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Can’t you go back to parking down by the river?

March 5th, 2014 · 67 comments

Writes Jack in Seattle: “A friend of ours is a professional tile setter and general handyman. Sometimes he stays over and parks his work van on our block. We found this note on his windshield one morning after Sunday brunch. It’s so typically ‘Seattle’ it’s hard to be offended.”

No offense but this van looks hella creepy at night.  can you park it in front of someone else's house from now on.  I'd really appreciate it.  Thanks :) -easily creeped out neighbor

Meanwhile, Charon noticed that this van-owner in Couer d’Alene, Idaho did get offended, “apparently because he owns a creepy van and people pointed out that it was creepy.”

hey lady I own a home next to the school, I like this van, and now I've been profiled for driving home. I work at the Hayden Library, my wife nurses the dying, you owe us an apology.

P.S. Van owner: Maybe “I own a home next to the school” wasn’t the best way to get your point across here?

related: I don’t know you, and this is crazy…but your boyfriend’s hot, and your parking’s lazy.

extra credit: the 10 creepiest vans []

FILED UNDER: Idaho · kinda creepy · parking · Seattle · smiley

67 responses so far ↓

  • #1   Giger

    I’m mostly offended at the use of “hella”.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 6:12 pm   rating: 54  small thumbs up

    • #1.1   ArtsBeatLA

      Why?! Everyone knows it’s hellakewl to say hella.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 3:33 pm   rating: 7  small thumbs up

    • #1.2   UNILBONKLA

      “Hella”? What is this, 1999?

      Mar 8, 2014 at 6:36 pm   rating: 2  small thumbs up

    • #1.3   hellyah

      Nope, it’s the US west coast. We use hella a helluva lot.

      Mar 9, 2014 at 6:07 pm   rating: 12  small thumbs up

  • #2   The Beast Among Us

    Idaho. Where the men are men unless they drive a creepy van.

    Seattle. Where the men are men until it’s their turn at the 4-way stop sign.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 7:30 pm   rating: 27  small thumbs up

  • #3   uncreative

    I assumed the “I own a home next to the school” was an explanation for why the van was so often driving right by the school.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 8:02 pm   rating: 106  small thumbs up

    • #3.1   NoAdditives

      That doesn’t make it any less potentially creepy.

      Mar 5, 2014 at 8:09 pm   rating: 10  small thumbs up

  • #4   Boo

    Obviously she complained that he was driving near the school in this van and that’s why he mentions that his house is in that neighborhood.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 8:05 pm   rating: 56  small thumbs up

    • #4.1   bdub

      Mar 5, 2014 at 11:14 pm   rating: 3  small thumbs up

    • #4.2   bdub

      wrong spot. riot link was for erin.

      Mar 5, 2014 at 11:17 pm   rating: 2  small thumbs up

    • #4.3   Lab dude

      I assumed that the creeped-out party was so because the van was often *parked* by the school. ‘Cause that would creep ME out way more than just seeing it driven around.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 8:31 am   rating: 14  small thumbs up

  • #5   Erin

    Tell me what ‘typically Seattle’ means in this context? I’m about to be relocated there and I am excited for a whole new world of P-A notes.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 8:05 pm   rating: 14  small thumbs up

    • #5.1   jack spratt

      Seattle is sort of the unofficial capital of the passive aggressive lifestyle. it goes way beyond notes. you will very politely, even cringingly be asked to not breathe so loudly. It is a great place to live though…just don’t let the ‘Seattle Freeze’ get you down. We’re a city of socially awkward nerds and we’re not sure how to deal with all the coolness attributed to us.

      Mar 19, 2014 at 10:16 pm   rating: 2  small thumbs up

  • #6   Boo

    That was not in response to comment #3 – they must have posted while I was typing

    Mar 5, 2014 at 8:06 pm   rating: 1  small thumbs up

  • #7   Stupid sexy Flanders

    Were there clowns in the van??

    Mar 5, 2014 at 8:16 pm   rating: 6  small thumbs up

    • #7.1   The Elf

      Clowns use subcompacts, which is why I’m always unnerved when I see a Smart Fortwo.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 8:22 am   rating: 9  small thumbs up

    • #7.2   Stupid sexy Flanders

      When I was a kid, there was a story going around that clowns were driving a van around my neighborhood trying to kidnapp people. Its an urban legend…normal clowns do drive sub-compact cars…

      Mar 6, 2014 at 1:35 pm   rating: 5  small thumbs up

  • #8   Red Delicious

    So because he likes his van and happens to live near the school someone takes it upon themselves to report him to some group or whatever? That’s like saying because you drive a Hummer I should report you to the EPA. It’s not your freaking deal, leave it be. Team notewriter on this one.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 8:18 pm   rating: 40  small thumbs up

    • #8.1   The Elf

      You mean Team Second Notewriter, right?

      Mar 6, 2014 at 8:23 am   rating: 6  small thumbs up

  • #9   JJ

    How is the van drivers issue that people don’t like his van being parked on the road? As long as it is a public road and people are legally allowed to park there then he isn’t doing anything wrong. And if the note writers have seen it there before they must know who the guy is or at least recognize him and know he is not a creepo but a carpentry worker. Hate to break it to people but vans do not necessarily equal creepy. Pedo’s and weirdo’s drive cars and suv’s too.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 8:29 pm   rating: 40  small thumbs up

  • #10   Cady

    It’s “oeu” in Coeur d’Alene. (Just an obnoxious, Idaho-based copy editor passing through.)

    Mar 5, 2014 at 8:39 pm   rating: 17  small thumbs up

  • #11   Chinchillazilla

    If you don’t want people to get creeped out by your windowless van, putting angry messages on it is not going to help.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 9:04 pm   rating: 20  small thumbs up

    • #11.1   ArtsBeatLA

      no, but you’ll feel a whole lot better expressing your righteous indignation.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 4:15 pm   rating: 8  small thumbs up

    • #11.2   The Elf

      And that, children, is what writing a passive-aggressive note is all about!

      Mar 6, 2014 at 6:35 pm   rating: 13  small thumbs up

    • #11.3   Tesselara


      Mar 7, 2014 at 6:48 am   rating: 1  small thumbs up

  • #12   Sir Puke

    Living in suburbia promotes paranoia.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 9:16 pm   rating: 17  small thumbs up

  • #13   Poltergeist

    Everbody knows the difference between a regular van and a pedophile van is shag carpeting.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 9:42 pm   rating: 42  small thumbs up

    • #13.1   The Elf

      And the free candy.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 8:24 am   rating: 23  small thumbs up

    • #13.2   DaveGI

      Or the puppy!

      Mar 6, 2014 at 7:49 pm   rating: 2  small thumbs up

  • #14   assiveProgressive

    it was the wraparound mirrored sunglasses, the unclothed top and bottom, and the way you waggled your tongue as you drove by my baby stroller, oh, creepy, creepy, creepy old van man.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 9:44 pm   rating: 9  small thumbs up

  • #15   ramentastic

    If I was that handyman I’d just start wearing a hockey mask and standing on the front lawn of this notewriters house … just to make it really creepy. Possibly with weird looking tools.

    2nd note: team note writer.

    Mar 5, 2014 at 11:39 pm   rating: 25  small thumbs up

  • #16   KathT

    The grey van ‘message’ is unfortunately a photoshop gem.
    The text overlaps the ridge on the van and doesn’t change tone or shade.

    Mar 6, 2014 at 12:32 am   rating: 12  small thumbs up

    • #16.1   poopypants

      Somebody linked a link I can’t see, but the perspective on the letters does change a very small amount. Think Star Wars opening credits as they get far away.

      This is probably due to the fact that the body of the van is naturally curved a bit.

      Of course I could be wrong, I haven’t seen the pixels yet.

      Mar 9, 2014 at 11:21 am   rating: 2  small thumbs up

  • #17   Joe Bryant

    KathT – here’s another photo of the same van from a different angle. I suppose they could BOTH be photoshopped, but I think the balance of probability is that it’s real.

    Mar 6, 2014 at 4:51 am   rating: 10  small thumbs up

    • #17.1   Robin

      And reading the article associated with that link I am now team busy-body. His van wasn’t reported just for being a van by a school, it was reported because police were on the lookout for a similar van being used in attempted abductions.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 9:50 am   rating: 12  small thumbs up

    • #17.2   The Elf

      That does change the situation somewhat. When we had the Beltway Sniper killings, they were originally associated with a white box truck. Of course, it turned out they were in a blue sedan. Anyway, people with white box trucks and vans suddenly found themselves under high suspicion.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 10:15 am   rating: 5  small thumbs up

    • #17.3   Verity Brown

      Considering that L.A. police SHOT at vehicles that both did and didn’t resemble Dorner’s vehicle, the kind of paranoia that inspires busybodying isn’t just irritating; it’s potentially lethal for the innocent.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 10:59 am   rating: 20  small thumbs up

    • #17.4   The Elf

      That’s more about LA police and their training than about civilian reporting of vehicles resembling those in high profile felony cases.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 1:04 pm   rating: 9  small thumbs up

    • #17.5   assiveProgressive

      Decades ago, I was taking a walk around midnight in what I thought was my safe small town when I realized the same blue van had driven by me three times (there was no other traffic around). I tried hiding, but the guy parked the van, got out and was looking for me! After some evasive moves on my part and the fact I was so close to my home, I managed to slip into my apartment unnoticed, but it was the worst “”close call” of my life. Of course I didn’t get the license number. After that, for weeks, I would be on the lookout for blue vans (Ford, Chevy, can’t remember what it was now), and I realized there were a bazillion of them on the road. So my point is, I could see why people would be alarmed, but really you have to be way more specific if you are going to call the cops or alert the public.

      Mar 7, 2014 at 10:48 am   rating: 11  small thumbs up

    • #17.6   pooham

      Dang! That is so scary aP.

      Once when I was a teenager walking along a busy street at night I got approached by a naked man masturbating and grunting. He popped up from the area between the on-ramp to the freeway and the freeway when I was about to go on the overpass.

      Mar 7, 2014 at 1:34 pm   rating: 0  small thumbs up

    • #17.7   assiveProgressive

      Ewww, I hope a rat came out and chewed off his member

      Mar 7, 2014 at 10:20 pm   rating: 2  small thumbs up

    • #17.8   Poltergeist

      That poor rat, having to suffer through gonorrhea for the rest of its life.

      Mar 8, 2014 at 12:33 pm   rating: 4  small thumbs up

  • #18   warns

    I think the van PAN is my favorite yet. How high and mighty do you really have to be, writer one. Van pans ftw

    Mar 6, 2014 at 9:01 am   rating: 9  small thumbs up

    • #18.1   Raichu

      “Van Pan” – brand new high-tech silion-alloy cooking equipment that doubles as footwear!

      Mar 6, 2014 at 9:35 am   rating: 10  small thumbs up

    • #18.2   Lita bang

      Add some real sole to your cooking!

      No? Was that too…fishy?

      Mar 6, 2014 at 3:55 pm   rating: 5  small thumbs up

    • #18.3   assiveProgressive

      Van Pan, new bread de Mexico es muy bueno!

      Mar 7, 2014 at 10:51 am   rating: 2  small thumbs up

  • #19   Raichu

    Honest question: why do people like the big vans with no windows on the sides/back?

    Mar 6, 2014 at 9:36 am   rating: 8  small thumbs up

    • #19.1   Snicklefritz

      There are a couple of reasons – one is so no one can see your belongings. It also cuts down on the possible avenues that people can break into your van and it allows an unbroken area to attach rack space to the walls of the van for additional storage.

      Mar 6, 2014 at 9:49 am   rating: 27  small thumbs up

    • #19.2   The Elf

      My friend owned one. Why? Because it ran and the price was right. Hey, when you need transportation and you only have a little bit of money, you can’t really be choosy!

      Other than that, most people get them for some sort of work. They’re hauling equipment or something and need the cargo space. I’d wager good money that in both cases the original purchase was made for business reasons. They also tend to be cheaper than the same model with windows and seats, so why spend more than you have to?

      Mar 6, 2014 at 10:23 am   rating: 21  small thumbs up

    • #19.3   The Beast Among Us

      Because the A-Team was awesome!

      Mar 6, 2014 at 5:52 pm   rating: 21  small thumbs up

    • #19.4   The Elf

      Where else can I paint my Frank Frazetta-inspired mural of Conan The Barbarian fighting a Stygian necromancer if not on the side of a windowless van?

      Mar 7, 2014 at 6:58 am   rating: 15  small thumbs up

    • #19.5   kermit

      Not only that, but if you’re the person with the van, you have just practically bought yourself a lifetime supply of free booze. All your friends will ask you to help them move and/or transport furniture they’ve bought.

      Mar 7, 2014 at 8:52 am   rating: 11  small thumbs up

    • #19.6   assiveProgressive

      Right before minivans were invented, families would buy gigundous vans with captains chairs, windows with screens, etc. to haul their brood. My boss had one and one time gave me a ride home after a party where I had been drinking way too much. I vomited in it. Ha ha. He probably had shag carpeting. Now I realize why that guy hated me.

      Mar 7, 2014 at 10:54 am   rating: 8  small thumbs up

  • #20   K

    Back in high school, a friend of mine bought a windowless van like this off some guy he knew. It had a mattress and a ski mask in the back. (Original owner was a skier who would sometimes sleep in the van instead of driving into town.) My friend was working on some rigging for the the theater, and added duct tape and some rope.

    Mar 6, 2014 at 5:18 pm   rating: 20  small thumbs up

    • #20.1   The Elf

      Sure….. He was in “theater”……

      Mar 7, 2014 at 6:59 am   rating: 0  small thumbs up

    • #20.2   Lisa S.

      If he was the theater, it would have been gaffer’s tape. I call shenanigans on this story.

      Mar 7, 2014 at 9:09 am   rating: 3  small thumbs up

    • #20.3   Jami

      Nah Lisa, theatre people use more duct tape than Red Green.

      Mar 7, 2014 at 9:18 am   rating: 8  small thumbs up

    • #20.4   kermit

      Hey, don’t you besmirch Red Green! He’s the most famous Canadian engineer and everyman problem solver.

      Mar 7, 2014 at 10:02 am   rating: 5  small thumbs up

    • #20.5   The Beast Among Us

      Red Green also drives a windowless van.

      Mar 7, 2014 at 2:56 pm   rating: 4  small thumbs up

    • #20.6   Jami

      Who said I was besmirching him? I got many a theatre prop maker hooked on that show, in fact. All I had to do was mention that it was a show about a handyman who used a lot of duct tape and they were running to turn on PBS faster than a Loki fan-girl chases after Tom Hiddleson.

      Mar 7, 2014 at 10:55 pm   rating: 6  small thumbs up

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    Mar 7, 2014 at 10:14 pm   rating: 0  small thumbs up

    • #21.1   The Beast Among Us

      ^ What have you been smoking, boy?

      Mar 10, 2014 at 12:20 pm   rating: 7  small thumbs up

  • #22   assiveProgressive

    My plumber’s mother’s best friend makes $84 an hour typing ransom notes in a windowless brown van down by the river

    Mar 7, 2014 at 10:24 pm   rating: 23  small thumbs up

  • #23   emily

    Whoa. I worked with this guy at the library. He lives next to a school, and some lady walking her dogs called the cops on him because he had a “kidnapper van” parked in front of his house (by the school). He has lived there for years, and always had the same car. The police, per procedure, had to do a complete profile on him because of the complaint and he was pretty understandably upset. That note is not related to the incident either.

    Apr 11, 2014 at 12:54 am   rating: 3  small thumbs up

  • #24   emily

    Also his name is not jack, idk who the heck is wanting to claim credit for this… Jason works at the Hayden lake library in Hayden, Idaho.

    Apr 11, 2014 at 12:56 am   rating: 1  small thumbs up

    • #24.1   Lythande

      The two pictures are two separate incidents with the same theme. The first note is from Seattle, and the submitter was Jack, not the note-recipient.

      Apr 11, 2014 at 5:23 am   rating: 2  small thumbs up

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