I wrote this a couple of years ago. It’s a fictional story but something very much like this did happen to me in the late ‘90’s in Colorado. Same car, I was speeding. I was testing the car after a wash and shop visit, and I didn’t have my license when I got pulled over. I was wearing sweatpants, not boxers. I did get a ticket and a court summons and, while he never said so, the officer who wrote the ticket didn’t show up at traffic court so the ticket was dismissed. And, yes, he did ask about my car and we talked for a little while. Not the first time that’s happened. (Once in Georgia, the ticketing officer let me use the laser speed gun while we chatted about the car and he wrote me a “warning!”)
So, the Porsche was in the shop last week and they just dropped it off. They washed it of course. It was kind of a boring day. I had been lying around in my boxers and a tee shirt doing nothing, and from the couch, through the window, sitting out front, the car looked so shiny and nice. I thought I’d just put in the garage. I got in and I sat down and the seat felt so natural, like always. I heard myself making engine noises and then I remembered I had the keys, you know, it’s my car. It’s Saturday, the sun is shining. I’ll go for a drive, I thought. Just around the neighborhood.
Well then, what do you know? I got pulled over. Okay, okay, I was going fast, I think like 115 in a 65, I was watching the tach, listening to the engine, the window was down, and the air was like fast, you know.
Anyway, the cop comes up with all this cop attitude and he’s like,
“Um, good evening sir, I hate to trouble you, but would you know why I asked you to pull over this evening?”
In my head I was like, what, yeah, I was going kind of fast, is that a problem? Police state bullshit.
“Yes, officer, I apologize, I now realize I may have exceeded the speed limit and that was irresponsible.”
Again, cop with all of this authority, the man coming down on me, he’s all like,
“Sir, yes, I’m sure it was unintentional, but it is my responsibility as an officer of the peace to occasionally remind citizens of their own responsibilities while on the road.”
Yeah. Big man. Chip on his shoulder and all that.
“Sir, I deeply regret it but since I pulled you over, I have to issue some sort of citation. The laser said that you were going about 110 when I saw you…”
My ass 110, at least 115, lying pig.
“… but as we both know you couldn’t possibly have intended to go that fast so I’m going to issue the citation for 74 miles per hour. You’ll have to pay a small fine but your insurance won’t go up. May I see your license and registration?”
Aaaaayaaaa – I’m still in my boxers. No license. Start the car, I can be a mile away before he knows what happened.
“Oh, goodness officer, you won’t believe this, I seem to have left my driver’s license in my golf shorts at the house. Please accept my sincerest apology. I do have a Facebook photo of me and the car at the Grand Canyon on my phone if that helps.”
Here it comes, out of the car, face down on the ground, police jackboot pressed into my lower back. I’ll sue. I’ll sue the whole state. Don’t touch me pig!
“Sir, that is troubling. I tell you what. You seem like a normal sort of guy with good taste in cars. We both know this was an accident, so if you’ll just tell me your name and address, I’ll look up your license information later. By the way, what year is your Porsche?”
So, this is it. Surveillance state. Look it up man. You got all my info. Get on the supercomputer. Dig in. What did I have for breakfast mother fucker?
“It’s an ’83, officer. Air cooled.”
Unbelievable. Is this extortion? Corrupt cops. Pay up or be sucked into the bureaucracy. Authority state shit.
“It’s a fine car. Please be careful out there. Hey, and sorry about the ticket. I tell you what, if you go to court, I probably won’t even show up to support it so everything will get dismissed.”
I’ll write my congressman. Nobody should have this kind of power over me. This is America god dammit.
“Thank you, officer. That’s very kind. Have a nice day and be safe.”
I haven’t been pulled over that often but when I have there have been conversations like this and it makes me think… What if I was DWB instead of DWW? There is no doubt that these encounters could have been much, much worse. (And that life is so fucked up…)