Monday, July 16, 2007

XO goes in search of the elusive Downtown Parking Beasty

So Tony over at TKC and his favorite new lurker, "thepaintman" have been singing this shrill duet about how


Well, I don't take nobody's word for nuthin', so I decide to put on my reporter's hat and engage in some hard-hitting, investigative journalism and get to the bottom of this conundrum.

I set out in search of The Truth. I start walking south on Walnut and HOLY FUCK! What the hell is THAT?!?

It looks like a short little sign pole of some sort. But instead of a sign it has this mechanical gadget type thing on top. I make a few inquiries amongst the natives and learn that this futuristic device is called a "parking meter" and it denotes a "parking place" where people may park their cars. Apparently the downtown streets are lined with them like picket fences in Iowa and many of them are, like this one, unused and available for parking.

And this is at 10:30am on a working Monday in downtown Kansas City! WOW!!

I am also informed that the menacingly dark, gaping maw across the street is NOT a cave filled with hungry bears, but something called a "parking garage" where dark openings are sold to waiting vehicles for a price. Such depraved decadence!!

I guess my quest is over and my mission is complete! I'll just head back to WHOA! What the fuck?

It's another one of those "parking garages"! Not a block away from the other one!

This is amazing! What a coincidence that must JAYSUS!!

I almost fell in! They should put up a warning sign or something so people don't HOLY CRAP!!

This is getting ridiculous! I'm starting to doubt that Tony or thepaintman have ever been OMG!!

Apparently this is the hindmost orifice of the previously pictured beastie. Not only are these critters prolific, they appear to have many, umm, "openings". Yuck!

I'm beginning to wonder if I can even make it safely back to work without encountering another FUCK ME RUNNING!!

AAAGGGGHHHH!!! They're everywhere!!! RUNAWAY! RUNAWAY!!

This appears to be just an embryo. My GOD! It will be HUGE! Look at the pre-fab SLABS on that fucker! It will take up a whole city block! I've never seen anything so GODDAMN!!!!

This one is even bigger than the other one!! My GOD!

This like one of those George Romero zombie movies! I can't turn around without SHIT!!!

I can't get away!!

They're all over the place!


There's no escape!!

It's like they can read my mind! No matter where I go or which way I turn, one of them is there, waiting for me, singing that Siren Song..."come in, come in, come in"

"park in ME, park in ME!"

"NO!! Park in ME! In ME!!

"Don't listen to that SLUT! Slide your big ol' SUV right in here, baby!"

"That skanky ol' bitch don't know how to treat a Gas Guzzler like you! C'mon over here! I'll make you write home to momma!"

"PSSSST! Don't listen to them ho's! I'm all sleek and shiny! You know you like that!"

"I'm a bit busy right now, but as soon as he is done with me, I am all yours, baby!"

I manage to resist the temptations of these seductive whores and make it safely back to the loving bosom of my loyal partner.

By the way, all of these "elusive downtown parking spaces" were found within about a 4-6 block radius during a 15 minute walk and virtually all of them are FREE to the public at nights and on weekends. It's only us folk who work downtown and need a place to park everyday during business hours that get fisted.

So can somebody please splain it to me? What the fuck is this alledged problem with finding a place to park downtown?


Heather said...

I don't know about the Great Parking Drought of 2007, but this was a damn funny post.

Xavier Onassis said...

Thank you! See you next week!

Captain Spaulding said...

Did you get the call from CBS yet X?

An exec buddy told me they had found the solution to Katie Couric Syndrome and they were gonna call you after they quit laughing.

Wait- that buddy works at Comedy Central I think...

Dan said...

Brilliant work. This afternoon, I had to go to the West side of downtown, the middle part of downtown, and then City Hall. Between 3:15 and 3:30, I EASILY found parking for all three missions.

Perhaps the people who complain about parking downtown ought to come on down and visit.

Xavier Onassis said...

I knew you were busy.

I saw your appointment on the mayor's calendar. LOL!

I would contend that downtown consists of little more than parking garages! I think there are so many of them existing and under construction that they are a blight and an eyesore.

Thank GOD that the light rail link between the zoo and the airport and the gondola between Union Station and Liberty Memorial will solve all of these problems.

God Bless Clay Chastain!!!

Tony said...

LOL! That's awesome. I like the photo of me and all you need to do is add 18k cars to the mix and you've found a solution.

I know that I'd like to pay 5 bucks for parking to shop at the same places that Oak park Mall has with even easier parking . . . For free.

Seriously, put your application in to be City Manager!!!

travelingal said...

If XO can do this on his morning break, think what he can do on his lunch hour! My God, he can cover the entire city...maybe even do some investigative reporting in the burbs!

Our very own Man on the Street !

Xavier Onassis said...

Tony - Just be grateful I put your name above "Sonny".

thepaintman is gonna be pissed.


I know thats how many seats the Big Glass Wok has. But how many of those do you think will actually be filled by whatever Amateur Womens Junior Ice Bowling League Expansion Team that is signed up as the major attraction to bring people downtown?

I'm thinking those two or three empty parking meters should more than suffice.

"The D" said...

YOU FUCKIN TELL'EM XO!! Funniest post of the day!! And I learned so much! And I just read the first paragraph.

Anonymous said...

there's 18,500 seats in the arena. City ordinance would consider 4 persons to a car so the city needs 4625 parking spaces.
With all that picture taking how many parking spaces did you count to? You probably didn't count over 2000.
Now you can go back and tally the parking spaces.

crse said...

Dude, you are so the bill moyers of parking. Its beautiful.

Xavier Onassis said...

paint - Actually, I have a life and don't really care all that much, so I think I'll just toss that one back in your lap. You are the one saying there is a problem so you must already know exactly how many parking spaces are available within walking distance of the new arena and how many are needed. Perhaps you can share your gap analysis with the rest of us.

Your last comment seems to imply that the arena will be hosting sold-out events.

Are you serious?

Keith Sader said...

Wait, there aren't bears in those caves?!

DaveKCMO said...

there aren't 80,000 free parking spaces at arrowhead. how ever did it last this long?

satyavati said...

OK, this was totally cute, but I wanted to tell you something else. I would have done it by email but I don't have yours. Anyway, I was listening to some ooooooold music and I heard this line and it made me think of you and your politics:
As the reasons for the carnage cut their meat and lick the gravy
We all adore the war machine and feed it with our babies

That's it. Now I can get it out of my head.

Brent said...

Ha. Well done. And you never even ventured south of the Arena to the crossroads which has TONS of parking -- especially in the evenings. People may have to actually walk a block or two before or after events...most cities refer to this as pedestrian traffic that then wanders into the many bars and restaurants.

Not to mention we have this thing called the Max (and hopefully some day light rail) that people can park at Union Station, or the Plaza and take public transit downtown and be dropped off at the door....

The only people who complain about downtown parking are the people who don't go downtown.

m.toast said...

>The only people who complain about downtown parking are the people who don't go downtown.


Faith said...

This had me laughing, too, XO.

And if there are less than even 3,000 spaces in all of those structures you pointed out, I'll kiss a spiderpig. I'm pretty sure there are at least 5,000 parking spots in the downtown area.

Living in Boston a few years ago, I didn't even have a CAR. *GASP!* I know, I know...I somehow figured out how to use these confounded things at the bottom of my legs called "feet," or so I've heard, in order to get myself around the 3 square miles of the city. Amazing stuff, but it's true!

Off to a meeting now...envy me, yo.

scooterj said...

This post had me rolling with laughter, VERY well done!

Painter, those aren't two-car garages, I'm pretty sure there's easily several thousand spaces there.

I took a half-hour walk around downtown over lunch today. Not only did I see several more garages, I also saw something even more impossible according to TKC. I saw not one, not two, not three, but four instances of people pulling up and parking right in front of the buildings that they then went inside. :)

Anonymous said...

City Ordinances says the 4625 parking spaces have to be within so many feet within the business ( or Sprint Arena ). I'm thinking it is 250 feet.
The city is setting a bad example.
There is more than one entrance to a parking garage. You can't take the same picture twice of one garage and call it two garages.
Most of those parking garages are far away from the Sprint Arena, Isn't that one across the street from Bazooka's. Petticott Lane is a vigarating walk to the arena.
Too bad Stan Durwood died.

Dave, did you get a job yet?

KC Sponge said...

Um, you're freakin hilarious.

It's too bad that hilarious has so many syllables, because, really it's a better adjective than hip - more appropriate and honestly, XO - 'hip' is not so hip anymore. I know, I've tried.

Or maybe you could be Hip Hop Suburban White Guy - but you'd have to change the look. (btw - love your meez guy, wish you had eyebrows like him . . . do you have eyebrows?)

Faith said...

"Vigarating"? Is that French, or something?

No, actually, I'm pretty sure it's not. Perhaps you meant "invigorating," Paintman?

Look, here's the deal: If people are so put out about walking more than 250 feet from a parking garage/lot/spot to their destination, then they should try visiting a "real" city for a bit, and get the feel for it. I took a "vigarating" walk with my brother around Boston one afternoon when I lived there in 1999. We walked, quite literally, from one end of the city to the other in about 2 hours. Sauntered, really. Stopped for coffee at one point, since it was a bit chilly out at that time of year. And somehow...AMAZINGLY...I still had the energy to go to work that night for 5 hours. (Retail. At a Mall. During the holiday season.)

The thing is, Kansas City IS a "real" city, so people don't even need to travel too far to have such an experience! Walking is good. Walking a 1/4 mile to get from point A to point B isn't all that hard. And if it is? Then people can call a fucking cab, for chrissakes. City ordinance...stoopid. I can only imagine how hard city planners would laugh at such an ordinance in a place like New York, Chicago, or Boston.

satyavati said...

Is that what this is all about? People are pissed off because they have to walk a little bit? Hell, I used to work in a hospital whose main concourse was 1/4 mile from end to end. Indoors. And last time I was in Manhattan, I walked from Grand Central to Ground Zero, which is probably close to five miles.

Are KC people really that lazy? It's more than 250 feet to the end of my driveway. Maybe the local hospitals should fire up a 'walk and be healthy' campaign. I can't believe that this is what this is really all about.

Xavier Onassis said...

paint - "City Ordinances says the 4625 parking spaces have to be within so many feet within the business ( or Sprint Arena ). I'm thinking it is 250 feet." WHAT? Are you serious? There is actually a city ordinance that requires citizens attending an event or shopping at a business to be ginormous, wheezing, sweaty, panting, waddling beasts that can't lumber their carcasses more than 250 feet without being able to file a complaint?

Maybe those people should spend more time PLAYING basketball or hockey than sitting on their asses watching other people do it.

"There is more than one entrance to a parking garage. You can't take the same picture twice of one garage and call it two garages."

I didn't doofus. There were only two instances of pictures of the same garage. I took two pictures of different entrances to the Town Pavillion garage (which I so cleverly referred to as 'orifices', heh heh, I just crack myself up), and I started and ended at the same garage so there are two identical shots of that one. Every other shot was a separate and unique garage.

Have you ever even been downtown?

"Most of those parking garages are far away from the Sprint Arena,..."

Far away? Are you serious?

You pick whichever garage I took a picture of that you think is the farthest away from the Sprint Arena and I will guarantee you that it is a whole lot closer to the arena than the distance you would walk from your parking spot at Arrowhead for a sold out Chiefs game to your seat in the stadium.

And walking through downtown is a hell of a lot more fun and entertaining than walking across acres of concrete filled with drunken football fans with man-boobs painted in Chiefs colors eating Polish sausages and sucking on their beer-helmet straws.

"... Isn't that one across the street from Bazooka's. Petticott Lane is a vigarating walk to the arena."

OK, three things. I didn't go south of the arena so I wasn't near Bazooka's (not that I didn't want to be! I loves me some boobies!!); Two, it's PettiCOAT lane, not Petticott; and it is the walk FROM the arena TO Bazooka's that would be VIAGRAting, not vigarating.

kcsponge - thanks! Welcome. And yeah, I got eyebrows. I got Jack Nicholson eyebrows. And you know what they say...once you go Jack, you never go back!

faith and satyavati - I agree. I walk more than 250 feet just going back and forth to the printer and to lunch. In between those times, I walk around a 4-6 square block radius downtown, several times a day, everyday, just because I like it.

KC Sponge said...

I thought it was "The Jacker the berry, the graper the juice . . . " I always get those things messed up.

Waldo Oiseau said...

Love it, love it, and too funny! I run errands or have dinner downtown regularly and ALWAYS find easy parking. According to, there are tens of thousands of parking spaces within 5-10 minutes' walking distance of the arena. Sounds good to me.

XO, what are you going to report on next? Us sorry saps at work need a little diversion! Excellent commentary; well done.

The DLC said...

It's not unusual to walk more than 250 feet across a surface lot to the entrance of a suburban mall or big box store.