I received my driver’s licence at 14 years of age. I have had only one ticket in my life — one. This is the story of that ticket:
Last Thanksgiving I moved into this dump … uhm, lovely home with considerable personality. I moved on purpose. I decided I would rather have a less upscale address and more creature comforts — like internet, cable, and drunken neighbors. For the most part I am comfortable and, yes, my house is safe.
Moving — the word strikes fear into the soul of every packrat, and I am no exception. I was exhausted long before everything was boxed and hauled, even though I have some wonderful friends with kind hearts and strong muscles. Just the same, there I was down to the wire, cleaning the old place, dragging out the last of the stuff and butt-draggin tired — and the neighbor jerk parked in my spot, leaving me to park in his; but if I parked in his spot I would have at least five feet further I would have to lug the last of the boxes — unless, of course, I parked backward. So, logically, I parked backward.
After lugging the last box to my trunk and dropping exhausted into the driver’s seat, I noticed a little yellow slip on the windshield. Lovely. A $275 parking ticket for facing south bound in the north bound lane.
Several days later I took myself down to the courthouse and paid 60% of the ticket. The remainder was due in 30 days.
The time has come to renew my car registration. Yesterday I opened my glove box to gather my paperwork together — and found the receipt for that half-paid ticket. I stared at it in horror for several minutes, grabbed my cell phone and dialed the number on the bottom of the faded page.
I listen to the phone ring. Officer Really Niceguy answers. I tell him I have an unpaid ticket. He asks my name and for the ticket number, then puts me on hold. I wait two life times for him to come back to the phone and say, “Ma’am, there’s a warrent out for your arrest.”
Oh, dear saints! I left my ex-husband so I’d never have to hear those words. The officer immediately realized I was distressed. (I think it was the hysterical laughter.) He said, “It’s not like you’d really be arrested. The amount you owe is too small. Just come in and pay the balance of the ticket and the fine. We haven’t cancelled your driver’s license or the registration on your car. This is a simple fix.”
I told Officer Really Niceguy I’d be right there — and I drove straight to the courthouse — where I paid the balance of my ticket and a tiny, two hundred dollar fine.
Now I’m going to have to break another law. Prepare yourself for the headlines: Fifth Grade Teacher Extorts Students for Lunch Money.