Sunday, December 21, 2008

How to Get a Southie Stranger to Shovel Your Walkway

See this dude?

Left-hand side. A bit hard to see. He's holding an orange shovel.

I've never met him before.

But I got him to shovel my walkway.

How could this be possible?

It certainly helps when you:

  • walk outside
  • in full ski gear
  • during heavy snow
  • with your dog
  • and see a newly-created mountain of snow
  • on the shoveled sidewalk
  • outside of your home
  • that you personally shoveled yesterday
  • and then say to him
  • "Did you shovel your car out and dump all of your snow right here?"
  • and he says that he did, since there was nowhere else to put it
  • to which you reply "Well, I'm just going to shovel it right back into your spot if you don't figure out somewhere else to put it."
When we returned from our walk, he had already cleaned up much of the mess that he created on the sidewalk that I shoveled myself yesterday.

No additional threats. Just a "thanks a lot" from me as we went back inside.

I am assuming that he didn't expect the homeowner (me) to emerge from his place during a storm at the moment he was shoveling snow onto the sidewalk.

I am also guessing that without my comments, he might have just left it there on the sidewalk, but of course I can't be certain.

Nonetheless, he was smart.

I would imagine that it wouldn't have been the first time somebody shoveled snow from a spot onto a sidewalk, marked it with a cone upon leaving the following day, and found said cone missing and another car parked there. I do realize that unfortunately penalizes both the original spot-shoveler and potentially the car that parked there thinking it was an available spot (i.e. retribution from the original parker)

Not that I would have done that....


Kathy said...

Yikes. Where does the snow go? Can't put it into the street! Can't pile it on the sidewalk! So many rules living in the city....

Anonymous said...

lol you caught him red-handed, he would be too embarass not to clean up his own mess, especially with you spying on him outside your window.... Out of the curiosity, do alot of cars in your neighborhood get buried under the snow when the snow prowler drove by?

Anonymous said...

between spots and between the sidewalk and the curb.

It's ok, in my opinion, to put a little bit on the sidewalk if you need to, but you MUST leave clearing so it's still usable by at the very least a persons width.

Blocking the sidewalk is just massholish thing to do

Josh said...

not interested in posting their license plate?

Jason said...

Nah, he cleaned up his mess and redeemed himself.

Tax said...

The snow probably fell down off the pile he was making at the curb. It happens and it most likely wasn't intentional. I bet he did intend to clean up any mess he might have made on the sidewalk. So relax there tough guy. I hope next time he puts the snow on your front stairs. Maybe then you'll learn not to be a jerk.

Megan Ramey said...

Good blog, just stumbled upon it when I did a search of 'empty Southie lots'. Just moved here from Madison, WI, a city with record snow amounts last year and they actually ran out of salt.

The snow removal by both residents and the city is a problem, because it lends itself to situations like your's to occur. In other cities, snow emergencies would be declared and all the cars would be moved, the plow would come by and remove the snow and residents would be responsible for clearing their own sidewalks for fear of getting a fine. I know it's a tradition in Southie, but letting people clear their own parking spots is crazy when it's a city's responsibility.

The sidewalks were terrible everywhere yesterday. I run from our place in Southie to Back Bay station and the only sidewalks that were cleared were corporately owned business' (probably for fear of being sued). Not everyone has a car or wants one for that matter and it would be cool if all Boston residents were as responsible as you, Jason.

Sidenote, I also have two dogs (which I pick up after) and they were so pissed off yesterday with the salty paws :)

Jason said...

My dog hates the salt too! I can tell when it gets to her when she limps a little. But she does seem to like wandering around on the ice and crunchy snow!

And re: my being a jerk. I simply heavily suggested he find somewhere else for the snow and thanked him when he did. And I also commented that while I assumed he might have left it on the sidewalk, I couldn't be certain.

That's not being a jerk. I'm rarely a jerk...but can be a good one when needed.

Anonymous said...

you didn't post my comment, jerk

Anonymous said...

The spillage is unavoidable. I think he likely intended to clean up the sidewalk after he finished clearing the spot. That's what most people do. You jumped the gun a little. It's like me telling you to pick up after your dog while he's mid-poop.

Jason said...

Your comment had explicit language. I try to keep this blog clean. Your new comment was better. Thanks.

Josh said...

Hi Megan. I've noticed Boston is pretty good at issueing fines for those residence(s) that do not clear their sidewalk of snow/ice - as long as you alert the city. If you call the Mayor's 24 Hour Constituent Service at 617-635-4500 and give them the violater's address, a green citation ticket will appear on their door.

As for Jason not rarely being a jerk - please see blog entry dated 12.31.2007 regarding the Publick House. It would be easier if Jason could tag that entry as "jerk" as well as future blog entries so we can easily track to see how often he is a jerk.

Jason said...

12.31.2007 is about a year ago. That's a pretty low jerk rate. And Publick House was 2,000% warranted. It still bothers me.