Thursday, March 5, 2009

And now a confession for you, Dad.

My own police officer story.

I was on my way to Nashville late one beautiful summer evening.

There was no moon. The stars were out. It was warm. As with most of my cars, the air conditioner didn't work, so I had the sun roof open. What WAS unusual about this evening was that I had the dash lights turned off so I could see the stars as I drove down the interstate at 70+ miles per hour. Having the dash lights off also helped me spot the flashing blue lights immediately as they appeared behind me. They weren't quite as pretty as the stars. Nor was the star on the side of the trooper's chase car.

Oh crap.

"License and registration."

"Yes, sir."

"Know how fast you were going, son?"

Here I was faced with a dilemma. I had no earthly clue how fast I was going because I had the dash lights off and was looking at the stars! But my parents had taught me to be honest. And I am. Almost to to a fault. But in this case, honesty is going to sound pretty damn stupid and just might get me tossed into a Cave City Kentucky jail. So maybe it would be OK to lie just this once and not admit how stupid I had been ... but my genetic upbringing won out and I chose honesty:

"No sir, to tell you the truth, I have no idea how fast I was going, I had the dash lights turned off and was looking at the stars through the sun roof." Probably NOT the best answer to give a police officer that is cruising a high-speed interstate, but it's the one I gave.

I began wondering what handcuffs would feel like. Do they cut off the circulation in your hands? Do they leave telltale scars that I could flash at people kind of like a "don't mess with me" warning?

To my complete surprise, the police officer handed me back my license, registration and a ticket for $250 and answered his own question, "You were doing 88 miles per hour, but I've knocked you down to 85, now turn on your lights and slow it down boy."

I left Kentucky with a lot less money but ALL my lights on.

Once again. Thanks, God.

PS. the stars were GREAT!