I was on my way to my grandmother’s a few days ago and I rounded a curve that went slightly downhill when all of the sudden, I saw two sheriff’s cars at the bottom of the hill. I quickly slowed way down, but before I even passed them, one of the cars (an SUV, actually) turned on its flashing lights. It pulled out behind me and for awhile I told myself it had just turned on its lights because it was going to pull out onto the road and it had nothing to do with me, but when it kept following me with the lights flashing, I sighed and pulled over.
I was secretly hoping I was wrong and it would pass right by me, but nope, it pulled off the road behind me, so I gathered all the pertinent information to have ready when the nice sheriff’s deputy came to my window.
“Hello, I’m Lt. Too Young with the Middle of Nowhere County Sheriff’s Office and today we are conducting a Safety Checkpoint [read: speed trap]. We clocked you going 70 in a 55 zone.”
Possible (true) responses at this point:
- I’m sorry officer, I have a lead foot. Always have, always will.
- I’m sorry officer, I actually had no idea how fast I was going. I usually try to go about 10 mph over the speed limit.
- I’m sorry officer, but I was stuck behind this person who was going between 50 and 55 mph and I got the opportunity to pass them and once I did, it felt so good, I just kept flying.
- Wow. You are really young! Every other time I’ve been pulled over it’s been by someone way older than me.
- You know, officer, in the city, going 15mph over the speed limit is nothing.
- But, officer, I totally hit the brakes and slowed down as soon as I saw you!
But, I didn’t think any of these responses would do me any good, so what I said was, “Okay.” Pause. “Sorry.” And handed over my license and the rental car information and my insurance card. He went back to his SUV, wrote up the ticket, returned with it and information about traffic safety school in case I wanted to attend so that the ticket wouldn’t show up on my record (who the hell has time to attend traffic safety school??), told me to make sure to take care of the ticket before April 2, cautioned me to be careful pulling back out onto the road, said, “have a nice day,” then left. He was excruciatingly polite.
I do not understand how people get out of speeding tickets. I mean, what is there to say? They have the speed gun thingy, they know how fast you’re going, it’s not like you can deny it. Before anyone mentions it, it did not occur to me to use feminine wiles and even if it had, I was at a distinct disadvantage wearing a baggy t-shirt and wearing no makeup. Bursting into tears might have been an option, but that didn’t occur to me either. Actually, I was sort of amused by the whole thing.
Oh, on the return trip, when I was very carefully not going more than 2 or 3 mph over the speed limit, I saw someone else pulled over at the exact same spot I had been.
“Safety checkpoint” my ass.