Mason County News
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In My Opinion
Time To Do the Spring Cleaning...
Wednesday, May 22, 2013 • Posted May 22, 2013

Every year, I like to take a look at the ideas that been rattling around in my head all year. None of them ever quite prompted me to do a full column on them; but, they are things that stay on my mind a good deal of the time.

And it begins.....

Parking Lots

Parking lots have clearly defined parking spaces. Taking up two spaces is unnecessary. I'm not talking about being a little over the line, I'm talking about the people that park directly on the stripe with two wheels in one parking spot and two wheels in another.

Some of those parking lots have clearly identified spaces for handicapped drivers. Parking in those spots when you don't have a tag or license plate is rude and inconsiderate. If you got a permit for handicapped spots a year ago when you had surgery, there is no reason to keep using those precious spots now just because you have a legal "out."

For the safety of everyone in the parking lot, there are proper directions of traffic flow. I know it's inconvenient to spend the additional three seconds going all the way to the end of the row; but, it's safer for everyone walking to and from their vehicles.

At the most, it's 30 yards back to a "cart corral" where your cart can be returned. Leaving it to drift about the parking area is lazy. When karma finally catches up to you, it will be your car that gets door dings and scratches from the carts left to stray about the parking lot.


When you call someone, you shouldn't assume they will automatically know your voice unless you talk to them on a regular basis. Caller ID has helped the situation; but, even that can be misleading at times.

If you work in a business where you answer the phones, it's very reassuring when I call your business to know that I've reached the right place, and know who I'm speaking to at that moment. Answering a business phone with a solitary "hello" does get the pleasantries out of the way; but, a bit more information is still needed.

If I don't answer my cell phone when you call, don't assume I'm avoiding you. It's much more likely that I'm in a meeting, talking to someone else already, or that I'm at work and doing my job. Just because we all have our phones with us all the time, it doesn't mean we need to answer them every time they ring.

If you work for someone else and you take every call that comes in on your cellphone, or answer every text immediately, maybe you should stay at home so that work doesn't get in the way of your personal communications.

Social Media

Updating people on every single thing you do during the day is not interesting. In fact, when I see too much about you, I begin to wonder if there's anything interesting left to discover on my own.

Airing personal disagreements, romantic failings or perceived sleights on facebook or twitter doesn't make me think less of the people you're attacking. In fact, it's you that I have problems looking in the face when I see you around town because I wonder if I'm the next victim of your online tirades.

We were always taught that the way to maintain civility in polite conversation with other groups of people was to avoid the topics of politics, religion and sex. There are always plenty of people with similar interests you can have conversations with; and, assuming everyone who is online feels the same way you do ends up alienating people who, though different, might have welcomed you as a friend.


When it's overcast or raining, turn on your lights so I can see you better. You might want to turn them on at dawn and dusk as well.

I don't know which way you're going to turn. My pickup has a neat gadget that indicates to people around me which way I'm going to turn, and using the indicator helps all of us avoid unpleasant "entanglements."

I cross the street around the square several times a day. Just because the speed limit says you can drive 30 miles per hour, wouldn't it be safer for all of us if you just slowed down as you make your way around the courthouse? I don't run as fast as I once did, and too many parts of my body move uncomfortably when I have to accelerate suddenly, so I'd appreciate the brakes.

It’s all just my opinion.

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