The Parking Chair Wars heat up

I talked a bit about the Pittsburgh Parking chair over at the Pittsburgh Magazine blog, but let’s dig a little deeper here.

There are a few ways people look at the Pittsburgh Parking Chair:

1.  It’s acceptable in the winter when you’ve spent 3 hours digging your space out, but it’s kind of rude in the warmer months when you’ve done nothing to earn that space.

2.  It’s acceptable.  Always.  Respect the chair.  Always.  Or face street justice. [awkward kung fu moves]

3.  It’s never acceptable.  Ever.  It’s rude and illegal and I don’t care if you dug the space out for two hours.  If you leave, I can claim that space, even if it means I have to move your stupid chair.

Now, here at That’s Church we can agree to disagree, so I hope you agree to disagree with me if you’re a two or a three, because this girl right here?  I’m a one.  I understand it in the winter, but not so much in the summer.  In the winter, I kind of equate it to, let’s say you’re at the arts festival and you’ve secured your gyros and your spinach pies and your other artery-clogging foods, and you head over to find a table.  The only table you can find that is not being used is covered in trash and maybe some pigeon poop.  You take some time to pick everything up and wipe the table down, after which you head to the trash can to throw the crap away.  However, when you return, that table you just cleaned off is now occupied by a group of people and the food you left there to save your table has been moved and placed on the floor.  It might make you feel a little [awkward kung fu moves] don’t you think?

This week, it appears that a number three moved a parking space saver and left a note for a number one or a number two.

Here’s the note that the number three left:

Here’s her back windshield, likely street justice doled out by Mr. Super Pissed Off Number One or Two:

Here’s my opinion on this.

The windshield never should have been broken.  That was a bit TOO MUCH street justice.  If he feels that strongly about it, next time Mr. Number One or Two should just bury the car and force Miss Number Three to dig it out herself so she can see how much work went into it.

However, Miss Number Three might want to meet the kettle because her beef is that shoveled-out space-saving is RUDE, underlined RUDE, and therefore, she calls out this perceived rudeness via a rude, and let’s just call a bitchy spade a bitchy spade, bitchy note.

The moral of this post is this:  Don’t smash a windshield unless you’re rescuing a trapped baby or unless your golfer husband slept with a baker’s dozen of gross ho-bags.  Don’t leave rude notes when you decide, ill-advisedly, to move a parking chair. And finally, all pigeons must die. [expert lightsaber moves].

The end.


  1. Scott
    February 23, 2010 6:37 pm


    Nail in the tire? I’ll be waiting for you, just like the window basher. Classless.

  2. Bojack
    February 23, 2010 6:45 pm


    Will be waiting for you to test my new shithead-parker markers!

  3. peirogi kid
    February 23, 2010 7:02 pm

    I grew up on the 1800 block of Sidney Street and parking chairs have been RESPECTED since the 1950’s. It’s all you pansy ass yuppies that are making this non issue an issue.
    Living on Sidney Street is now a whole different ballgame. Now you get drunks pissing on your stoop (go ahead and google stoop you yuppie asshat) and puking on your sidewalk.
    We would sit out on our stoops in the summer and have a few Irons and, get this, talk to each other. Yes, real live neighbors, sitting on the stoop having actual conversations till the wee hours.
    But alas no more, the city has changed.
    Fair thee well my beloved city, fair the well.

  4. Bojack
    February 23, 2010 7:02 pm


    My advice to you:
    Go somewhere with valet parking, or that has their own lot,
    or stay the f’k home before you even THINK of stealing someone’s personal, residential parking space!

  5. peirogi kid
    February 23, 2010 7:06 pm

    Scott from post 51.

    You are clueless.

  6. Ekatkos
    February 23, 2010 7:32 pm

    I’m a #1. The reason I don’t use a chair otherwise, is because I’m lucky that there’s not a need to on my street. You can usually squeeze in somewhere. If you lived in a neighborhood where parking was always a battle, I could see how you could become an All Weather Chair Believer.

    We’re a city that defines itself and takes pride in its traditions. The Chair is as much a part of Da ‘Burgh as the Terrible Towel. If you wouldn’t wipe your bum with a Terrible Towel, then it should also go against your Inner-Burgher to mess with someone’s chair (with emergencies as accepted break it etiquette).

    With that said, proper street justice is covering the offending car with snow, or revenge along those lines. Window breaking is just craziness. I have no love for the note writer, her note was rude, and akin to waving a red flag in front of a bull. If you’re going to swipe a spot, at the very least spare them the lecture. I suspect she’s relatively new to the area, because otherwise she would have known that leaving a note like that was just asking for trouble.

  7. Virginia Hendricks
    February 23, 2010 7:42 pm

    There was some serious nastiness about the parking chair over on the Pittsburgh community of livejournal. One person stated they saw a police officer throwing chairs in a dumpster and now they feel justified doing it. Another person says they are collecting chairs and saving them for a yard sale or flea market. And EVERYONE keeps pulling out the abandoned property law.

    Personally, i think the city should have kept their mouth shut and let people put their chairs out. They deserve it.

  8. VAgirl
    February 23, 2010 7:48 pm

    I consider myself a 1 1/2. I don’t live in the city but in one of the neighburg’s. I pay taxes and support my little community and I expect to have at the very least one spot in front of my house available for my vehicle. We actually have 3 cars and park the 3rd one in front of the apartment building that has parking in the rear that none of the residents use. As for the chair it is still in use. The home owners on the street dug out each others cars/parking spaces but the renters, nada. There is still mounds of snow.

  9. Donncha
    February 23, 2010 8:12 pm

    My thinking? Dumbass note to leave behind. Just park and let it be. Dumber-ass stunt to smash a windshield. That’s a $500 job right there. I’d buy a junker, pre-smash the windshields, and drop it in that space till the cows come home.

  10. Summer
    February 23, 2010 8:24 pm

    Don’t live in the city, but I have a snowmaggedon/parking story y’all might enjoy.

    I live in a housing development in the suburbs. There’s a public park across the street with a adjacent lot. It is very popular with dog walkers. Naturally, the plow drivers had lots more important things to do than plow the park’s lot.

    My husband spent an entire day digging out spots for our two cars. The next day, I came home from work and found a strange car in my DRIVEWAY.

    It was a dog walker. I was like, are you kidding me? Seriously, you’ll park in someone’s damn driveway?

  11. mindymin
    February 23, 2010 8:27 pm

    Im between 1 & 2. I live on a street in Carnegie with very few neighbors so generally there are no issues, but I still get mad as hell when someone, usually a “guest” parker, parks in front of my house when there are perfectly good other places to park that ARENT in front of my house. We didnt pull out the chairs for this storm because there really seemed no need…right up until the folks that live in the alley behind us decided to just park in the alley & not dig anything out. This led their friends to think it was perfectly ok to park their cars in one of the 3 spots we dug out for our 3 cars amongst the immense piles of plowed snow. I was very lucky & got to meet & chat with both attempted spot hijackers, who after some not so pleasant pleasantries were exchanged both moved their cars. Neither really gave me too much flack when i expressed my displeasure with their poor decision making…

    Granted no matter how mad I was I dont think Id ever REALLY smash someones window or do any long term damage to the car. But I would totally hose that car down and freeze it shut. It’ll melt…eventually.

  12. Sexy Jesus
    February 23, 2010 8:34 pm

    I’m a #3 and will move your precious chair to another street, heck, another neighborhood if feasible. I also have friends who like to do #1 (not to be confused with #1 above) on parking chairs. Enjoy that new toilet on your porch!

  13. Bojack
    February 23, 2010 9:10 pm


    Wowee!! Care to share your make, model, year, license #, and usual parking areas please?

  14. Scott
    February 23, 2010 9:33 pm


    Wow…that relatively benign comment must have really riled you up. Two patented sophomoric comments in reply! I’m honored!

  15. redram1
    February 23, 2010 9:35 pm

    Go to
    They are on sale for 13.99

  16. redram1
    February 23, 2010 9:48 pm

    @52 bojack
    This is why I carry a gun…fuck with my car and they will never find the body!

  17. cmcmcl
    February 23, 2010 9:54 pm

    the latest news from KDKA online –
    Feb 23, 2010 9:34 pm US/Eastern
    Shots Fired Over Parking Space In Schenley Heights

    An argument over a parking space led to a man being tased by a Pittsburgh police officer.

    It all started in the 3100-block of Ewart Drive in the Schenley Heights neighborhood of the Hill District.

    KDKA-TV’s Ralph Iannotti reports two people were having a dispute when an officer arrived at the scene. One of the people fighting fired a shot.

    The officer fired back. No one was injured.

    Police tased the man who fired.

  18. tw
    February 23, 2010 10:10 pm

    Don’t know if this happened in Pittsburgh, but the local government here in Reading, Pa got so fed up with the parking chairs that they are now confiscating anything left behind to save spots…including furniture. And they won’t tell you where they took it…consider it a donation I guess.

  19. John Galt
    February 23, 2010 10:46 pm

    I’m a #1 – with the caveat that the only valid claim to a parking spot (saved with a chair) is one in which the claimant expended a considerable amount of effort into clearing. I don’t hold valid any claim to a parking spot in non-snowy weather – it’s just psycho to lay claim to a parking spot on a clear public street and, in my logic, renders any such claimant subject to double-reverse-street-justice [awkward kung-fu moves] in response to any act taken by claimant on the parkee.

  20. Bojack
    February 24, 2010 12:31 am


    So do I!

  21. Greg
    February 24, 2010 5:26 am

    It’s really simple… just don’t be rude. If there is 2 feet of snow and I shovel a spot, I didn’t do it for you.

    I have a driveway, but neighbors guests are always parking next to my house… fine… but my yard is not for your garbage. I constantly pick up pop bottles and fast food bags that I didn’t throw there.

  22. peirogi kid
    February 24, 2010 6:59 am

    Since many places in The Burgh have reverted back to the “shoot em up” ways of the wild west one needs to be careful when disputing parking spots.

  23. Mayor Luke Doggy Dogg
    February 24, 2010 7:49 am

    Hey Ya’ll,

    This is a public service announcement from tha Lukey.

    If yo ass din’t shovel that spot out, then don’t park yo ride there unless you fittin ta gettin an ass whoopin. Fewls is gettin’ violent up in Lukeyburgh over deez spots.

    In tha words of Johnny Cochran, “If you wanna take a risk fo’ a parkin’ spot, watch…cause yo ass might just get shot.”

  24. jf
    February 24, 2010 7:51 am

    Wear Pittsburgh has a parking chair shirt:

    They should let Ginny give one away!

  25. Kathy
    February 24, 2010 9:39 am

    Like comment #72 points out, I understand the parking chair issues (and am a #1, by the way), but even I was shocked to read the P-G headline to see that a guy shot at — yes, that is FIRED A GUN — at police!!! — over a parking space issue last night in Pittsburgh. He is now being charged with two counts of attempted homicide, among other things. Get a grip folks.

  26. Julie
    February 24, 2010 9:52 am

    I wonder how many of the commenters actually live in areas where street parking is truly dog eat dog? There are not enough spaces for the amount of cars and you will park wherever you can. You will get your share of tickets. Sometimes, even in summer, you will park blocks from your residence and drag your groceries or laptop or suitcase to your apartment or house. I frequently have to park in both Southside and Shadyside, and I am sorry, but I am probably going to take your shoveled spot (as a last resort). As for vandalizing someone’s car that parked in ‘your spot’ – how do you know the circumstances? That person may have very well dug themself out of another spot somewhere – when that spot is taken, they must move on. I can see being a #1 in very limited circumstances but would likely lean to a #3.

    Then again, I am not sure I have ever taken the time to actually move a parking chair. I give them the benefit of the doubt, thinking they left it there in a real emergency. Sigh. I wish everyone would just stop this crap!

  27. Betoon
    February 24, 2010 11:02 am

    Okay my parents live in Turtle Creek where snow removal is even more random than in the city. They are both in their 80’s and shoveled out their spot in front so they could limp(one limps on the left, the other on the right)back and forth to their car. If someone had taken their shoveled out spot or removed their chairs – I think I would have been really really angry. The good thing is, their neighbors have been watching out for them and defended their spot. Ninja moves and all!!!

  28. Tinare
    February 24, 2010 11:57 am

    I never understood parking chairs, but since this storm, I am solidly a number 1.

    I, and a group of my neighbors, actually shoveled out our street the day of the storm so that everyone — including those who did not shovel out the street — could get on and off it. (I live on a street that NEVER sees a plow.) I shoveled that day from approx. 11:30 until I could no longer lift the shovel at 4:30. I’m a woman in my mid-40s. At one point I looked around at my fellow shovelers (there were about 20 of us shoveling on and off that day), the majority were women and, aside from two guys in their late 20s/early 30s, the men who were there shoveling were all over 50. There are duplexes that are rentals a bit further down my street. I see lots of young guys park near my house and walk down the road. They were all NOWHERE TO BE SEEN the day of shoveling. They’ve since taken the majority of the spots on the street shoveled out by the rest of us.

    I don’t condone the destruction of anyone’s property or violence. But I can understand the anger of having worked really hard and having some lazy-ass take your spot.

  29. Vivian formerly NYLuvsPitts
    February 24, 2010 12:18 pm

    Wow. It’s been a moment since I visited. What’s going on in Da Burgh????

  30. Little Miss Misha
    February 24, 2010 12:32 pm

    I actually used a “parking chair” for the first time ever through this storm, but it wasn’t to save my spot. It was to keep the neighbor’s idiot son from blocking my stairs in with his Hummer (that he wouldn’t park in a spot that I shoveled out that still had two inches of snow in). I got tired of trying to climb over it so that I wouldn’t have to roll down the snow-covered hill in my front yard just to get in my front door, so voila! Parking chair becomes Quit blocking my damn stairs chair.

    I figured that was a LOT nicer than leaving an note full of obscenities or banging on his mother’s door and screaming in his face.

  31. J
    February 24, 2010 12:36 pm

    I’m a #1 bordering on #2– have you ever tried carrying a couch down two blocks and then up three stories in a non-elevator apartment building because some self-righteous ass decided that your spot reserved for a moving van was less important than parking in front of their restaurant for dinner? I don’t recommend it.

    And sure, I could bury the car that took my space because they’re too cheap to park in the pay lots here in Squirrel Hill while they’re here for a few hours– but where am I going to park in the meantime when half of my street is still piled up with feet of melting snow? And why is it back on ME to spend hours of labor and/ or pay to park when I’m the resident without a driveway and they’re the visitor?

  32. toni
    February 24, 2010 1:25 pm

    Nah Scott you won’t be waiting for me…if you had read my whole statement you would have noticed I wrote that I DONT DRIVE!!!!! Hence no car, hence no chair outside my house, or parking space problems.

    So Scott the nails in your tires would be at my neighbors behest…and I’ll be waiting with my cell phone in hand for your little chair bashing heart to show up.

  33. RJQ
    February 24, 2010 1:27 pm

    So, all of you who posted about not respecting the CHAIR: specifically, what is your reasoning other than ‘the law says so’ and ‘you don’t own the street’ because I don’t buy it.

    My husband dug out a spot for our vehicle, in case of my own personal emergency since I’m PREGNANT, then went to work. (He protects and serves YOU, if you know what I mean.) If you decide not to respect that chair, then heaven help you. Do NOT mess with this pregnant woman who has a firearms permit with hollow points in the clip. I don’t know where you’re from or who you think you are but I’ll tell you what, I wouldn’t hesitate to let a few rounds pierce the air. You, I’m sure, would wet yourself then scamper away with the proverbial tail between the legs. Yeah, I called you a dog and I am a hillbilly who rides a horse and believes in corporal punishment. What?


  34. Scott
    February 24, 2010 3:43 pm

    Toni, put the kettle on, take a deep breath and turn on Dr. Phil.

    Congrats on not driving. You and my dearly departed Grandmother who was born in the 1910s are birds of a feather. And here I thought she was the only one! Silly me!

  35. bp
    February 24, 2010 7:44 pm

    #1 here.

    Respect the Chair !

    (under Snow Emergency situations)

  36. Still A Fan
    February 24, 2010 8:49 pm

    Still A Fan should never be the voice of reason but nails in a tire could easily kill somebody if the tire goes at the right time. That being said, rarely does a single punch kill somebody.

  37. Erica
    February 25, 2010 1:01 pm

    G-ma, thumbs up!

  38. beaner
    February 25, 2010 2:10 pm

    Some people in Squirrel Hill are using trash cans to hold their spaces. How gauche.

  39. toni
    February 25, 2010 3:46 pm

    Your prejudice and ignorance shows Scott… my lack of driving is not due to not knowing how to or wanting to…I, in fact, hold a legal PA driver’s license.

    My lack of driving is due to back and leg problems.

    Too bad Grandma is dearly departed…she could have used the tea kettle on your anatomy to teach you respect of the parking chair….

  40. Rachel
    March 1, 2010 1:40 pm

    I’m a number one, all the way.

    You earn the winter spot by the sweat and effort and time put into getting yourself out of it.

    In the summer, however, you should hunt and park like everybody else.

    That being said, I will never move a parking chair, because anytime somebody stakes a claim at something it means they are passionate about it, and in this instance passion can translate to flattened tires, a broken windshield or a keyed car. I’ll walk, thanks.

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  42. Mark
    May 30, 2010 4:39 pm

    I tell you what If I ever caught someone doing that to my car I would beat the HELL out of them… Thats TOTAL BULLSHIT…

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