You’ve seen them, the people who leave their bikes, kickstandless, floating in space except for the U-lock anchoring it to the bike rack, and the adjacent bicycles, barely keeping them from following the natural inclinations of the world and crashing to the ground.
It’s been a while since I’ve really had any notable parking frustrations, but it’s seeming to become worse again recently, and I’ve had maybe half a dozen times this month where someone had parked their bike leaning against mine, in such a way that if I moved mine at all, their bike would just crash to the ground. In this photo, the other bike isn’t even touching the bike rack at all, and the U-lock placed so that it will slide right down the pole as the bike falls.
So, in general, when parking, let’s all just give a few seconds pause to think about whether what we’re doing is rational or not. If you have a kickstand, park a couple inches away from the rack so that the other person can easily use the other side. If you don’t have a kickstand, try to position your bike so that it’s leaning on the bike rack, not on the bikes next to it, or is at least locked in such a way that the lock will hold the bike up. If you’re parking at one of those wavy racks, don’t park longwise across the whole rack and take up all the parking spots, and again, lock your bike in such a way that it’s not going to easily fall over if someone looks at it funny. If you have to move someone’s bike to get yours into or away from the rack, put it back where it was, and don’t leave it hanging haphazardly, if you can help it.
Just a few seconds thought will prevent a lot of frustration, and may even prevent your bike getting beat up from falling over.