The Ultimate Parking Lot Survival Guide

An Instructional Manual for the Bonds Wilson Parking Lot



 Thankfully, the return of senior early outs has tremendously relieved parking lot stress on A days. B days, however, are a different story. Honestly, having the entire student body exit the school building at 3:30 every B day and swarm into a contained area while competing with parent drivers and fellow students is very unproblematic and results in a super-functional, not-at-all hectic parking lot so I’m not quite sure why you clicked on this article.


Wait, you DO find the Bonds Wilson campus parking lot dysfunctional and hectic?? Oh. 


No worries, I got you. Today, I proudly present… The Ultimate Parking Lot Survival Guide.

1. Jaywalk

Ashleigh Smith (12) and Marianna Folz (12) look on as jaywalking occurs

Student drivers (as well as parents) love the extra challenge of navigating jaywalkers. Understandably, it may be difficult to locate one of the many clearly marked, usually managed by stop-sign-wielding-teachers crosswalks, so really, jaywalking is your only option. To level up, jaywalk at the slowest walking speed you can manage. Drivers in the Bond Wilson parking lot love pedestrians who cross high traffic areas at a slow crawl!


2. Go on your phone

If you’re not prioritizing Powerschool over personal safety then you’re doing it wrong.

After taking into account all the moving parts of the parking lot (jaywalking students, aggressive parents, teachers wildly waving stop signs) you will probably feel overwhelmed. To distract yourself, take a brain break by going on your phone. This is a great option for drivers as well as walkers. Being on your phone will allow you to regroup and take a mental break from the strain required to focus on navigating the parking lot. To level up, combine this with tip #1- resulting in an effective “jaywalking while on phone,” a true thrill if you cross paths with a “driver on phone” situation. 


3. Sand your tires

Do you have a grip on the parking lot, or does the parking lot have a grip on you? Most likely the latter. Solve this issue by removing the traction from your tires.  An easy DIY you can complete with just an extra hour of free time, the return on this investment is phenomenal. Post-sanding your tires, you genuinely will not be able to stop once you pull out of your parking spot, therefore maximizing your ability to exit the parking lot quickly.


4. Abandon all decorum

Literally a Hunger Games arena. Basic humanity is optional.

Our parking lot in the afternoon is basically equivalent to a Hunger Games arena. Therefore, adopt a survivalist mindset and go from there. You will probably need to resort to animalistic tendencies. This could include cutting others off, driving in an egregiously aggressive manner, or even hitting other drivers and students. Just follow your feral instincts.


Student Submitted Tips:

Jenna Johnson (12) recommends that students put their backpacks in “sports mode” to run to their cars faster. Jenna says, “If you have a strap [on your backpack] use it. Sports mode will help you go ten times faster.”

Jenna Johnson (12) in sports mode in preparation for the school-wide 3:30 release bell.

According to Thomas Hamilton (11), “You gotta act like you’re gonna run into someone. It’s like a big game of chicken, someone has to back down.” Considering Thomas drives a massive pickup truck, I understand why this strategy is effective. Drivers of smaller cars- decide if this is a risk you are willing to take.


Student Perspectives:

A fresh transfer from Oceanside, Sutton Bates (11) parks in the old gravel lot and is spared from the brunt of afternoon hectic-ness, saying “My parking spot is good. It takes me like a minute to get out of the parking lot.”

Sutton confirms that the newly added egress is successfully mitigating afternoon traffic in the old gravel lot.

Chase Broadway (9) speaks from her experience carpooling with Bea Wilson (12), saying “trying to leave the parking lot is absolute chaos. It has definitely gotten better since the seniors have started leaving earlier, but some days it still takes us longer to get out of the parking lot than it does to get home. I don’t have any horror stories necessarily, but sometimes I wonder if people just don’t have common sense when trying to get out of there.”

Gregory Fletcher (9)


Gregory Fletcher (9) bikes to and from school each day, riding about a mile in each direction. Gregory (who I have always observed to be one of the most conscientious vehicle operators and pedestrians in the school area) can usually be spotted demonstrating alertness at the traffic scene and politely waving when crossing high traffic areas. Consistent with his actions, Gregory maintains a positive outlook, describing the parking lot as “Fine. Sometimes people don’t let you go in and you have to wait a while to turn but besides that it’s pretty good.”


That’s a wrap, Raptors! Best of luck on your own parking lot journey, or if you ride the bus, congratulations on being spared from this torturous labyrinth (although, depending on your outlook, the bus experience may be a different type of hellfire). Regardless, go forth with confidence, and, as always, go Raptors!