The great parking debate; back-in or pull-in?

stocksnap_8u9imyl2cqAs another blogger puts it, an issue that has “two bitterly feuding camps” and further compares it to the “…great ‘under’ or ‘over’ toilet paper debate.” I have a feeling that the blogger is Australian so here’s a Canadian (specifically Calgary), pro / con list for back-in:

Pros:

Safety – Apparently it’s safer. So you see a lot of SUVs and trucks doing this. Because, face it, SUVs and trucks have less visibility.

You can pull out faster – Great if you’re robbing the place! Personally I like to get in the store quicker to get in front of that person who doesn’t have kids and is going to dicker in front of us while in the checkout line while my kids try to tear the place apart… (you know who you are!)

Cons:

Groceries – How do you get into your trunk with another vehicle crammed against the trunk lid?

Parking – In Calgary the parking authority can’t see your license plate to confirm if you’re legally parked (in the fancy new online parking system) – so you could get fined and even towed.

Police – In Alberta your license plate is only on the back. If you’re backed in, it looks like you’re hiding something. The police have to get out of their car when patrolling to see your license plate further upsetting them.

Winter – You can’t plug in your block heater: it is in the front of the vehicle where the engine is and the plug-in for the stall is in the front. Which reminds me – when Imperial Oil started managing the Syncrude plant they decreed “all shall back in” and one cheeky Canadian said “that will work until winter…”. Suffice it to say, the Syncrude plant actually froze up for the first time in its history and couldn’t produce for over a week proving again that warm weather people have no idea about cold weather.

Safety – People who are backing in don’t signal what they are doing for some reason? So it appears that they stop randomly and start backing up. In my car, I’ve several times nearly taken their parking space or pulled through to the parking stall they are backing into.

Stall wastage – A large enough percentage of people who back in can’t do it straight. So they usually block off the adjacent stall from being used. This also happens with people pulling-in, however back-in seems to increase the angle beyond what is just “sloppy parking”.

There you have it! In Calgary, clearly the lesser used method is back-in and a high percentage of that is trucks. I am personally a pull-in person as there are too many cons with back-in in Calgary. I have a feeling that back-in occurs much more frequently in warmer climates. Pull-in just seems the more logical way to do it here.

PS. I prefer the toilet paper in the over position. My reasoning is a result of the newer holders that flip up. Imagine banging away in the upward direction on these holders and the paper role flies off…

Planet Money Talks About Organ Donations And How To Increase Them

Empathy is not an effective way to encourage people to be on an organ registry. But simply asking them when they are not thinking about it (via DMV registry) is extremely effective. It works because we are annoyed and distracted and not thinking about death. Interestingly, Alberta recently made this change, to ask the question at the registry, just this year.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2014/02/19/279664019/episode-518-how-to-bore-someone-into-donating-an-organ

The Anti-Store

Finally! The NPR Planet Money episode on Price Club / Costco. Why they purposely make shopping harder and why people love it. The quotes in this podcast are priceless; from the founder himself “I was adamant that we would not have signs telling people where things were because that would make it likely that they would wander through all the aisles and find other things to buy.”

http://www.npr.org/sections/money/2015/09/25/443519599/episode-653-the-anti-store

Here’s something I don’t understand about people shopping at Costco. Clearly Costco is not a “quick stop” experience. There are no express cashiers! So why do people still insist on going to Costco to buy a single item???

Image of Costco patron buying only two items (that’s my stuff on the left) on Oct 30, 2015 – bananas and bread?:

CostcoShopJustTwoItems

The Fastest Growing, Least Popular Airline In America

NPR Planet Money explores our preferences, specifically the difference between what people say and what people do. Economists call this “stated preferences” (What they say they want) vs “revealed preferences” (what people actually choose). Bargain basement airlines are a perfect example as heard in this podcast.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2014/02/14/276973956/episode-517-the-fastest-growing-least-popular-airline-in-america

The End of Emergency Broadcasts – Now a Pull, Not a Push

One would think an emergency broadcast makes sense for everyone. What I noticed today was that my shortwave weather radio has a weekly test so you know you’re getting broadcasts. Then I noticed that I receive emergency alerts via twitter & email; neither of which have test messages. Presumably because we are all so afraid of “spam”?  Never mind that in the modern age, you can use filters to put the test messages in a folder you don’t see unless you want to confirm your getting emergency messages.

I think I’m on to something profound here but not exactly sure what it is… Hopefully twitter and email work in the Zombie Apocalypse.

The Best Definition of an Entrepreneur

Entrepreneurs are often talked about but frequently misunderstood. Yet it’s important to understand it because everybody can and should be an entrepreneur. As mentioned in the article, “Entrepreneurship becomes a mindset rather than the caricature we’re used to, of the driven, risk-addicted, type-A serial business-starter.” Explore what is meant by entrepreneurship defined as “…the pursuit of opportunity beyond resources controlled” by reading the article. Because “…[w]hen you make [this] …brand of entrepreneurship part of the organizational culture, you ensure that people are empowered to take creative initiative when they spot an opportunity. It makes employees’ working days more exhilarating and rewarding, keeps them engaged, and makes your company stronger.”

http://www.khorus.com/blog/the-best-definition-of-entrepreneurship-ive-heard-so-far