PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — We’ve all experienced it — rudeness and rage in the parking lot as customers search to find a place to park.
“I’ve been going around for 20 minutes now,” says Pam Cawley of the West End, who works at a shopping mall. “You see people getting into shouting matches close to Christmas. People pulling up and yelling about their parking spots, [saying] that’s my spot.”
Patience often seems in short supply.
“That man’s getting angry,” one parker noted, as the man behind her honked. “Better get moving.”
Shoppers are very familiar with the experience.
“Oh, yeah, absolutely. You see them waiting, just circling, like sharks, just waiting,” notes Mike Archer of Moon.
And sometimes it can get violent.
“I have seen people fight over spots. I have seen people both try to go enter a spot, screaming at each other,” says Dayna Scott of Brookline.
Psychologist Anthony Napoleon says parking lot rage is both real and growing.
“We’ve raised two generations of human beings to feel entitled to have it their way whenever they want it,” Napoleon told KDKA’s Jon Delano. “We have replaced politeness with self-indulgence. We have replaced courtesy with assertion of self.”
And it’s hard to miss at this time of year.
What makes some really angry at parking lots are the rude and inconsiderate people who don’t know how to park their cars.
But the key is controlling that anger.
Appearing on the Sunday Business Page, Episcopal Bishop Dorsey McConnell says it helps to imagine the stress the offending person is under, too.
“And then when I start looking at others, then I maybe see them not as the guy who is in my way, or who just took the parking place I wanted, but rather someone who’s got their own struggles, their own stresses, and their own tough realities,” said the Bishop.
That helps — and so does realizing it’s only a parking spot.
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