DANGER! Israelis parking here!

3 05 2011

here are many rumors, stereotypes and prejudices about Israeli drivers. I’m here to tell you they are all true. Today we shall explore the Israeli method of parking. Its an art, not an exact science, meaning those painted white lines evenly spaced in the parking lots here are considered by the driving public to be, well, “suggestions.” Creative parking is what I’ll generously call it, an art form so lacking in nuance but some how still transcendent (as in transcending any logic) that words cannot adequately describe the phenomenon. For that, visual evidence is required.

Last week we went shopping at a mall in Nazareth Ilit. Parking spaces were hard to find. The lot didn’t look full, but there weren’t any spaces available. What sort of violation of the laws of physics and nature was going on here? Doing some (very) elementary detective work, I took a bunch of photos, which I present to you for your personal examination:

Exhibit #1: Note the ever slight deviation across the line. They call it here "creating facts on the ground."

Exhibit #2: The one on the left is a driving instructor!

Exhibit #3: Note the astute angle, the subtle statement, the invitation to keying the paint job...

Exhibit #4: No comment.

Exhibit #5: Look at THIS jerk! No consideration whatsoever. What kind of arrogant, self-centered person would park like this? What a nut job.

Okay, so this last photo needs some s’plaining. Yes, that’s, ah, my car, and yes, I did, er, come over the line a little bit and boy! was I surprised when I got back from the store. There is only one possible rational explanation (or better to call it an “explanatory rationalization”?) and here it is:

While I was inside shopping, the ground under my car shifted to the left.

The end.




9 responses

27 01 2012
Driving in Israel Part 3: Parking in Israel « Snowtracks in the Desert

[…] have to hand it to Israelis. They might not be able to park a car between the lines in a lot, but they sure can squeeze into a space. They have driving-in-reverse skills that would […]

5 05 2011

Thanks Yitz. Having just had the displeasure of three weeks of driving in Israel, I can relate although, sadly, I found bad parking to be one of the lesser sins. At least once a day, we literally thought we were going to die. I LOVE Israel but Israelis are th worst drivers on earth. Period.

4 05 2011
Jerilyn Gelt

Unfortunately, I can inform John of the exact amount of a parking ticket near Steuart St ($65)at the meters which list the hours in teeny tiny letters which are oh-so-hard to read at dusk (when most meetings take place). San Francisco’s revenue source would only be enhanced by Israeli parking customs! Beware of assimilation, Yitz! Warmly, Jerilyn

4 05 2011
Steve Berley

Looks like any day at the 5th and Mission garage in SF. About the leftward shift on that last picture – I’m sure Obama is to blame.

4 05 2011
Gabie Berliner

I don’t think it’s any different than here. I had a friend who lived on the Coast who, when she had a new car (which she often had due to the salty mist), would park straddling the line so no one could ding her car. At least she’d park at the farthest part of the lot. No the way Israelis drive is another matter!

3 05 2011
Nancy Beth Cohen

Hi Yizhak:

This was an absolutely hilarious, yet brilliant observation and write up. I lived in Israel for many years and it was wonderful to see the photos and read your accompanying comments! Almost from the ridiculous to the sublime! Can’t wait to read more! Dash, Nancy

3 05 2011
Steve Lipman

Lemme get this straight…a guy from BOSTON us complaining about the way people drive/park???? Now I have seen everything! I am going to report you to the UN HRC. Maybe they will refer this to the Security Council for further action/investigation. 😀

3 05 2011
John Cushman

Hey Yitz
Be honest, it’s not worse that trying to find a parking place anywhere near Steuart Street as I did yesterday. It was the first time I’d been to your former hangout in months, and we met with Rabbi David Rosen, William Swing and others you’d know. (I liked Rosen, but he has a few things to learn about religion in California.) I figured parking at somewhere north of $2 per hour, unless you get nailed with a parking ticket that jumps it much higher. Fortunately, I don’t know the amount.
Hope you can get to Sepphoris, and get some fresh pix of the mosaic at the Synagogue.
Stay thirsty, my friend.

10 05 2011
Yitzhak Santis יצחק סנטיס

Hi John
Try this for size: I parked once near 121 Steuart, got a parking ticket and was towed. The cost? $396 for the towing and another $85 for the fine! As for Tzipori (Sepphoris) I can see it from my house, literally! Subject of a future blog. Stay tuned.

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