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Thursday, 09 February 2012

A Lifetime of Speeding Tickets

By Marcy Belson

The title is misleading. I have had exactly two speeding tickets in my 58 years of legal driving. I have to admit, if the police had stopped me every time I did speed, my house would be papered with tickets.

My first experience with a not-so-friendly, young police officer happened in San Diego. As a matter of fact, both of my tickets were in the same vicinity, but a time lapse of nearly 40 years.

My mother and I went to San Diego in the family car with me driving. We spent the day finding and purchasing my wedding dress. It was a second marriage for me and as was the custom, rather than a formal wedding gown, I wore a yellow cocktail length dress.

With the dress, shoes and a little frou frou veil of a hat, we were very pleased and tired, ready for the 125 mile trip home.

As we drove through the city, I had to make a left hand turn at a signal. I was perhaps three cars back, all turning. By the time I reached the middle of the intersection, the light had turned yellow, then red. I was immediately stopped by a police officer who was not swayed by a 22-year-old blond and her mother, both talking to him in an animated fashion.

I told the officer that I was already in the intersection when the light turned yellow to no avail. The ticket was written when my furious mother ordered me to not accept the ticket, that in her opinion, I was correct and he was mistaken.

The officer informed me that I had the right to refuse the ticket but he would be escorting me to jail in his car.

My mother screamed, "No, don't take it!"

There was no way I could win this battle. I figured better my mother angry than calling my dad and having to be bailed out of jail. I took the ticket and paid it. I think it was $30. That was close to the sum total of my weekly paycheck and I whined about the unfairness of it all for years.

The next time I saw those red lights blinking in my rear view mirror, I was a lot older and driving our car, with my husband as the passenger. It was evening, traffic was light and I was headed home when Gordon said, "Oh, by the way, I have to be at the hospital in the morning for a stress test."

That was my moment of terror. I turned to him and said, "What? Why?" and with my foot, pushed the gas pedal to the floor. I must have been going about 95mph when the officer clocked me flying by her.

Such a nice young woman, she gave me the choice of paying a hefty fine or going to an eight-hour class for speeders. Naturally, I chose the class.

It was held in an empty room in an old strip shopping center and on that unhappy day, I was the only female in a room full of young motorcycle riders. They mostly slept through the class and I swore to myself, no more speeding.

I am an agressive driver and I do like a car that moves, but Oregon has been good to me, knock wood!


[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. PLEASE read instructions for submitting.]

Posted by Ronni Bennett at 05:30 AM | Permalink | Email this post

Comments

LOL. What a great piece!

I’ve had my share of driving tickets during my approximately 52 years behind the wheel.

A few were for speeding, but most were for parking illegally.

The only time I find myself going beyond the speed limit these days would be on an open highway with hardly any traffic. However, once realized, I quickly resume the normal speed limit.

Unless there is an emergency situation, I’m no longer in much of a hurry.

Good story!

Funny story! My one and only ticket ever in 64 years of driving was for going 42 in a 30 mile an hour zone--I guess I'm just not adventurous! I did plead it down to a small fee based on my good record (over 50 years then of driving with no ticket)and financial hardship. But I was mortified.

Amazing story! I've had my share of driving ticket my approximately 62 year the wheel. As we drove through the city, I had to make a left hand turn at a signal. http://www.phillytrafficlawyer.com

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