Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Traffic Court

Well, that was easy enough.

Although court wasn't scheduled until 9 a.m., I arrived at 8:20 and sat in my favorite seat which - considering my number of appearances - should rightfully be reserved for me, and proceeded to read a book while I waited. I've learned from experience that the earlier one arrives for traffic court the quicker one will be able to leave, and I always feel smug when the administrative stuff is over and I walk past the long line of people who I know will probably still be standing there at noon.

Because I live in an agrarian county that's also experiencing a lot of development, we have a growing population of Latin American immigrants. I will, for now, withhold my opinion on the obvious need for immigration reform and only say that the influx has resulted in one good thing locally - the hiring of a Latin American assistant district attorney. He's tall, has a moustache and goatee and sounds exactly like Antonio Banderas. At the sound of his voice, the eyes of every female in the courtroom glazed over with undisguised passion. Well, almost every female. I'm not sure about the lady with the crewcut who was sitting beside me; the burly female bailiff by the door seemed more to her liking.

As all us poor traffic offenders sat there waiting, the assistant DA stepped up to explain the process. He told us that we'd be divided into two groups - those with last names beginning with letters A through K and those with last names beginning with letters L through Z. Then he said the most beautiful words: "If you had expired inspection or operator's license and can supply proof that you have corrected those things, those charges will be automatically dropped." Only he said it with an accent, which made it even better.

That left me with just one charge to worry about - the seatbelt violation which, according to my ticket, should have cost me $60 plus $110 in court costs. Because I arrived early enough to get my near-the-front-row seat, I was one of the first to gain an audience with Antonio Banderas, who was handling everyone with the last name beginning with the letters L through Z. I cast a sympathetic glance across the room those poor, deprived females whose names ended in A through K - the ones stuck with a pinch-faced female assistant DA who did not look like she was having the best of days.

Antonio Banderas looked over my tickets and proof that I'd indeed renewed my license and registration, bantered with me for a moment about what sorry luck it took to get three tickets in one stop, and then dismissed those two charges. He then scribbled something on my third ticket - the one for the seatbelt violation - and that was that. I'm not sure what he did, but when I went to pay the fine it wasn't the $170 I expected, but $100. In the end, I walked out paying about $200 less than I feared I'd have to pay, which was awesome, because I'm quite sure I need the money more than the state does.

So that's my traffic court story. And I'm off now to prepare for a Weekend Away, which I'm now actually starting to look forward to. I shall be taking my camera and laptop, and since I'm going to major city with hotel that no doubt will have a wireless connection I shall perhaps have a chance to blog from my trip.

Until then...

PS. Bobb, thanks for the traffic court meditation; I believe it made quite a difference in the outcome. :-)

12 comments:

Bobbb - Citizen of Earth said...

:-)

Have a good trip Morgan

You Driving to the airport?
Get an early srart
Take it slow
Be calm
Enjoy

Andrea said...

How cool is it when you actually get a break and come across someone understanding? Glad it worked out for you...$100 surely hurts less than $300.

Antonio Banderas, eh? He looked pretty good in Interview With The Vampire :D

Morgan said...

Bobb, we're not flying. We're driving. It's out of state but not across the country, just up, up, up the coast.

Andrea, I loved Banderas in Inteview with the Vampire. On the full moons I leave my windows open. No luck yet, though. :-)

Suspect said...

You're going on a road trip? Oh no! This means no more Octavia?

Muamuamua...

Morgan said...

There, there Suspect. Our trip will take us to a place that has animals. Perhaps none as regal and horrible as Octavia, but animals nonetheless. And I will take pictures and post them.

CJ said...

Where are you going?

Morgan said...

CJ, I'm going to post pictures from the trip. People should be able to guess where I am when they see them.

That Cleaning Lady said...

Happy tripping, hope the critters will all behave while you're gone. I have a short story of my own mini-octavia when you get back if you care to read about it-- and perhaps comment upon same.
Glad Antonio gave you a break, though I'd be happier to know you learned your lesson and WILL BE WEARING YOUR SEATBELT!!!! The cop was right you know... the result of a person doing a flying Wallenza through a windshield is NOT a pretty site, even Octavia would reject the remains.
Oh, and Interview was a pretty darn good vampire movie, though it was dogonne gory.
Drive safe!!!

Anonymous said...

It is prudent to wear a seatbelt, however a law requiring it and a cop enforcing it are invasions of her privacy.
Driving without a seatbelt does not increase the chances of there being an accident. It will increase the chances of severe injuries but Morgan is a rational person capable of making that decision for herself (her insurance company may have issues, but that is fair since they agree to compensate Morgan in case of an injury in the car.)

Andrea said...

Looking forward to your travel-blogging....have a fun weekend!

That Cleaning Lady said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
That Cleaning Lady said...

Driving without a seatbelt won't increase the chances of an accident, but it will certainly keep you from flying out the window or around in the car if you are in an accident. Whether it is prudent (mr. Bush) is another subject. A person has a complete right to privacy in her own vehicle (thus the rampant overuse and abuse of cell phones in cars). But there are those of us out here that care for her want her safe and effectively contained in her vehicle, concentrating on the road and the million other cars on the road, and not looking in the rearview to see if that cop is going to stop her today.