Okay, can we talk about these parking meters on Hillsborough Street? I get one in front of where the Kinkos used to be. It's about 3:46, and I'm sitting in my car waiting until 4:00, so I can put in $.50 and not have to worry about it any more. The meters stop at 5:00. I notice that both the person parked in front of me, and the one behind me, are doing the same thing.
At about 4:48, I get out just to triple check that it's 5:00 that the meters stop. The meter documentation confirms 5:00, and while looking I'm delighted to see that I have 20 minutes left on the meter -- so when I put my $.50 in, I'll be taken care of.
The girl in the car behind me gets out, and says, "Oh. It must be time, if you're putting your money in."
I hadn't yet put it in, and before I did said, "Actually, it's not yet, but my meter has 20 minutes on it."
"Oh, don't put your money in yet, then, because all it's going to do is eat it."
"It's not going to add an hour to the 20 minutes already on it?" I ask.
"No, they don't want people staying more than an hour. And not only will it not add an hour to that 20 minutes, it won't even bump that 20 minutes already on it up to an hour. It will just eat your quarters, and you'll have to come back in 20 minutes to put $.50 more in, which you can do only after it expires."
Bastards, I think, and then I realize that's it's actually a curse that there's 20 minutes left on the meter. And of course, by this time, all of the other spots are taken.
I go into the building, do a little bit of IBM editing work that has to be done for my meeting in the morning, and then go back out after 20 minutes to put $.50 in. What a hassle.
My usability session with Dr. Miller went real well. It's always amazing to discover how other people think. I took away a few nuggets from the session.
Class was uneventful tonight. We did get into some thought-provoking discussion about mental maps, which at one point got so mind-boggling that I did the "do-do do-do, do-do do-do" ululating from The Twilight Zone.
At home, Kathryn was in her yard, and we talked for a bit. That woman never ceases to get me rolling. She told me about going across the street to the girls in the townhouse across from us to let them know that their cat was out.
"Yes, thanks," they said, "We let her out sometimes."
Kathryn responds, "Oh, okay. My cat is an indoor cat, and if she were ever outside, I know I'd appreciate someone telling me."
She continues, just deadpanning this, "And then the girl says to me, while moving her hand in a circle indicating the townhouses just around our area here, 'Oh, you're the lady in charge of this section, aren't you?'"
"The lady in charge of this section!" LOL OMG Like it's a prison camp we're in. "You're the bitch of cell block 9, aren't you?" Too funny.
I spent the entire rest of the evening working on my Google Usability Report. I stopped at 3AM.