Parking Pranks

October 30th, 2014

Today, a trip in the WABAC machine:
A few years ago, I eagerly offered my services to a rather inauspicious but important project, important I still say though perhaps for someone with more stamina than I. I offered to lead the CUF Community Council’s effort to tackle the dreaded ‘parking problem’.

****ooooohhhh*****scary halloween noises….******oooooohhhhhh******

Lots of meetings and a couple years later, I’d met a lot of important people and ‘important people’ too, learned how the City works, and found out I had better ways to spend my time. I still actually hang out with those thicker skinned people still working at the issue though, and an exchange today last week prompted me to dig back into my parking archives and properly pass the torch.

All of this is a long wind-up to say that I rediscovered a series of photos I took that a certain tiny subset of central Cincinnati may find either extremely amusing or entirely aggravating. I intend to spoil any possible amusement by explaining the context of each photo in it’s caption.

CUF Free Parking Sign

There are dozens of things that the CUFNA board hated, but two of them were: 1. People who aren’t on the CUFNA board parking in the neighborhood and 2. Signs on telephone poles.


cant afford parking

A common complaint: “What about the poor? They might not be able to afford [trivial amount] per year.” Though of course the ‘poor’ must have cars if they are to have this concern raised rather presumptuously on their behalf, inevitably by the rich.

Tow the outsiders!

Most people like it when outsiders come to the neighborhood–look at OTR–but not these folks.


please give quarters

Please give QUARTERS.


the party hydrant

This photo is a collage of all of the things that the then CUFNA board (and the meetings’ regular curmudgeons) hated. I had to move that broken bottle to get it into the shot, but not very far ;-)


I’d have so much fun if my prop budget allowed more than cardboard, markers and string…

Also, my thanks to Tyler Catlin for modelling and for bringing some fun and prankishness into the whole discussion. I’ll never forget the night when I first presented our work to the CUF Neighborhood Association general meeting and things quickly devolved into a shouting match among the audience. At one point someone yelled “who gave you the right to speak!?”, I think to the board president, at which point Tyler replied for all to hear in a way that left the old windbag slightly flabbergasted and which of course only escalated the conflict.

It was difficult for professionalism to restrain my smile in that moment.

If anyone is interested in seeing where the process is now, Jack Martin and I are still going back and forth on parking issues between ourselves and various others at the City and in the neighborhoods. The latest thing I have is an outline of the current proposal which I’ve uploaded. I’ll let it speak for itself.

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