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DAN'S PAPERS, June 11, 2010 Page 40 www.danshamptons.com

Twentysomething…By David Lion Rattiner Parking Tickets The young teenage parking ticket givers are on the hunt now, and they terrify me. We used to call the traffic cops in the Hamptons brownies because they used to wear brown uniforms, but today a young boy or girl is in a reflective yellow vest, armed with a stick that has chalk on it and ticket giving power. They are everywhere in East Hampton. The police presence in the Hamptons is always strong in the summertime because of the increased population and the amount of people who come out here, party hard and then get behind the wheel. So we all know that the police are necessary, but at the same time, even if you haven’t done anything wrong and

are all up to date on everything with your car, it’s still nerve-racking. Being a local teenager in East Hampton was a very happy time when it came to parking because half of the traffic cops were guys that you went to school with and people that you knew. But today, I park my car with the same caution that I park my car in New York City. I study the sign, I check my watch, I look around for anything suspicious, and then I move on. So far, I’ve avoided parking tickets, mainly due to the fear of getting one, but others haven’t been so lucky. If you’re in the mood to people watch in the Hamptons, sit on a bench and watch people react to their parking tickets.

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As a former beach attendant at Main Beach in East Hampton, I know how crazy people can get about parking. And since there are very few things in East Hampton that I can afford to buy or do, other than get a cup of coffee and people watch, I did this last Saturday. While sitting on a bench on Newtown Lane, I observed. There he was, a young man with sunglasses, a stick, a badge and a pen. Two of his colleagues were manning a crosswalk, stopping traffic to let people cross. This is part of the pleasure of walking in the Hamptons, being able to cross the street instantly. With officials stopping traffic for you, it makes you feel like the Governor. Across the street, a ticket was being written, and in a matter of minutes the show began. The car was a Mercedes and the woman was wearing a hat and armed with shopping bags. She got to her car, saw the ticket, picked it up off of the windshield and looked around the world. How could this happen to me? She thought. Do these people have any idea WHO I AM? Somebody must get an earful for this. And so she loaded up her car with her bags, and paced to the left, in search of the young man with the badge and sunglasses. She demanded an explanation. And off she went down the block to the corner of Ellie Tahari, but no traffic cop was there, and so she headed back up the street, ticket in hand for all to see. What kind of society are we living in? She thought. The New York Post will want to hear about this injustice. And she walked and found the young future police officer and showed him the ticket. I took a sip of my coffee. This was better than going to the movies. She pointed at the ticket and then the young man pointed at her car. He was cool as a cucumber. This was not his first rodeo, however you could tell that this wasn’t the woman’s first rodeo either. There is no doubt in my mind that this lady has received numerous free airline tickets thanks to a little temper tantrum now and again at the airport. It works for her. She knows what’s she’s doing. But the young boy held strong. He shook his head. I’m sorry, he explained, you can call the clerk’s office and fight the ticket if you’d like. I can’t reverse this. Have a nice day. But…… But…… But nothing. And then the woman began to talk to others walking by her. It was time for her to start a revolution. It was time for her to gather supporters, witnesses, testimony, protestors. She grabbed somebody in the street who had a stroller and the concerned man politely told her sorry, and moved on. The young traffic officer was moving on as well. The woman stood there. As far as she was concerned, the world was coming to an end. Things like this just shouldn’t happen. It’s wrong. It’s unjust. It’s not fair. And she went back to her Mercedes and pulled away, no doubt leaving a message with her lawyer. She’ll show these people who’s boss.

Dan's Papers June 11, 2010  

Dan's Papers, the 51-year-old bible of the Hamptons, is owned by Manhattan Media, a multi-media publishing company based in New York City,...

Dan's Papers June 11, 2010  

Dan's Papers, the 51-year-old bible of the Hamptons, is owned by Manhattan Media, a multi-media publishing company based in New York City,...

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