Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Thankful For Being A Cyclone

Wow... I've never been so nervous in my life. I moved across the state line six months ago, but I've been reluctant to change over my car registration and drivers license. This isn't because I have some great tie to the state of Kansas (because I do not), but for a few stupid reasons including that I had renewed my car tags one month before I officially moved, the Missouri required vehicle inspection, the thought of spending a day at the DMV and my dislike for paying for any of the ridiculousness associated with the process.

About a month ago, I found out that my brake lights were no longer functioning. Being a somewhat dangerous problem, I decided to take care of this and start the whole process - get the car fixed, inspected, registered, retitled, blah blah blah. I get the inspection - it needs new front brakes, but the brake lights require the ordering of a part from out of state. The mechanic agreed that it would be acceptable to just take care of everything at one time, so when the part arrives - I'll bring the car back. They tell me the part would take about a week to get, then everything would be fixed the following day. Three weeks later - the part has yet to arrive. I call this week and finally, the part has arrived and the car can be taken in on Wednesday morning and repaired the same day.

And now the reason for my extreme nervousness. It's Tuesday night and the car is going in the next morning. I'm returning from Megan's around midnight after consuming a few beverages (I was not inebriated, but had a few drinks) ... driving through one of the not-so-glamorous sections of town between our two residences, when a large vehicle runs up behind me. Since I have no brake lights, I try my best to keep distance between the drivers behind me because I don't trust people's reaction time without the warning lights - so I speed up a little ( it is a two lane road - one each direction). When the road widens to four lanes, I slow down and change lanes, the vehicle follows. I turn where I normally turn to continue my route home - the vehicle follows. I am not terribly happy, knowing what neighborhood I am in and (according to the local news) the types of events that can occur there.

And then... the lights come on. It was a police van. And here I am, speeding (according to him), driving a car with no brake lights, an out of date (in terms of address) driver's license and registration, an address on my insurance card that doesn't match any of the other addresses and myself possibly smelling of alcohol and nervous as hell because I thought I was being followed by some "hooligan" through a bad neighborhood. Now he's asking me a bunch of questions and I'm bumbling through them because of my nervousness. As he takes my license back to his van, another police car approaches stops to chat with my officer and I'm getting even more nervous. What the hell is going to happen? Are they going to fucking destroy me? Write me a half dozen tickets? Arrest me?

He approaches my window again, pauses to look at the back of my car, then completes his approach and hands me back my license. Here is the final dialog:

Officer: "Is this your vehicle?"
Me: "Yeah." (said in an extremely slow, why would I be driving this car if it weren't mine attitude)
Officer: "Where did you purchase the car?"
Me: "Ames." (same slow - where the fuck is this going? - thought process)
Officer: "Did you go to Iowa State?"
Me: "Yes."
Officer: "Today's your lucky day. So did I. Get on the highway, drive the speed limit and go home."
Me: "Yes, sir. Thank you."

Jesus Christ. Needless to say, I drove the speed limit and went home. Then I got out some ice cream and sat down and watched some TV and tried to relax. So much for trying to keep my blood pressure down. I think I'll wait about a week before checking that again. Damn. I don't think he let me off because I went to ISU, but at that moment, I was very thankful for being a Cyclone.


kilax said...

Ha ha! I wonder how often THAT happens.

Andrew Skaff said...

I have no idea... but I consider myself to have been rather lucky.

Bro said...

Ha ha. Good story.

Miss Jodi said...

Wow! That was definitely your lucky day!