Stalking is Not a Good Business Strategy

This weekend, I was driving through parking lot. I had an important mission ahead of me – procure and eat Vietnamese food.

I was driving past a pickup truck in a parking lot when one of the men in the passenger seat rolled down the window and motioned for me to do the same. I nervously drove past him.  Even though I had Boyfriend sitting next to me, I have learned not to roll down windows when strangers ask.  Besides, there were plenty of cars behind me; if there was an emergency, the men in the truck had other resources besides me.

I drove farther down the parking lot and settled on a spot outside of the Vietnamese restaurant.  As I unlatched my seat belt, I noticed the pickup truck slowly pulling up beside me.  “Did they follow us?” I asked incredulously as the driver rolled down his window.

Boyfriend calmly recommended that I move to another spot.  As we both gave the truck occupants annoyed looks, I noted a sign on the truck that immediately escalated my irritation into anger.

Pop-a-Dent, it said. And suddenly, it all made sense.

It’s important that I tell you all that both sides of my truck are dented from two separate parking garage incidents (basically, my spacial perception sucks and I scraped my truck against columns). And by “dented,” I mean very noticeable large dents.  The paint job around each side had been damaged by the incidents.

The truck has gotten more questions than my constant change of hair color has.  Many times, I’ve had to force a smile on my face as a well-meaning coworker asks, “…what happened to your truck?” I get tired of explaining it.  While I can make fun of myself about it and laugh it off, I understandably get irritated after getting teased about it all the time.  Several years ago, when I was in an HEB parking lot, a man walked up to me, handing me a business card. It was for a body shop.

For some reason, that incident didn’t irk me as much as a truck following me around, desperate for my business.  Did you not get the hint the first time I ignored your request? I looked up the business on Yelp (obviously, I changed its name), and it received horrible reviews.  Typical.  If you have to resort to stalking women in a parking lot for business, I’m going to venture a guess and say that it wasn’t so hot to begin with.


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