Monday, December 31, 2007

It’s Dona’s Release Week!

In honor of the release of Dona Sarkar’s first book,

the Buzz Girls are having a “How To” Week. We will take turns sharing with our readers what we hope is interesting "How To" information (and I understand there's going to be a book giveaway later in the week, too).

I'm up first!

Since many states no longer require parallel parking as part of the driving exam, I’ve become aware that many young people today simply don’t know how to parallel park. I, on the other hand, not only had to learn it for the exam, but to survive, as more often than not in the community where I grew up, it was parallel park--or nothing. So, here you have it:

How To Parallel Park

• Find an empty space. Remember you need at least an extra three feet more than your vehicle.

• Make sure you are clear before stopping, and be sure to signal. If a car is behind you, you can wave them past you.

• Line up your vehicle with the parked vehicle directly in front of the spot. Don't get too close on the side, or you might scrape the other car. But you also don't want to be too far away--two or three feet will suffice. Position your vehicle parallel to the parked car, aligning your bumpers or staying two or three feet behind.

• Put your vehicle in reverse. Check the driver-side mirror to make sure the street behind you is clear of traffic before you begin to back up. Look over your other shoulder at the space to assess the gap. Turn the steering wheel hard right.

• Release the brakes and slowly begin backing into the turn. Check in front of and around your car often. Make sure you remain far enough away from the rear bumper of the vehicle in front of you as you slide in. If your rear tire hits the curb, you've gone too far; just shift gears and pull forward a few feet if this happens.

• Turn the steering wheel to the left once the rear of your vehicle is predominantly in the space, still going backward. This is where you snake your way completely into the space and straighten out your car at the same time. Continue in reverse as far back as you can without tapping the bumper of the vehicle behind you.

• Shift into drive and turn the steering wheel to the right again, and move forward gently toward the curb while centering your vehicle in the space.

And you’re in! See--it wasn’t so bad!

So tell me now truthfully, how do you feel about parallel parking? Is it a piece of cake, something you avoid or somewhere in between?

Happy New Year!

What I’m Reading: Wonderful Tonight, Pattie Boyd


Tina Ferraro
How to Hook a Hottie, January 8, 2008
Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress, out now
The ABC’s of Kissing Boys, Spring, 2009


stephhale said...

Nothing can make me almost break out into hives like having to parallel park. I would prefer to walk a long way to avoid it! :)

Dona Sarkar-Mishra said...

Thanks for kicking off "How To..." week, Tina with a very helpful "How to..." To this day, I still can't parallel park. It's happened where I will drive somewhere with my husband and when faced with parallel-ing, I will get out of the car and let him do it. =)

Everyone else: There will be lots of fun surprises all week long so please check back in throughout the week!!

Anonymous said...

Funny that you should give this "How to" because I am a PRO at parallel parking. Don't ask my why or how, but I always get into the space the first try. So, I love parallel parking!


Wendy Toliver said...

I cannot parallel park to save my life. I think it's because I learned to drive in the 2nd longest car ever made (besides a limo) and never had to for my driver's license. Anyway, great post and HUGE congrat's to Donna! I'm seeing it everywhere already! Woo hooooooo!

TinaFerraro said...

A-ha, it seems we have several non-parallel parkers in the group! I hope my HOW TO inspired a little?!?

Dona, I'm very proud of you and excited about your release, and looking forward to all of the rest of the week's posts!

Marley Gibson said...

Living in a big city, I have to be an expert at parallel parking. Your directions are awesome!

HUGE CONGRATS to Dona for release week!!!!! Whooohoooo!!! We're sooooooooooo proud of you!

Marley = )

Me said...

Excellent How To, Tina! I know I'm a freak of nature, but I actually prefer parallel parking to, um, perpendicular (?) parking. But it has nothing to do with ease/ability and everything to do with the fact that on my very first solo-and-licensed trip to the mall, I bumped a car while trying to park.

And HOOORAYYYY for Dona! I will let you know about placement as soon as I hit my B&N!

Anonymous said...

Congrats on the big release, Dona!

TinaFerraro said...

Yep, Marley, I'm with you on PP being mandatory in big cities.

TLC, that's certainly an unusual perspective about preferring to PP, but I tell you, I don't back down from it, either.

Stephen, thanks so much for visiting and wishing Dona the best!

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