Thursday, March 11, 2010

I fought the law and the law won

Okay, here is the promised blog post about the speeding ticket.

Obviously, I did not "fight the law" ... although the officer who pulled me over did think I was pulling an O.J. Simpson - a la the infamous white bronco chase.

Picture this.

Busy mother is given the opportunity to go do some personal clothes shopping. Alone. No kids. No snacks or diapers or strollers to bring along. The freedom to try on clothes without attempting to keep children from crawling or peeking under the neighboring dressing room. Hasn't been shopping alone for clothes since ... well, I can't remember how long.

I take off in Chad's Honda Accord. No minivan, just me and the sporty coupe. I decide to take the back roads instead of 422 to get to Kohl's. It's a beautiful, sunny day after weeks on end of snow and freezing temps. I head north out of Phoenixville on 113, out into the country. The music is turned up and I am singing at the top of my lungs... Because for once I am listening to something that is not kiddie music! (Actually I think it is funny that I am listening to Christian praise music when I have a brush with the law ...). I was totally in my own little world. (I actually even remember that I was thinking about some friends of mine).

Anyhow, at some point I glance up in the rearview mirror and see flashing lights, so I slowly pull over and think - Hmm, I must have been driving too fast. Little did I know that the officer has been following me with his siren AND flashing lights for the last mile or so. Oops. When he comes to the window he is SERIOUSLY p.o.'ed at me. He didn't yell at me but let's just say that he was pretty darn "stern".

I honestly was totally confused at why he was so angry until he barks out "Did you really not hear my siren this whole time?"

Me: "What? How long have you been following me?"

Him: (Loudly) "Since Fillmore Street back there. I know you saw me. You were probably thinking 'Oh, $%#@*!' "

Me: "Officer, I am really sorry. I honestly didn't hear or see you. I guess I was listening to my music pretty loud."

Him: "Have you had any traffic violations in the past year?"

Me: "No."

Him: "Not ANY?" (did he not believe this? was my infraction really THAT bad?? I seriously have not had a ticket since my early 20's, and it's safe to say I am no longer anywhere near my early 20's.)

Me: "No."

Him: "License, registration and proof of insurance."

Me, as I am getting it out: "I am really so sorry. I really was not trying to ignore you."

He gives me a once over and heads back to his car.

At this point, I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Part of me wanted to cry because I had messed up my 'perfect' day out. And it makes me so uncomfortable when someone is angry with me (and having a police officer mad at you is kinda scary). I wondered what Chad was going to think, but I figured he would be cool about it. I was only going 40 in a 25, and it was truly a mistake. Have you ever tried to go 25 on a country road? It pretty much feels impossible.

But the bigger part of me was just cracking up inside, because I was picturing the headlines that could be written: "Harried mother of 3 arrested for attempting to elude police custody while running away from home ..."

I also was determined that my day was not going to be ruined.

So. When the officer came back to my window his demeanor had totally changed. I'm not sure why, except that perhaps as he looked up my info and ran my license through the system and gave it all a little thought, he realized I really don't fit the description of someone trying to outrun law enforcement. Also I think it's because it never pays to cop an attitude with a cop, and I almost fell on my face apologizing (and out of sheer embarrassment, truth be told!) By the end, he was actually almost making excuses for why I was speeding - "I know it's a nice day, and you are just out driving with the sunroof open for the first time this season, and you're getting a little 'mommy-alone time'... but please slow down. "

Thank you for understanding me and my psyche, Officer.

Of course ...I still got the ticket, although he charged me with a lesser offense than speeding so that I only have to pay the fine, and won't get points on my license.

However, I don't know if Chad is going to be so willing to send me out on my own again any time soon!! :)


nateandkatesmom said...

Ha, ha! I'm not laughing at you but the situation as you explained it was kind of funny. Glad he didn't give you the points. I think I've just been lucky I haven't been caught. I've been known to be in my own little world when I am in the car by myself. I guess I've just been lucky. You played it totally cool when you came home that day too. I would have never known!

Kaylee said...

That is an awesome story. :) You are such a rebel!!!

Brianne said...

Oh man, this gave me a good laugh!

Karen said...

Send me some of that music. I want to go do that too!! Nicely handled Amy!

Nichole said...

Amy... how are ya?
That was SO FUNNY to read... thanks for sharing that, and getting that off of your chest!

So, did you get to go shopping after all?

And YES, it is SO difficult to drive "the speed limit" on a country road, I can TOTALLY relate, just haven't gotten caught yet, dare I say!