“Jackass”: Starbucks Parking Lot Edition

In the TV show “Jackass,” contestants tried to outdo previous dangerous, dumb and antisocial stunts.

In Westport’s Post Road Starbucks version of the game, drivers engage in increasingly rude, self-centered, entitled behavior.

First they park on the grass. Then they block one of the entrance/exit lanes.

Yesterday, it came to this:

Starbucks - Diane Lowman

The driver just stopped. Plopped her car in the middle of the lot. And waltzed into Starbucks, preventing everyone else from getting around.

Diane Lowman — who took the photo — told the driver when she returned, “This was a really inappropriate place to park.”

The driver got nasty. Diane took a picture of the car and plate, and called the police. The driver accused Diane of threatening and harassing her.

Diane adds, “The police officer (who was very nice, and whose time I felt badly about wasting ) said they are called daily to this location, which should never have been zoned for so many cars in the first place. He said he’s made several arrests over belligerent confrontations.”

And, Diane says, “Starbucks says it has no control over the lot, as it doesn’t own the building.”

So, she wonders: “Whose ‘problem’ is this to address, and solve?”


34 responses to ““Jackass”: Starbucks Parking Lot Edition

  1. I’ve stopped going to Starbucks. there are plenty of nice coffee places with adequate parking.

    • cheryl McKenna Kritzer

      Good suggestion John Hartwell! maybe they will go out of Biz in that location….

      • Nancy Hunter Wilson

        Please read Jaclyn Jeffrey’s post below beginning “Why?”

      • Nancy Hunter Wilson

        Or, pick up a fresh-off-the-press copy of “Crime and Punishment: Westport Style”. Quite enlightening, especially for those who feel a need to get rid of worthless vermin.

  2. Jaclyn Jeffrey

    In previous posts about Starbucks and the parking lot I have often said that despite that outrageous displays of entitlement I was happy to report that the handicapped space was off limits even for those with the grandest sense of entitlement (such as plopping one’s car in the middle of the parking lot as shown in today’s photo.) Alas, I was proven wrong. Last week, someone had the audacity not to park in the handicapped space but to park perpendicular to it so as to block the handicapped space entirely. Several months back in this Starbucks I witnessed a little girl of about 8 demand two pastries from her mother. Her mother replied that she could only have one. The conversation continued, the mother said, “No” several times, the whining escalated and resulted in the daughter taking several steps back and kicking her mother in the shins. Hmmm… I wonder where she learned that? I wonder where the mother had parked her car?

  3. Whose problem is this to solve? The Starbucks Man http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x-du3jcf_Lg

  4. Jaclyn Jeffrey

    Why? Starbucks is not responsible for this. the customers who do this are responsible. If one is too selfish to figure out that they shouldn’t park in the middle of a parking lot, they deserve the ticket. How hard is it to either come back later, circle the parking lot a few times, pull to the side and wait or go somewhere else. The baristas at this Starbucks are lovely, polite, talented and make great coffee… that is why it is always crowded. Why penalize the staff for doing their jobs so well?

  5. Elise Gabriele

    I’ve stopped going to that Starbucks, or “Far-bucks,” as my sister in law refers to it, solely based on the parking issues, and will go out of my way to go to the one downtown (“near-bucks”).

  6. Horsefeathers! Unless their lease is unusually unique, most leases convey the same rights as ownership.

    The problem may be that the owner of the business is a national chain with office’s too remote to be aware of this type of problem — unless someone directs upper management’s attention to the on-going issue as well-documented on this site.

    The problem has nothing to do with zoning. The property was historically the home of “Crazy Vin’s” — a tavern of questionable esthetics whose principal attraction was topless dancers. The change from tavern to coffee shop would not have required special approval.

    But speaking of zoning — I’m reminded that our P&ZC Chairman recently opted to light a candle instead of cursing the darkness when he collected more than 400 discarded dog-do bags at Winslow Park before publically complaining.

    Perhaps it’s time to tell the Starbuck’s folks that we’re all taking our business to Dunkin Donuts until they clean up their local act.

    • Jaclyn Jeffrey

      Clean up their local act? And do what? I am all for accountability and taking responsibility, but what do you expect Starbucks to do? That is like punishing parents for the antics of their grown-up, adult children. These are adults behaving in an inappropriate, boorish, selfish manner who don’t have the good sense to wait their turn or to go elsewhere. This is not a Starbucks’ issue, this an issue of common courtesy and common sense that is often lacking in our area.

    • Gary Singer

      Gloria, great idea. And if that will be a new trip for you, you will discover that Dunkin Donuts makes a far better, tastier cup of coffee than does Starbucks. No fancy french names or sizes, just better coffee. And at a better price.

  7. Don Willmott

    Parking is often a hot topic here. So let me ask: how did people park in the good old days when cars were really huge? SUVs are big, but they aren’t long. Anyone have stories about navigating around town and parallel parking in their ’59 Cadillac or their ’72 LTD Country Squire wagon?

  8. Andy Bangser

    The baristas there are wonderful. We don’t expect them to direct traffic. Perhaps we should ask the police to stop cars with NY plates at the border 🙂

  9. Planning and Zoning for allowing a Starbucks in a location where there is obviously not enough parking space.

  10. Scott Smith

    Too bad this Starbucks isn’t zoned/designed for drive-through. That would solve these sorts of over-caffeinated parking issues– and it might give rise to random acts of kindness like this one by our neighbors in Newington:
    Would love to see that happen in our town!

  11. Westport parking stories on 06880 have struck me as somewhat humorous – sorry – but this one is just … not laughing here. Lawsuit waiting to happen. So obnoxious. NY plates on the offender’s car, looks like. You all should start a kindness movement in that parking lot and see what happens — take Westport back or it just becomes another rich, entitled NYC bedroom community vs what it really is or could be again. The only way to transform the world is to be what’s missing.

  12. Nancy Hunter Wilson

    Someone should publish a compilation of these parking stories and watch it rise to #1 on the NYT bestsellers list (ironic). How would it end, though?
    What would the title be? Maybe something akin to “Lord of the flies”.

    Or, Westport could become a gated town.

  13. Nancy Powers Conklin

    Easy solution-Starbucks hires a “Rent-a-Cop” in a very official looking uniform to stand outside and “ticket” cars that are illegally parked or, better yet, call the police to handle any unruly parkers. But, I am sure that there are none of those type people in Westport!! If the town allowed this business to open there with not enough legal parking available, then it is the town’s fault. And, as mentioned above, Starbuck’s is paying rent and does have the right to enforce parking regulations in its lot!

  14. Marcy Fralick

    I agree with Nancy that the off-duty patrolman, making some extra money working the parking lot could ease the situation tremendously. People don’t want tickets, and the presence of law enforcement just might make the caffeine-starved patrons be a little more civil. Or, there’s always the “Denver Boot”.

    Or, are there not white lines delineating parking spaces marked on the lot? If not, a can of paint would fix that issue. Then tickets could be issued by our off-duty cop for parking illegally.

  15. Molly Davis

    This sounds like a great– and missed opportunity for a local tow-service to troll around. Perhaps if these cars are INSTANTLY booted and then towed as they are waiting for their triple-skinny-no-foam-one-splenda-decaf latte, they’ll be FORCED to simmer on their coffee and deal with the reality and gravity of their selfish behavior.

    • Jaclyn Jeffrey

      Without question, the behavior of some customers at this Starbucks is rude, selfish, rude, boorish and shocking. That said, is it illegal?

  16. Steve Stein

    Starbucks should hire someone- whose only qualification is being a really fast runner. The job is to immediately take a picture of any “entitled” parking, send the photo to Dan for public humiliation and then paste a sign on the entitled car saying “What you have done in this parking lot is rude, crude, selfish, boorish and shocking- but not illegal.” The requirement for being a fast runner is self explanatory.

  17. Nancy Hunter Wilson

    Definitely “Lord of the flies”.

  18. James Holmes

    NY A$$hole = Future Westporter

    Probably in town looking for a house, loves all of the quaint old historic homes, can’t wait to tear one down and build some big new ugly box.

    Enjoy your coffee, hope you spilled it on your crotch.

  19. Nancy Hunter Wilson

    I really do hope this is all a sad joke before “Lord of the flies in Westport” is published. Then again, no one will be around to read it.

  20. Nancy Hunter Wilson

    Skip the book and go straight to a Cannes documentary and cash in.
    You’ll need a catchier title, but, then again no one will be around to view it.

  21. Jamie Walsh

    James Holmes…I certainly think Karma gets them in the long run…and yeah…let’s face it….it’s certainly a bitch when you spill coffee or hot beverage on your crotch…

  22. jerrymacdaid

    If I recall my Starbucks parking lot geography correctly, it looks like the Audi next door is blocking the handicapped space and, in any event, it parked where there isn’t a spot. Lots of bad parkers out there.

  23. Nancy Hunter Wilson

    Perfect. All the characters are matched for the project. Then again, no one will be around to care.

  24. Sheylah Flynn

    As my father always said, too many asses, not enough holes!

  25. Affluenza in Westport.

    But, really, this was another P&Z special. Is Shake Shack much better? (I visit both places – but they both seem to be wildly inappropriate access and parking situations. When traffic spilled over into the Cedar Brook Cafe lot, it wasn’t as bad – but that was far from ideal.

    For those (like me) who insist on SBX in the morning, I would suggest that the Post Road Fairfield SBX has much easier access.

  26. Dr. Al Levy

    Just a note: This inconsiderate driver has New York license plates.

  27. Nancy Hunter Wilson

    New title: “Crime and punishment, Westport style”.

  28. John Siddell

    Just another rude thoughtless person who cares only about themselves, not surprising they have an out of state plate which means they circumvent CT state taxes in some way. Whomever you are, go back to where you came from please!!