It’s Mine

It’s hard to admit when you are wrong. BUT, it’s especially hard to suck it up when you ARE NOT, but then realize you kind of were.

So, it all began with a simple trip with my girls to Lenox for a little Christmas shopping.

The trip was smooth even though the Peach Pass Lane was CLOSED (which makes me want to commit a felony). When is it OPEN? A little heads up on where to find that info would be much appreciated.

Anywhoo, we arrived safely and were looking for a parking spot.

I usually default to the parking garage because that’s guaranteed success, however, this particular afternoon I must have felt like a winner because I was drawn like a magnet to the open parking directly in front of Lenox. This is premium parking (just below valet). I’m not that desperate yet, good Lord I’ve still got some fight in me…but not much.

So, I make that last second decision to dart into the needy yet primal arena that begets watching and waiting. You watch for glowing reverse lights and, once found, you screech your way over to the spot dodging shoppers and bags just to get there before all the other sharks smell blood.

The alternative is to stalk a shopper as they seek out their car. This move is risky, however, as they may have no intention of leaving just yet.

These people really have all the power too. I always feel like they are screwing with me. Once they notice they are being followed, they seem to walk a little slower. Sometimes, they walk all the way down the row of cars while you sheepishly follow them being sure not to get too close yet close enough to let the other hunters know this prey’s yours and then instead of stopping at a car they cross over into another aisle altogether leaving you sitting there like an idiot waiting on absolutely nothing.

None of that happened, however, and I found someone backing out right away and was the first to arrive ready to swallow up the spot. I put my blinker on signaling to all those around; mine. Just move along sweetie. This one’s mine…better luck next time. Ya snooze, ya lose. Ha!

Not even an entire second into this blissful conquest did a little compact Mercedes come to a dead halt on the opposite side.

The blinker–engaged.

I’m thinking What is this loser doing? I’m clearly waiting for this spot. It’s mine… Why are you still here? You can see me. I know you can see me.

The situation suddenly turned into survival of the fittest. I became a bull snorting and pawing my hoof in the dirt awaiting the swoosh of the red cape that would be my signal to go for it. That signal, of course, was the car already occupying the space to begin the surrender of their coveted prime real estate parking spot.

Now, these situations are extremely uncomfortable for me. I don’t like confrontation especially when I am unsure of what is even happening. I was just praying the car leaving would back out with its tail facing me so the other car would be blocked from getting in.

As we sat there waiting I desperately tried avoiding eye contact. It was taking forever.

I am really uncomfortable. I am acting like I’m not. I don’t even notice you. I’m dying.

But I had to look. I had to see what type of person would have the audacity to challenge me for this spot that’s so clearly mine.

I did it. I looked. It was a couple. A man and woman probably around my age.

And they were laughing.


As I sat there claiming my territory like a dog in heat guarding its bitch, wondering what they could possibly be thinking, it all became crystal clear.


As I look back over to the spot the tiny car was leaving, I begin to realize that there is no possible way my big ass Armada is fitting into that already tight spot currently flanked by a car on both sides, one of them parked by a driver so inept that I began to feel sorry for their life and what had become of it.

I wanted to surrender. My girls, sitting on the edge of their seats hunched over mine watching the whole thing go down said, “Don’t do it.”

Ok. I guess I’m going to see this debacle all the way to it’s dire end.

Well, what I wished for earlier happened, and as the car backed out of the spot, I was left with the perfect opportunity to slide right in behind him. Great.

Avoiding eye contact completely at this point with the demon couple, I begin my comedy of errors and slowly go toward the spot that is also laughing at me.

I get the corner of my front right bumper in. Nothing else.

I asked the girls the obvious.

Their reply was, “Yes, they are still there.”

I said, “I’m ready to give up. It’s over.”

My competitive girls said, “No mom! You can do it.”

“Science or math or something clearly says I can’t!”

“Try again.”

So, as I back up and twist my steering wheel into combinations of twists and turns it’s never felt before, begging my wheels to do something that would’ve required a seance and a few witches chanting, my pits sweating profusely, the “Waiters” laughing even harder (I imagine because there is no way I’m looking at them), we all realize that this isn’t happening.

It’s time. The white flag is waved.

In my final reverse (after too many to count), I straighten up my vehicle, hold my head up high and drive past the laughing couple with my middle finger cleverly directed at them and screech my tires so loudly that their car alarm goes off. Hahahahaha! That’ll teach ‘em.

Ok, let me tell you what I really did once my juvenile fantasy was over.

I straightened up my wheel, I held my head up high, and I drove right past the haters. I can’t see you. You can’t see me. You don’t exist. Didn’t even know you were there.

Humility is real.

I was so angry. At myself.

Why did I stay?

I stayed because I didn’t want to give in and look meek or sheepish.

Why look meek when the title buffoon is up for grabs?

Go big or go home…with your tail between your legs.

So, yes, it was my spot first, and they shouldn’t have tried to get it. (Me being right.)

But, the reality was that it was never going to work for me. (Me being wrong.)

So, moral of the story: If you are going to fight the fight, make sure it’s one you can win.

About Amy Rafferty Slagle

I am a middle school teacher juggling career, husband (ooh la la), and twin tomboys (good grief). I have a passion for writing and crave laughter just about as much as frozen yogurt. This is my attempt at sharing the madness of my world, my mind, and my humor. View all posts by Amy Rafferty Slagle

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