My friend Heather called yesterday to read “our” horoscope to me. We are both Virgos. Part of the horoscope said we could see an improvement in our financial situations. I’m unemployed — or maybe “under employed” is a better description — so I am game for an improvement.
After we talked, I decided to run quickly to the little store down the street and pick up some pet food to hold me until I made the big run on Wednesday. Driving through Clear Creek Forest, a car coming in my direction suddenly pulled to the shoulder. Quickly enough to push up a cloud of dust and catch my attention. Shit! A police car!
I let my car slow a bit and kept my eye on the rear view mirror… sure enough, it was me he wanted. So I pulled over on one of the little side streets. The road I was on was hardly wide enough to accommodate us on the shoulder and other traffic passing through.
The officer walks up from the rear and touches the back of my car. Why? I don’t know. He comes to my window, introduces himself and says he clocked me going 45 mph in a 30 mph zone. My lucky day, I guess; only doing 45. But that’s because there was someone in front of me only going 45.
Then he taps on the windshield. Shit #2! “Do you know that your registration expired in January and your inspection expired in February?” “Oh wait,” I tell him, “I have the new registration sticker right here” and I pull it out of the glove box.
“Well, that’s one out of two,” he replies and he asks for my license and proof of insurance. So I hand him my insurance card that shows an expiration date of the end of that day. I explained that I am transferring my car insurance to the company that also has my home insurance to save money. The insurance company had both policies years ago, but that’s another long and crazy story.
The officer and I discussed the insurance discount for a bit during which I mentioned that being unemployed, I am trying to save everywhere I can. He seemed to understand that.
So he went back to his car with my license and insurance card. And within a few seconds shit #3 hits me. The tags on my car expired just over two years ago. I have the new ones in the car… just haven’t put them ON the car yet. Shit, shit, shit.
A friend and I were comparing levels of procrastination a few months ago. I told her I could beat her hands down and explained about my car tags. I told her they were under the seat, so I could show them to the cop should I ever get stopped. As we were laughing about this, she told me that I should be very careful if I reach under the seat for the tags else the cop might think I am reaching for a weapon. I had never thought of that, but she was right. I moved the tags from under the passenger seat to the space between the passenger seat and the stick shift console so I could visibly reach them.
I calmly waited for the officer to return and ask about my tags. When he came back, he had his little clip board. He told me that because I was unemployed, he would cut me a break… and give me a written warning. I was so excited that there was no mention of tags that I never even asked what consequences there are to a written warning. I signed the ticket and thanked him profusely.
I still don’t know what if any consequences there are to a written warning (instead of a verbal warning), but tomorrow I plan to put the new tags on my car and get it inspected on my way to the pet food store.
When Heather called back last night, I told her about being stopped and my hope that my financial improvement goes beyond not getting a speeding ticket. While I have no idea how much a speeding ticket costs these days, I was hoping that the astrological forecast for financial improvement meant something bigger. This “squeezing nickels out of pennies” routine gets exhausting.
And one more thing: 30 mph is too damn slow! But I’ll certainly give it a try. And I’ll stay out of Clear Creek Forest as much as possible.