Parking — and thinking — within the lines

Parking — and thinking — within the lines

Photos via Hebron Bad Parking

*Name has been changed for anonymity 


What started out as a joke among a group of friends has turned into a humorous topic that has caught the attention of students and staff. The Hebron Bad Parking Instagram account features bad parking jobs seen on campus lots. 

Inspired by a TikTok video that said “this is your sign to make a bad parking account for your school,” three students created an account for Hebron. Hebron Bad Parking posts student submissions of bad parking photos from the student and teacher parking lot. 

“[The other account owner] who sent us the TikTok video had no intention of us actually making the account [for our school],” Mia* said. “But I said ‘Yes, let’s do it.’ So I made the account and shared the [credentials], and that’s how it started.”

Hebron Bad Parking has over 1,000 followers and 113 posts; the account has grown rapidly since it was started on Oct. 4. They receive about three-to-five submissions a day from students, where they feature the submitted photos on their Instagram feed and stories.

Senior Carolin Yoo had her car featured on the account when her friend submitted a photo of her bad parking to the account.

Photo via Hebron Bad Parking

“The parking [in the photo] is not a good representation of how good of a driver I am,” Yoo said. “I was going to leave within the next five minutes, and was nervous since I had an audience [of band members watching me park].”

Although the account is meant to hold people accountable and may embarrass some, Yoo says the posts provided a topic to joke about.

“[The posts] are hilarious; it’s something that we can all laugh at together,” Yoo said.” In comparison to other Hebron accounts, it’s able to bring people together rather than putting people against each other, despite the fact that it [makes fun] of people’s bad parking.”

With the account growing rapidly, the account owners said they post to get drivers to be more self-aware of their parking. 

“We are holding people accountable since there are people who park and drive bad,” Mia* said. “Through our account, people [make a greater effort] to park better to [avoid] getting [their car] posted on our account.”

Posts from the teachers’ parking lot get just as much attention, if not more. After one of her students showed her the account, science department head Julie Cone saw a picture featuring her car. 

Photo via Hebron Bad Parking

“I do have a reason for the way I park,” Cone said. “I’ve seen many students and parents parked in between mine and [science teacher] Dr. [Kathleen] Holley’s car, who parks [in the handicapped spot] next to mine. Dr. Holley and I started purposefully parking that way in order to keep people from parking in between [the handicapped spots]. We are not trying to keep people from accessing the building; we are trying to keep people from parking illegally.” 

As students often leave their opinions on the posts that feature teachers’ parking, Cone says that she has learned not to care about unnecessary negativity.

“I really am beyond worrying about what people think,” Cone said. “It’s so easy to think about [rude people]. But sometimes, I have to sit down and think about why I would let it affect me. If you’re paying attention to all of the gossips in the world, you’re really going to have a bad life. It’s something that you have to learn to ignore.”

Drivers, regardless of skill, are expected to park properly not only for themselves, but for the drivers who park near them. Students who don’t park their cars risk having their vehicles damaged. The account owners said they have seen the self-awareness of student drivers and their parking grow — ultimately creating a safer driving environment on campus. 

“When we post, [our followers] get scared,” Mia* said. “This account is for fun, [but] people actually try to park [better] now. I know of [several students] getting out of their cars to look [at their parking] — something [those students] wouldn’t normally do.”