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True Tales From Parks and Recreation - The No Standing Zone

Note: I used to work for a park slowly in continued development in Manhattan that is five miles along the waterfront of the Hudson River. As a Public Programs Coordinator, yours truly handled anything public related in regards to permitting (athletic facilities, film shoots, photo shoots, weddings, and other small gatherings), and of course, dealing with any questions or inquiries from the public. The following series will present stories, e-mails, phone calls, conversations, interactions, and sights I've seen from the people of New York City in regards to a public park. And yes, these are all real! And are all true!

Welcome to another little snippet of Parks and Recreation.

I've been out of Parks and Recreation now for about a year, but the summertime and the warm weather  reminds me of those crazy days. Working now in college athletics where summertime is the down time as opposed to Parks and Rec where it is the opposite, I plan on stopping over to my old stomping grounds to take in those same concerts, events, and outdoor movies I had helped coordinate. 

With that said, the nostalgic feeling made me think of one of my favorite stories that occurred in Parks and Recreation. And as always, yes, this is very true.

As described in previous True Tales, there are some individuals on the Parks Enforcement squad that are wonderful, and others that simply make you wonder how they got through the academy. 

This tale begins on a warm summer day where there was a patron who happened to be standing in a loading area for one of the Piers, simply waited for his son to catch up on his bike. A Parks Enforcement officer, new on the job, quickly motors over and confronts the man. This is how the story was told to me, and was described in the incident report. 

Officer: Sir, you can't do that. 

Man: Do what? 

Officer: You are in violation of the rules of New York City, and the rules of the Park. 

Man: What? I'm standing here, waiting for my kid.

Officer: As you can see by that sign, this is a no standing area. 

Man: Are you serious? That's for cars and trucks. For this loading dock. Are you really serious?

Officer: Sir, it states, "No Standing" and you are standing in this area. 

Man: I'm not taking that ticket! 

To make a long, and rather ridiculous confrontation short, the Park Enforcement officer issued two citations to the man, one for "standing in a No Standing area" and the other for disorderly conduct. 

I'm sure the man beat both tickets, but never will I ever believe I will hear again an officer giving a person a ticket for being in a No Standing area. Literally standing in a no standing area zone. What would he have done if a car was parked in this area? Who knows? 

You can't make this stuff up. Oh, how I miss you sometimes Parks and Recreation.

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An establishment cannot uphold systemic injustice, and attempt to condemn it, simultaneously.

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