Monday 4 June 2012


Choose your own adventure: small town edition

Grow up in small town with a father who is a very prominent citizen.  Have various teachers, etc., criticize father when teaching your classes, being parents of your friends, etc.  Swear you will never use father's name to your advantage.
Move away for ten years.
Have people make comments about you using your father's name to say, get a stop sign put in, even though you did not and he has no jurisdiction over local street signs.
Nine years after moving back, receive call from school principal, another townie, asking you to organize gift for teacher you don't like.  Do it, for the greater good and because you don't like to make waves.
Call parents of child's classmates, including father you went to school with who is local p0lice 0fficer, to organize gift.
The next day, drive two sick children (bronchitis!) to the pediatrician on road you drive 2-3 times a day.
KEY*red blob: stop signyellow blob: dead end street sign for road to left with blue blob on itbrown blobs: industrial buildingsblue blob: c0p carwhite blobs: other carsgray arrows: ONLY DIRECTION YOU CAN GOblack arrows: ONLY DIRECTION OPPOSING TRAFFIC CAN GO*Shalini makes this look way easier than it is.
Go through intersection, after briefly stopping, as you do every day.See flashing lights in rear view.Pull over.See HS acquaintance/father of kid's classmate/p0lice 0fficer approach.Give him license and registration, trying to remain calm and conversational for freaked out children in van and because you are hoping he will just give you a warning.Call pediatrician's office to tell them why you will be late. Receive $112 ticket for 'rolling through a stop sign.'Listen to 0fficer tell you how he classified offence so you don't get points on your license.Gee, thanks.Go to pediatrician's and tell receptionists (both HS acquaintances) what happened.  They reply, "What a JERK" and promise to charge him a triple copay next time.Go home and tell your mother, who was babysitting other children, what happened.She goes home and tells your father, who is, ah, angry.Wow.
You really aren't sure what happened at the intersection, although you always obey traffic signs and have never had a ticket.  You have a tendency to blather when you are uncomfortable.  Say, in a courtroom.  You blathered a LOT to the c0p because you were nervous and hoped he would give you a break.  Could he use whatever you said against you?  You do not have $112 to spare.  You are pissed.  You think maybe it is time to try to use your father's influence to your advantage, since people think you do it all the time anyway, so what the hell?  Husband thinks you should go just to waste c0p's time, figuring the more people who do that, the less likely he will give out this type of ticket.
Do you:Say you are guilty and pay the ticket.Let your father complain to mayor about p0lice shooting fish in a barrel instead of dealing with real traffic problems, which does nothing about the ticket but is satisfying.Say you are not guilty and wait to appear in front of the d!strict judge.  Who you also grew up with.Whose father shares office space with your father.Whose son is also in your child's class.Who you also called about the stupid class gift.Who goes to church with you.Think it is worth it to go whether you win or not just to draw attention to the ridiculousness of the situation.
If you go to court, do you:Take your father. (Hint: you don't have a choice here.)Take your husband.Both.Let your father get you a lawyer.  (Hee!  But seriously, he offered.)Think you can open your mouth without making an idiot of yourself. read more..

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