Friday, March 27, 2009

That’s the Ticket: Part 2

So as the officer is walking back to my car empty handed I am thinking two things:

1. If he asks you to step out of the car, whatever you do DON’T CRY; and
2. It’s 2009 you can cry if you want to.

He approaches the open driver-side window.

Officer: (looking at my expired New York state license) “So you live in New York?”
Me: “No, I live in Miami now. For the past year.”
Officer: “Okay, I see. Sorry I misunderstood you there.”

Huh? “Sorry”? “Misunderstood me”? I feel a window open, like perhaps if I reply with, “Why would I live in that union state. Did you hear they still think they won the war of northern aggression?” maybe we would have a good laugh and he would welcome me to Miami with a gentle tap on the car door and a warning to drive slower next time.

Officer: “Okay, now since your drivers license is expired I can’t let you drive home, so you’re going to have to get someone to pick you up.”

“Of course,” I respond, as though we are talking about someone else – some dimwitted jerk who got caught speeding with an expired license.

Officer: “Go ahead and call someone, I’ll be right back with your tickets.”

Plural. Ballsack. But no time to worry about that. Instead I begin plotting how I will explain to Brooke that she has to take a 20-minute taxi ride to come pick me up because I’m not allowed to drive myself home. I consider starting with a joke, like “Did you hear about the new restaurant on the moon? The food’s great but there’s no atmosphere! So I got pulled over and need you to come get me.”

I dial her number. Voicemail. Fuck me. Dial again. More voicemail. Here come those tears.

I continue this process for about ten minutes while the officer is back in his car dealing with, I imagine, all the writers’ cramps from my litany of offenses. Still unable to get through to Brooke, the officer again returns to my car.

Officer: “Somebody coming to get you?”
Me: “I tried calling my girlfriend but she hasn’t picked up. She’s the only person I know in Miami. .”
Officer: (stone face)

This isn’t true, of course. I know lots of people in Miami. Just not people that I would be comfortable with asking for a ride home because I broke the law. As I begin to wonder if it’s even possible to make new close friends after college – not just the type that you watch the game with, but ones who would bail you out of jail, and how the recently released movie I Love You, Man coincidentally deals exactly with this topic, the officer interrupts me with, “You can pull into this mall parking lot here and wait for her to get here.” He then sorts through the paperwork, handing me two tickets (one requiring a court appearance, bringing back bad memories of wearing a ties and being laughed at by hardened criminals) and no less than five additional pieces of literature explaining what needed to be done.

So with the officer still in his car behind me, I gingerly pull up the 200 feet and into the parking lot. I swing into a spot and begin calling Brooke again. Nothing. At this point, I figure the best thing to do would be to drink. So I take my literature with me into a little French restaurant in the mall and sit at the bar. The eastern European-looking woman tending bar asks me what I’ll have. I order a beer and settle in with my documentation to go over my options (bend over and take it by mail, bend over and take it by phone, or hang tight and we’ll let you know when you can come down here in person to bend over and take it). The look on my face – a flushed combination of disappointment and self-loathing – must have given something away, because the bartender asked if everything was alright.

“Yes,” I respond, taking a swig of beer. “It’s just that my girlfriend won’t call me back.” This must have come out way more depressing than I had intended, because she then tilts her head to the side and replies with tenderness in her eyes, “Sometimes you just have to move on.”

A few minutes later, I finally get through to Brooke and explain the situation.

Brooke: “Is the officer gone?”
Me: “Yeah.”
Brooke: “So just drive home.”
Me: “That’s a great idea. Then if the police officer is waiting at the entrance of the mall and he catches me I’LL BE ARRESTED. I can’t go to prison. I don’t even smoke.”
Brooke: “Fine, I’ll be right there. But you’re taking me to dinner.”
Me: “As long as you drive . . .”

After hanging up the phone, I down one more beer and tip the bartender nicely, thinking she’s right: Sometimes you just have to move on.*

* But not before blogging about it.


Anonymous Kevin Costner said...

You're sure as shit not going to make close new friends if you EDIT THEIR CRITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS OUT OF YOUR STORIES, like you're Lawrence Kasdan and they're a faceless Kevin Costner-shaped corpse on a slab.

March 27, 2009 at 4:48:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

seriously? florida is not the south.
you need to get over it and move on from ny -- if living there is the only thing that made you an interesting person and you can't be interesting living in a different place, i feel sorry for you.

March 27, 2009 at 10:37:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's it? All that build up and that's it?

March 28, 2009 at 12:31:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous hedlyse said...

Wow, the trolls decided they'd get in early. Well, I guess the interlude might have led us to think there was little more, but it was enough - especially the joke about the moon ;)

March 28, 2009 at 2:02:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I must be the only person who thought the post was awesome.

March 28, 2009 at 5:51:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Some Girl said...

I think you're confusing Georgia and Florida. There was no "Battle of Miami" in the Civil War.

Good luck with the DMV. That place is vicious.

March 28, 2009 at 11:02:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Gwin said...

um, what did you get pulled over for?

March 29, 2009 at 6:35:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Sarah said...

I agree with Brooke about driving home after he left. He prob expected you to do it. But by the time she called back you had that beer so it was out of the question.

March 30, 2009 at 1:05:00 PM EDT  
Blogger sid said...

Dude I would have so waited for the officer to leave before driving off. I'm badass that way.

March 30, 2009 at 1:47:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

just a thought to the posters above ... that cop obviously patrols that area, so even if he wasn't intentionally looking for dan, it's very likely he would have spotted him again and recognized the car. And after adding a beer to the mix...? eeeeeeeek. Don't drop the soap!

March 30, 2009 at 8:55:00 PM EDT  
Blogger insomniaclolita said...

Thatd be me, driving off after the officer left :P You're a better person then.

April 1, 2009 at 2:18:00 AM EDT  
Blogger weesle909 said...

Anonymous #1 is clearly not from NY, or would understand you never 'move on from NY'. It's what makes us better than you, get it?

If Florida is not the south, then what is it? The north? The east? The west? Help me out here. Some heretofore unknown direction?

Also, apparently the post was interesting enough for you to read, so I don't think NY is the problem.

April 3, 2009 at 12:56:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When do we get a new post? Please don't forget about your loyal followers. We need to know about the havoc and mayhem in your life.

April 6, 2009 at 2:44:00 PM EDT  
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