Posts Tagged ‘police’

Low Rider

June 1, 2013

Thursday May 30th, 2013 – Libertyville, IL

   Life is a continuing series of ups and downs. I happen to be stuck in a down right now, but I’ve been here plenty of times before so it’s nothing new. Although it’s never pleasant, the only thing to do is wait it out and try to weather the storm as well as possible. Sooner or later, it will switch.

   I’ve given up on trying to figure out a logical reason, because I don’t think one exists. I think it boils down to a planetary vibe, or something bigger than all of us. Maybe it’s moonbeams or star dust or cosmic dust from Uranus, but some days or longer periods of time are better than others.

   Why is it one day I’ll wake up and everything falls into place? I hit all the green lights in traffic and I go to the restaurant and get the cutie pie waitress to flirt with rather than the 300 lb. sea hag with stale perfume that smells like her sump pump went out. On those days, nothing goes wrong.

   Then, other days I can tell it’s going to be exactly the opposite. I get behind some nose picking Neanderthal drooling into his cell phone in the left lane of traffic who directly causes me to miss one green light while he slides through, leaving me steaming at the red light unable to retaliate.

   That in turn throws me off course and I end up hitting every other red light the rest of the entire day, and then getting not only the ugliest waitress at the restaurant but the newly paroled first day on the job cook with trench mouth and pink eye that sneezes on my omelet. I guess that wouldn’t be so bad, but I’d ordered a chef’s salad. When I’m out of the groove, it doesn’t matter what I do.

   Right now, I’m out of the groove. Sometimes it last for days, sometimes for weeks. Sometimes it’s longer than that. I was in a really good groove just a few weeks ago, but that’s gone now. I’m not sure exactly when the switch happened, but I know it did. I wish I could identify the process.

   One thing that’s really been an annoying issue of late is traffic problems. I got a speeding ticket in January that’s been a festering dingle berry since it happened. First, the fine was $250, and the gig I was going to in Eau Claire, WI paid $200. I was already in the hole, but the rental car I was driving cost me even more. Then I went to fight it in court, and they misfiled all my paper work.

   I eventually paid the ticket after finding out they screwed up the filing, but last week I received a notice from the state saying my driver’s license is suspended. That’s another fine I had to come up with, and the torture is never ending. I’ve never had my license suspended in my life until this annoying little hiccup, but now I’m a criminal because some smug cop had to play Dirty Harry.

   Normally I respect the police, but that guy had a bug up his ass as he got out of his car. I don’t know what his problem was that day, but he sure took it out on me. I could tell when he climbed out of his car I was going to get a ticket by the way he goose stepped to mine. I was out of luck.

   Other days, I’m able to make the cop laugh or just get off with a warning. I’ll admit I’ve gotten off completely several times when I probably should have gotten pinched, but for reasons I can’t identify I slid through the cracks. Was it because I was a nice guy? Caucasian? Without any past criminal record? It could be a combination of all of those things, but I can’t put my finger on it.

   Sometimes things work out, and sometimes they don’t. It doesn’t feel like I am doing anything different, but there sure are different results. Right now I’m on a low, and try as I might I haven’t the first hint of a clue as to how to change that. If I could, I would. But I can’t. I’ll have to wait.


Speed Demons

February 20, 2013

Monday February 18th, 2013 – Black River Falls, WI

   What is it with me and speeding tickets lately? It’s only been in the last few years, but I’ve had way more than I’ve had in the previous twenty plus years combined and I can’t figure it out. As I rapidly approach codgerhood, one would assume that would be one area of life that would ease.

In my twenties and thirties when I was really banging out the miles I don’t recall getting tickets at all. I may have had oodles of other problems to deal with in life then, but that was never one of them. In fact, if nothing else I had a reputation of talking my way out of any traffic consequences whenever I got pulled over, and it drove my friends crazy. I guess I wasn’t a threat to the police.

I’ve always been able to talk to cops without fear. Part of the reason for that is my grandfather used to make me ask policemen for directions when we’d go for walks when I was a kid. He had the foresight to pretend we were ‘lost’, and made me give the policeman our address and ask him to tell us how to get home. How brilliant was that? I hope every parent of young kids steals that.

I got snagged in a speed trap last spring that was a total sham, and I’m still feeling the sting of that one on my insurance. The speed limit went from 55 to 35 in about half a block, and I wasn’t the only one who fell for it. It was a money machine for the tiny town, and I guess it was just my turn. I tried fighting it, but in the end I ended up paying to just make it all go away. What a mess.

This latest one happened just last month as I was driving in a rental car to a gig in Eau Claire, WI. I was passing a semi to avoid getting stones kicked up from one of the 18 wheels and having to pay for a cracked windshield. It didn’t help my cause any that the rental car had Illinois plates.

I could tell by the way the trooper goose stepped out of his car that I was in for a ticket before he even got to my window. I felt his ominous vibe, and didn’t try to fight it or talk my way out of it. I tried to put it out of my mind and move on, and I did exactly that. I put it out of my mind so well in fact that I totally forgot about it. Today was my day in court and I needed to take action.

It was my own fault, and I blame nobody else. I’m sure I’m not the only idiot in the history of traffic violations in small towns that has faced this situation, so I sucked it up and decided to get in my car after The Mothership Connection radio show ended at midnight and drive to the town of Black River Falls, WI to face my consequences. Court was scheduled for 9am and I was there.

If I could get any part of the $250 fine lowered or any points shaved off, it would be worth this hassle. Two tickets in one year can’t be good for insurance purposes, even at my approaching old geezerly age. It’s not like I’m a habitual criminal, but for whatever reason I’m getting targeted of late. I guess it’s the law of averages, as I’ve driven about ten times more than most other drivers.

They had me fill out a form pleading not guilty, and I was told that the District Attorney would contact me within a few weeks via mail. I have no idea what to expect, but prudence tells me I’ll be forking out cash at that point. Hopefully my effort will pay off, but who knows? It would sure be nice to catch a break, but the cosmos seems to have other plans. I’ll cross my fingers and wait.