Valet Confessions

10 Apr

I now find myself living in an area in which valet parking is annoyingly complimentary due to the fact that you cannot park unless you valet. Valet

Even my youngest readers can remember a time when socialites and celebutants, such as Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, couldn’t get out of a vehicle without flashing their “lady” bits to the world.

It is only after being repeatedly subjected to valet parking that I can now understand the struggles of Paris Hilton. {cough} I’m sorry; did that sentence just formulate in my brain and come tumbling out of my mouth? Yes.  Yes it did.

I say “annoyingly complementary”, because I do not drive a luxury vehicle.  I drive a Honda.  Although I adore my reliable little vehicle, I do not enjoy waiting in line behind a Maserati only to see the look of utter disappointment on the face of the valet attendant when I hand him an actual car key instead of some futuristic-looking gadget.

Then there is the matter of exiting the vehicle.  Maybe it’s because I am petite? Or maybe I am just incapable of being sophisticated? But I cannot seem to gracefully exit a vehicle.  And, unfortunately, the valet attendant is always there to witness it.

Always watching.  Always judging.

I recently went to lunch with my luxury vehicle-driving sister who chose yet another valet-friendly restaurant. {Hurray! Let the valet-induced anxiety begin!}

Me: {On the windiest day of the year I wear a dress, because I hate myself.  Pull up behind a luxury vehicle. Feel inadequate. Valet opens my door}  “Uh… sorry.  Yup.  Just, um, just give me a second here.” {Attempt to exit vehicle like a BOSS.  Fail}

Valet: {Looks away; refusing to acknowledge my existence}

Me: {Am now overcome with the need to explain myself to the attendant who could care less} “Sorry about that.  It’s kind of difficult to get out of the car sometimes.  Especially in a dress! Because… you know” {Expecting valet to understand. HE clearly does not. Attempt to recover by continuing to explain myself} “I just don’t want to flash anyone! {Even though I suspect I just did.} That’s kind of my nightmare!”

Valet: {Staring at me with disdain}

Me: “Because… you know.  Britney?  And also, NO ONE needs to see that, if you know what I’m sayin’?”

Valet: {Has no idea what I’m “sayin’”}

Me: “Because I’m not quite “groomed” these days. You know?” {Why the @#$# did I just say that OUT LOUD?}

Valet: {Look of disdain turns to look of disgust}

Me: “Sorry! I have no idea why I just told you that!” {nervous laughter} “How awkward!” {Have now made situation far more awkward by acknowledging it. Throw my car key at him and run into restaurant}

I ran into the restaurant as if the comfort of my sister’s company and a glass of wine could save me.  It’s like a child who fears monsters under the bed covering their face with the blanket and feeling completely safe.  Except that at some point I would need to exit the restaurant and face the same valet attendant who would probably never forget me, my face or my vehicle for as long as he lives.

After several glasses of wine, I exited the restaurant with a look-if-you-dare-you-awful-valet-attendant-man-person-you attitude. And by that I mean that I cowered behind my sister as I handed over my ticket.

The same attendant pulled up with my vehicle and held the door open for me.  He did not look in my direction as I got into the car, nor did I attempt to explain my ridiculously awkward behavior any further.  I just shoved money in his general direction, jumped into the car most ungracefully (probably flashing everyone in the parking lot – again?), and sped off.

In the words of Kathy Bates in Waterboy, valet parking “is da devil”.

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