wound up with responsibility for parking. My second thought was astonishment at his quixotic appeal to the reasonableness of faculty members about what is after all the highly fraught topic of where you get to put your car:

And this little postcard, sent to campus scofflaws, just made me laugh. It’s the contrast, I suppose, between the high seriousness and elevated language of the threat and the utterly mundane matter at hand:



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4 Responses to Parking Problems, 1948

  1. Bob Swanson says:

    Some time c.1981 I was parked in Lovett Lot in an RA’s spot. He parked behind me to block me in. So I did the only sensible thing. I drove over the flowers in front of me to exit.

    I was sober.

    • marmer01 says:

      In 1983 or 1984 I had a Hanszen lot sticker and got back from a gig to find there was some big party going on and the only space left was kinda small because two cars had parked over the line on both sides of it. I was driving a Suburban in those days and was rather proud of my ability to maneuver the beast. So I backed into the space with about two inches to spare, put the electric rear window in the tailgate down, and climbed out the back. Eventually somebody had to get in on the passenger side and slide over, though, for one of those cars.

  2. Bill Peebles, Hanszen '70 says:

    On a dark and stormy Saturday I was late for an early morning class so I grabbed the first parking space I saw. Yikes, it was the president’s space. I got a ticket but thank goodness I wasn’t towed. I don’t remember how much the fine was, but it put a dent in my finances.

  3. I never owned or drove a car when I was at Rice. I commuted by bicycle. Now I could tell you some tales about bike parking at Rice in the late 70’s . . .

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