Fact: 75 mph in a 60 mph zone is too fast.
Fact: Lady cops will not let you off, no matter what, but especially not if you say something stupid.
Fact: I am that. girl. who thinks of all the right things to say only after the time has come and gone to say them, and only after I said something stupid.
Fact: I got a ticket on Thursday. Apparently everyone knew (except me) that if you go even 1 lousy mph too fast on this stretch of road you'll get pulled over and written up a "traffic citation."
Definition of a Traffic Citation: Lady Cop's whack at sounding smart in order to make you, driver, feel even more stupid as all the drivers in the cars you just impatiently passed whiz by and laugh at you.
I saw her turn around and come to get me. I should've pulled over the moment I saw her turn around. Why bother make her chase me down with her stupid blinking lights? I could've done her a favor, maybe she'd have done me one then. But there was a tiny spark of hope left in my heart.. maybe it wasn't me she was after.
Alas, after what felt like an eternity, she turned on those stupid blinking lights and I immediately groaned and pulled over, carefully turning on my clicker.
"We're going to meet a real live cop today, kids!" I tried to make light of the situation. We'd already been driving for two to two-and-a-half hours.. the kids were as ready to be done with the trip as I was.
"Why?" asked Sunshine, bluntly.
"Well, Mommy was going too fast and the cop is going to give mommy a ticket."
I continued explaining what a ticket was, etc, etc, as I reached into my wallet to pull out my ID, and into the glove box to get the insurance and registration. And then I sat and waited, looking out the window waiting for the cop to come and embarrass me.
I startled at the sound of the knock.. she'd come to the passenger side. I silently wished I'd packed the passenger seat too full to open the window as I searched for the right button to roll it down. I handed her my papers before she even had time to say "hello."
And then. AND THEN she told me I was going too fast and actually asked me why!!!!!!
This was where I faltered.
"Well Lady Cop, I don't particularly like driving and I was obviously trying to get to my destination sooner, so as to reduce my time on the road!" I could've said.
"Lady Cop, I've got 3 kids and a dog back here. Wouldn't you be hurrying too?" I should've said.
"Lady Cop, I know you don't have anywhere to be right now, or anything to do but make my day more miserable, but I actually have somewhere to be right now. So rather than ask me stupid questions to which you don't really want to know the answers, would you mind just giving me my ticket and letting me go?" I could've sassed.
"Lady Cop, if you'd have kept driving, instead of pulling me over, you'd have seen the school bus I was stuck behind for 10 miles and the very long line of cars behind it. I legally passed him and decided to make up some time."
"Lady Cop, if you'd have kept driving, instead of pulling me over, you'd have seen the school bus I was stuck behind for 10 miles and the very long line of cars behind it. I legally passed him and simply forgot to turn my cruise control back on."
She's asking me why I was going so fast?! I was stunned. I paused. I couldn't think of ANYTHING.. not even the best truth!
"Uh.. well I'm hoping to find a place with coffee.." I stuttered, "Because I'm really tired.." I moaned, laying my head down on the wheel, wishing I had an extra foot to stick in my mouth. Oh no.. did I really just say that?! Anything but that!
At least I stumped her for a moment. The response was so stupid it was contagious. She didn't say anything for the moment and then went on with the next thing I couldn't believe...
"Well, you were going too fast for me to issue you a warning..." she spat. (She teased me with this possible truth a few times during our little "talk.")
A warning? I could've said something witty here too... like..
"Oh really? How fast would that have been? You know.. for next time."
"Lady Cop, you wouldn't have bothered pulling me over if you could have issued me a warning. Let's face it, that's not your style. You're here to write tickets, and that's it."
I could've tried this one..
"Lady Cop, we both know that's not true. You cops can fudge anything on there you want to, and you do it all the time. You get to choose if you want to let me off with a warning.. but I was speeding with a car-full of kids. Of course you don't want to spare me and let me go. You're probably a mom too and hate that parents like me put ourselves and our children at risk by speeding. You want to make me sorry for what I did, not give me an excuse to do it again. Who cares if I could've bought more food or diapers for my children with the money I'm about to spend in your county paying your salary. Don't sit here and tell me you can't let me off with a warning, like it's something you can't control. Tell the truth. You don't want to and so you won't."
I was still too stupefied by the first words that'd come out of my mouth, so I chose not to say anything at all for the rest of her scolding. She told me it would take awhile for her to write out my "citation" and left me there, where I finally cried. Poetically enough, it started raining too, so I closed the window.
I think I sat there 20 minutes before she finally came back and told me all the nonsense about my brand new traffic citation. It was her explanation of the charges that confused me..
"You were going 15 mph over, and that's a 4-point ticket," she pointed out. "It's $132 for [insert insulting cop explanation here] which is $32 for [insert more insulting cop explanation here] and $2.50 for DNA ---" DNA?! What the heck is that?! I have my own! Why are you charging me for that?
Seriously... it was like a cell phone bill.. all these extra hidden fees. Who knew? My total bill ended up being about $170. Do you know how many diapers I could've bought for $170?!
She told me about how I get my points reduced by two if I pay it, and if I don't she showed me when and where I'd have to be at court. I should've asked..
"So.. what's the benefit of going to court, other than seeing your lovely face again?"
.. but I didn't. That was probably smart.
She handed me my shiny new not-golden-win-a-trip-to-Willy-Wonka's-Chocolate-Factory ticket and told me to have a safe trip, or something. I began rolling up the window before she'd turned away, to show her how mad I was.. you know.. because she would care.. because Lady Cop had a heart. Not.
(In hindsight, I wish I'd had my phone ready to take a picture of her before she left. If she would've asked why I snapped a photo of her, I would've told her I blogged and given her my blog address. I'd have told her I was about to make her famous as the meanest Lady Cop ever. Oh well.)
As Lady Cop was walking away, my phone rang. It was my father-in-law. We were on our way to see him, by the way.
"Hey, whatcha doin'?" he inquired.
"Just got a ticket!" I blubbered... crumpling up my ticket and throwing it across the car like the trash it was. I flicked my clicker on, waited for remaining traffic to pass, and pulled back onto the road.. dreading the remaining three hours of my drive.
And here begins all the ridiculing from my friends and family.. the laughter at my ticket location.. because everyone knows you'll get a ticket if you even hint at speeding there.. except me, of course. Oh well. Better luck next time.
Haha! Just kidding, Mom. About next time, I mean.