I drive like a grandma. Every once in a while my southern California roots show up and I start swerving through traffic, but for the most part, I pretty much putt along without much drama.
It was 2 a.m. on a cool night in the late fall my freshman year of college. I had to return a video to Blockbuster, and I didn't want to do it the next day, so I hopped in my car and started driving down the street. There was no one around, and I wasn't really paying attention to my speed, when I noticed a car make a U-turn from a parked position on the opposite side of the road and start following me. The car was black and white, and all the blood immediately drained from my face. I had never been pulled over before (I wasn't just making up the grandma reference). I immediately checked my speedometer and it registered at 35 mph. I was in a 25 zone. Sure enough, lights flashed on the roof of the car, and I had to pull over. He hit me with a spotlight and got out of the car. After taking my license and registration, he asked me if I knew how fast I was going.
At this point, I wished I had some reservoire of "getting out of tickets" stories. As it was, I had no idea what to say or how to explain I wasn't a psycho teenager, but was in fact one of the much rarer boring variety ... the kind that spent many evenings playing Skip-Bo with his parents.
Wow, that sounds lame. It is amazing how normal I feel until I start typing. Now that it's written, it's like I'm shining a bright spotlight on my dull teenage years. Don't get me wrong. I'm fine with them the way they were. I'm just starting to wonder about the wisdom of cluing everyone else in.
I don't remember what I told the cop, but it resulted in a $40 ticket, so it can't have been that good. I've never gotten a ticket since, and I haven't even been pulled over, but parts of me feel a little gyped when I hear people talk about how many times they've been pulled over and are still "ticket-free."