Sunday, November 22, 2009

Pulled Over Going 40 Miles Per Hour

We all get speeding tickets at one time or another, and they suck. Does this mean we’re all speeders? Now, it means that speed traps have gotten more tricky and ridiculous to raise more money. The old cop joke: “Do cops have ticket quotas?” “I don’t have a quota, I can write as many tickets as I want”

I was taking Bella to school the way I’ve always gone for four years. I had my brother with me in the car and we were going to the airport afterwards. Nothing out of the ordinary. Right before Bella’s school is a high school that I pass every day. But this day I didn’t pass it.

I was stopped for the light outside the entrance to the high school and one of the fattest policemen I had ever seen waddled into traffic and told the guy in front of me and myself to pull over. Turns out he hadn’t tagged the guy in front of me, he just needed him to pull over to get to me. But then they started having a conversation and then the cop put his hand on his gun. Whoa, what’s going on? For a second I got a little frightened. I realized since this porky here obviously couldn’t run anyone down, he may be a pretty good shot to compensate for it. I thought maybe he had a desk job, but I don’t know if he would fit. At some point you have to be in shape to get through the Police Academy, right? So why don’t they retest periodically, or at least set a weight limit to that of a small building? But whatever the conversation was about, it ended and the other dude was on his way, scott-free.

The corpulent cop then explained to me I had been going 40 in a 40 zone, but since there are children present the speed limit was 25. What?! First of all, this is a HIGH SCHOOL. Some of these “kids” could be 18. Second, there is no school zone sign. I later learned it’s a block away in the other direction, so you would only see it if you were going a different way than I drove every day.

I looked at him write up my ticket on his motorcycle and thought OMG, this is the guy from that Guinness Book of World Records picture with the twins on the scooters.

So this leviathan in jack boots waddled back to my car and gave me my ticket. This was complete bullshit, and I saw he was pulling over three cars at a time all week because it was a trick speed trap. I tried to flash my lights on the way back to warn other drivers but I’m not sure if it helped. I didn’t say anything because I was so angry (not even a thank you!) and you certainly don’t want to make it worse. The typical responses all came to mind: “Why don’t you catch some real criminals? Try patrolling INSIDE the high school for a change. Have you tried Slimfast?” But I kept them to myself.

I was soon back on my way and dropped Bella off and explained what a ticket was. She was a bit confused. “A GOOD ticket gets you into Disneyland. A BAD ticket a fat policeman gives you for driving too fast. So there are different kinds of tickets”

Now LA has this system where they make it almost impossible and a huge hassle to not only fight a ticket but actually pay one. The inflatable cop lied and said “You’ll get the ticket in the mail and it will tell you how much you owe.” I knew that was bullshit from getting a ticket a few years back. That never happens. They never mail you anything so they hope you won’t take care of it and they can add extra fees on top of it. You have to call, go online or even go to the courthouse to even plead not guilty, and then you still have to pay the fine. Then if you win, you get a refund. My first instinct was to just pay this ticket and do traffic school and be done with it. But then I thought fuck that. There was no sign and this was a trick. I’m going to court. I’ll let you know how it goes. Perhaps if I baked that nice cop a batch of brownies he would “forget” to show up to court. Nah, I can’t afford that much mix.


Suzy said...

I'm glad you explained all that. A refund IF you win? Quelle bullshit.

I got a reckless driving ticket in Santa Monica (full of Nazi cops down there) going TEN miles per hour in my FORD FESTIVA. Feel better?

I ended up paying $350. I called and my other option was community service, which, now that I have a blog, would have been good blog fodder. I was broke at the time. SO broke.

The cop threatened me and said "Don't even THINK about showing up to court and thinking I won't be there because I WILL."

If the cop doesn't show, you walk.

Aunt Becky said...

Dude. That sort of makes me want to stab someone for you. That's BULLSHIT.

Badass Geek said...

I say good for you for fighting it. Speed traps are complete bullshit, and there are tons on them in the town I live in.

I suggest that you take pictures of road you were driving on, proving there was no School Zone sign in your direction, and a picture of the sign in the opposite direction.

Good luck, man.

SciFi Dad said...

Ooh. Dude. I'll be checking this post periodically for comments from LAPD. In the summer I reposted a story about my experience with a customs officer when crossing over from Buffalo, and I got some angry anonymous comments from the US Customs domain.

Captain Dumbass said...

Fight the fat bastard!

Juli Ryan said...

Cops freak me out. Now that I'm old, I just pay all the bullshit tickets and fines. I'm too tired to fight the law.

Bolton said...

Knowing this.. I will drive 5 miles slower than the speed limit this holiday week..

Chelle said...

That is complete bullshit!! I would have been so's different when there's a sign with the flashing lights, but no sign?? No lights to flash and warn you?!

Bullshit, my friend! Hoping this gets cleared up for you--I can't wait to read your update.

Ann's Rants said...

I've had two violations in my whole life, and both occurred in the past year.

1) ggdamn uturn



Vodka Mom said...

I'm sending over a dozen donuts.

SURELY that will help.

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