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Chicago Dibs

Hey Readers!


For those of you reading who are not from Chicago, I just wanted to expand on an important aspect of Chicago culture. You may refer to it as “Dibs”.

No, not these.

[This author is not responsible for your craving of ice cream at this moment.]*

[The author is not responsible for your craving of ice cream at this moment.]*


Dibs as in “I called it so it’s mine!”

The phenomenon of “Chicago Dibs” has been around the 1990s (well…from what I know since I’m a 90s kid). I’ve seen this growing up and those of you from Chicago know exactly what I am talking about. Let me define it for those who do not know.

Chicago Dibs: (n.) “an act of saving a snow-shoveled parking spot for yourself, friend, or family member by using a chair, bucket, crate, city traffic cone, piece of wood, etc. to take the place of the car until it has returned to park in that spot again.”

Only in Chicago would we have a system of “finders’ keepers” for parking because our weather demands it. Our winters are the coldest and our blizzards are often the craziest. You would think because it’s a beautiful city we’d love snow so much.


But apparently not unless it looks like this guy.

It seems like Chicago might have a love/hate relationship with the winter. We have to go to extreme lengths to keep a parking space, but that’s just the system. Personally, it does make sense if you shoveled the snow for a parking that you can keep that parking. The reality is not all of us living in Chicago are fortunate enough to live somewhere that has a garage where we can keep our car completely snow-free. We might or might not be the only city that does this when winter caves in on us.

"I'm from the city in the Midwest, Best city in the whole wide wide world" -  Lupe Fiasco

“I’m from the city in the Midwest, Best city in the whole wide wide world”- Lupe Fiasco

The beauty of living in this wonderful city is that we do appreciate our seasons but maybe not every single thing about them. For example, winter snow looks perfect downtown around the Millenium Park Bean but the downside is the dirty snow or slush on our curbs and blocks. In addition to more traffic – trying to get downtown is a bit scary and horribly icy.

The point is “Chicago Dibs” keeps us in touch with our community. You might be wondering how but the answer is simple. As a society, we all have one common goal –  to survive through this weather. We might not have perfect communities where every single person on the block knows and talks to their neighbor then becomes friends, but we seem to not recognize that they are doing the same thing as us: shoveling snow to save a spot.

At times we help each other out, and at times we do not. At times we might not respect each other when it comes to matters of cars or driving or parking spots but that should be the least of our everyday worries.  We know we can be kind people and most of us are. It is 2015 and we still respect the system of “Chicago Dibs” therefore we still live in a humane, civil society that respects each other.

Just remember that we all have the opportunity to make a positive change! 😀  It is great to see neighbors helping someone who is stuck in the snow, or just in general people caring about one another and showing it through random acts of kindness. I strongly believe we were put on this earth to not only make the best of our own life but to help one another out – and this can be applied year-round. 🙂


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