Our parking places are ours, our place at the table is ours, even where we stand or walk in a particular area is our place to stand or walk. That’s why we’re puzzled when someone has taken our place. It doesn’t matter that many of the places we think of as exclusively ‘ours’ are in no way close to being ours in any way. The territorialism we display is innate and has more to do with comfort than with an actual need to assert ownership. We prefer comfort to discomfort and if our habit patterns are disturbed we feel discomfort, thus the acted out displeasure when we find we’ve been displaced, even if inadvertently and unknowingly. There are some who may deliberately occupy territory they know has been used by another for some considerable time and they may be expressing the fact that no one really does have a claim on any part of public or open private property. Although obnoxious, there is nothing inherently wrong with this behavior; though it does show a knowledge of human nature, but also seems merely mean and small-minded. It’s interesting that we truly are puzzled when a situation like this arises. We know there is no basis for our assumption but we viscerally know that most others have the same kinds of feelings and most others will respect the unspoken rules governing our ‘property.’ We all have a need to spread our influence out as widely as we are able, and it seems to me that another primary reason for this is the need for a bit of breathing room. We live such crowded lives that having little extra areas to call our own is a way to meet that need for space. A little extra does not hurt anyone and makes us feel better. Don’t you think we should take ‘our’ spaces when and where we can?