A perfect illustration the other day of why you should back into parking spaces.
I was pulling out of my (backed-into) space at Fourbucks, turning right and heading for the parking lot exit.
An S-Class Mercedes on the opposite side of the laneway to my right had nosed in to his space. The Merc's tinted windows meant I couldn't see if anyone was in the car, but just as I approached it, I saw its back-up lights flick on.
I leaned on my horn, as I tried to decide if I had time and space to stop and let the guy back up in front of me, with the attendant risk that he'd haul his steering wheel left-hand down and back right into me; or to speed up and get past him.
Fortunately, I was able to do the latter.
But the entire episode would have been avoided if the Merc driver had just backed into his spot.
For those of you who haven't been following this discussion, if you're parking in a regular lot, one way or another you're going to have to back up - either into the spot, or out of it. Our theory is that it's much safer to back IN, because as you drive past the spot to size it up, you can see if there's anything in your path.
True, it can be a bit tricky to make sure you can secure the spot, maybe having to fight off another contender for the spot. But at least you can see what's going on when you pull in, and pull out again.
But if you nose in and force yourself to back OUT, you can't see what's coming and you end up running into a cute little green Miata.
Or a kid on a bike.
Now you don't even have to make this choice if you can find a 'drive-through' spot, either a double-ended spot or a double end-to-end spot where you can drive in to the first and right into the second, park, then drive straight out again when you return.
But in most parking lots, where the spaces abut a sidewalk, a fence, a wall, or a curb stone, that option is not available.
So in those cases, please do yourself and everyone else a favour - please back in.