The May 19, 2000, S.L. Wisenberg Our Town article, "A Lot to Be Thankful For," rekindled my irritating memories of the parking-space sellers in the Wrigleyville neighborhood. Before settling into Roscoe Village, I used to rent around Wrigley Field. To me there was nothing more deplorable than to watch owners/renters of expensive real estate hawk the parking spaces at their homes and condos like a third-world trading bazaar. Instead of holding up a sign that says "Parking $20," why not hold up a sign that says "Welcome to Our Neighborhood Fools--Now Give Us Your $$."
It is very bad PR for the city when persons traveling by car (especially a family with children) go to a ball game and are met with a barrage of space sellers looking to take advantage of their situation. Obviously, the parking around Wrigley is an infrastructure problem that creates the market for the private-party spaces. Despite the infrastructure problem, I do not feel that it is in the best interest of the city to have private space sellers taking advantage of auto commuters to Wrigley Field. The Wisenberg line "The longer you wait the more desperate they (the fans looking for a parking space) are" is a terrible comment and a very negative attitude for the Wrigley neighborhood.
In any event, I think that people are starting to wise up to the parking situation at Wrigley. Earlier this year, a father & son parked on my street and then walked to the game. I guess, however, there will always be, as Wisenberg puts it, that "desperate" newcomer to Wrigley Field.
Since Wisenberg publicly declared income from selling parking spaces, I am sure that this "Other Income" will be showing up on the appropriate line of S.L. Wisenberg's 1040 tax form! Rule one to the fast-buck artist--take your money and keep your mouth shut. It's bad enough that you're out there selling your spaces but please have the courtesy to not gloat in public.
David E. Pilat