Friday, June 29, 2012

I beat parking tickets. You can too!

I AM ON A ROLL BEATING PARKING TICKETS. Well, sort of. I've beat 2 in the last like 8 years, but I've only gotten like 4 in that time period so I'm beating like half of them.

I probably shouldn't say anything, because now the SFMTA is going to be looking for me and I'm sure they have some NSA-level surveillance shit that can identify my car just from this blog. The SFMTA is very powerful. But anyway, I want to share my good fortune with you and also tell you how to beat parking tickets. Sometimes.

OK, our story begins at the Alemany Flea Market. Wife and I go there a few months ago to buy some used crap or whatever. Here's a picture of it from Google Street View in its empty state. See that red MS Paint arrow? Of course you do. That's where we parked, along that curb. Not by the fire hydrant.

OK, so look at that. Is there ANYTHING about that curb that suggests you can't park there? (BTW, there were also other cars parked there along that curb when we got there.) I mean, there's maybe a hint of some red paint that might have been there, but it's long fucking gone now. And no vertical "NO PARKING" signs or anything. So we park and go buy some stuff and come back and there's a ticket on my car and every other car parked along that curb.


So I write a protest letter and basically say "Hey, no red paint, no signs, how the fuck am I supposed to know you can't park there?" Time passes. Then earlier this week:

"We have reviewed your claim and found it to be valid. Therefore, the citation has been dismissed." BOOM.

The last one I got dismissed was I think in 2004 and it was one of those cop-handwritten tickets, not a SFMTA printed-out ticket, I think for not having my wheels curbed or some shit like that. The cop didn't write the code section on it and I pointed that out and it turns out that's a must-have for parking tickets and so that one got thrown out too.


1. Protest every ticket. If you can't think of a reason, make something up. Protesting buys you at least 4-6 months while it sits on someone's desk that you don't have to pay it. That way, paying it becomes Future You's problem. Fuck Future You, that guy's a dick. Present You can take that $90 and spend it on something worthwhile.

2. Think like an asshole. Look at the ticket and think "Are there any little stupid problems that only a jerk would notice? Like did they get my license plate number wrong? Is the code section wrong? (BTW, you can get to the San Francisco Transportation Code from here. It's got all the rules for parking and the section numbers and shit.)

3. Look at the fucking signs before you park. Duh.

I should also note that I am not 100% with my protests. I was parked in SOMA at one of those "1 Hour Parking without permit" zones and I moved my car down the street after an hour but it turns out I didn't move it far enough. Anyway, still didn't have to pay until like 6 months later.

Let's be careful out there. Have a good weekend!

UPDATE/LATER ADDENDUM: OK, this is like the 4th post in a row with no comments. WTF? Did you guys all get together and decide not to comment any more? Very funny. Ha ha. We all get it.


Andrea Prete said...

No comments? Get over it, you girl. Nobody posts comments on my blog and does that stop me from posting about dreams I have about Paul Rodriguez or Justin Timberlake?

Alissa said...

$150,000 degree v. $90 ticket. WORTH IT.

Tamagosan said...

My better half calls me the other day: "Hey, have you not been commenting on 40goingon28? What's going on?" I thought we had the kind of relationship where I could comment on a public forum and have it be public but not public to him, but OK I guess he reads your posts but not the comments, so that's good I suppose.

But here I am commenting. Just hella busy I guess? Maybe renegotiating my commenting contract with my agent? But happy to be here like a 12 Step meeting because nothing gets me riled up like parking drama! Well OK lots of things but they are all equally fun and riling. Your parking ticket advice is spot-on and should be taught in Driver Ed. Also, congrats at actually being --literally-- validated by the MTA. A dream of mine... It's disturbing to know that they've resorted to phishing, but you're here fighting the good fight. Now, can you please get them dialed into those bastards in the bike lanes? Double parkers --no matter where really just bike lanes happen to be most in my way-- deserve a special place in hell IMO...

Oscar said...

Congrats on getting your tickets dismissed. I got some parking tickets what should I write for having the wrong license? and the other for having no vin on the ticket?

Oscar said...

Congrats on getting your tickets dismissed. I got some parking tickets what should I write for having the wrong license? and the other for having no vin on the ticket?

you mad bro said...

Great article. I was searching on Google how to fight a red zone parking ticket when I stumbled across this awesome piece.the way you word everything brings life to your writings. Btw, any advice for me? I got home late and parked, not knowing my front tire was in the red..there were no cars behind me when I parked. But I don't like getting boxed in, so I parked in the very front next to a driveway. I wasn't even blocking the driveway. Now I have to pay $97 to the lovely city of los Angeles.

umted kop said...

Hi I found your site by mistake when i was searching yahoo for this acne issue, I must say your site is really helpful I also love the design, its amazing!. I don’t have the time at the moment to fully read your site but I have bookmarked it and also add your RSS feeds. I will be back in a day or two. thanks for a great site. Madison Square Garden tickets

Norma Richards said...

Thanks for the advice! Well, if you think that you did nothing wrong, and sure that you followed the rules, you really have the right to object. Just stand firm on your viewpoint and voice out your opinion and concern. That way, they would know that you are pretty much aware of the situation.

Norma Richards @ Just Bail Bond

Ari said...

Very helpful! I hate the fucking SFMTA: I got two parking tickets $88 and $98. Assholes.

Esther Oakley said...

I am amazed that you are able to fight tickets like this! I was never aware of that, I thought that once you got the ticket you were required to pay it. I will bookmark this page and save it for next time!