My Parking Ticket, Pull Tabs, and Pinball Adventure

It dawned on me this afternoon that I had to pay a parking ticket . . . by this afternoon. I checked the ticket, issued by the Minneapolis Park Board, and found out that they didn’t have online payments. This was at 3:30 and their headquarters closes at 4:30, so I figured mailing it in probably wouldn’t cut it.

So I headed North on West River Road, worked my way around the section closed due to the 35W bridge collapse, and continued up West River Road to Broadway. The HQ is just North of Broadway on W River Road by Broadway Pizza.

While working my way upstream, I noticed that I didn’t have $35 cash. Not knowing whether they’d accept credit cards, I figured I should stop on the way to get some cash. I figured I’d cruise over to the SuperAmerica at University and Broadway to hit the money spitter.

However, it turns out that the Broadway bridge is closed:

Broadway Bridge Closed

So, I turned West on Broadway in search of an ATM. And what did I find, but BJ’s:

BJ's Girls Topless Review

I walked in and diverted my eyes from the stage. The palace was packed. My eyes weren’t adjusted to the dark light, which made it tough to figure out how to insert my debit card into the ATM machine. Surprisingly, the ATM only charged $2 for the transaction.

While waiting for the 300 baud modem to verify my funds, I noticed I was standing next to their pull tab booth. I figured that justified breaking one of the $20’s so I would have correct change for the Park Board. So I picked up 5 $1 tabs. I was in a hurry at this point, so waited to pull them until after I went to:

Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board

After paying my ticket, I took 10 seconds to check out this piece of art. Something about string sticking into the air just doesn’t make sense to me:

Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board

Then I pulled my pull tabs in the parking lot of the park board and found a winner:

Winning Pulltab

$2 richer, it was back to BJ’s to cash in. However, when I got back (again, diverting my eyes) the pull tab lady was on a potty break. With time to kill, I decided to throw down on Playboy Pinball:

Playboy Pinball

I was in a total groove, riding my paid parking ticket pull tab winner high. I owned that game. However, at one point, a Wal-Mart greeter style waitress stopped by to offer me a beer. Apparently, they expect you to buy drinks at this place since there is no cover. This caused some stress since I was up in the bumpers at the time. I barked for an MGD, which arrived a couple minutes later in a can for $2.75. Her timing couldn’t have been worse and multi-ball was just starting. NEVER interrupt a guy during multi-ball!

Somehow, I managed to hold things together – adrenaline was high – and dig a BJ’s ATM $20 out of my pocket without losing it.

I popped the machine on the second ball, got cocky, then drained the 3rd ball in seconds. I could never figure out how to time the left flipper to hit the Extra Ball ramp at the right time. I blame the Wal-Mart greeter.

I left the free credit for a future BJ’s patron to enjoy, then traded in my $2 tab for a $2 Wild Stallions tab. That went bust:

Total score:

Park Board: $35
BJ’s: $2 ATM Fee, $3.75 MGD can with tip, $0.75 pin ball game, and $5 in pull tabs = $11.50

Lesson learned: BJ’s is 1/3 the cost and 3 times the fun as a parking ticket . . . as long as you divert your eyes.

4 thoughts on “My Parking Ticket, Pull Tabs, and Pinball Adventure”

  1. It’s like a children’s book story, complete with pictures and a moral of the story…but for adults. Is this available in a flip-book version?

    Side note….”BJ”s? The owner must be Bob Jacobs, Bill Johnson, or something like that….

  2. This whole blog entry smells like an elaborate cover. “Honey, I promise, I wasn’t looking. I went into BJ’s because of my parking ticket…” Right Ed, we’re not buying it, but for your sake I hope your wife does 🙂

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