We all get speeding tickets at one time or another, and they suck. Does this mean we’re all speeders? Now, it means that speed traps have gotten more tricky and ridiculous to raise more money. The old cop joke: “Do cops have ticket quotas?” “I don’t have a quota, I can write as many tickets as I want”

I was taking Bella to school the way I’ve always gone for four years. I had my brother with me in the car and we were going to the airport afterwards. Nothing out of the ordinary. Right before Bella’s school is a high school that I pass every day. But this day I didn’t pass it.

I was stopped for the light outside the entrance to the high school and one of the fattest policemen I had ever seen waddled into traffic and told the guy in front of me and myself to pull over. Turns out he hadn’t tagged the guy in front of me, he just needed him to pull over to get to me. But then they started having a conversation and then the cop put his hand on his gun. Whoa, what’s going on? For a second I got a little frightened. I realized since this porky here obviously couldn’t run anyone down, he may be a pretty good shot to compensate for it. I thought maybe he had a desk job, but I don’t know if he would fit. At some point you have to be in shape to get through the Police Academy, right? So why don’t they retest periodically, or at least set a weight limit to that of a small building? But whatever the conversation was about, it ended and the other dude was on his way, scott-free.

The corpulent cop then explained to me I had been going 40 in a 40 zone, but since there are children present the speed limit was 25. What?! First of all, this is a HIGH SCHOOL. Some of these “kids” could be 18. Second, there is no school zone sign. I later learned it’s a block away in the other direction, so you would only see it if you were going a different way than I drove every day.

I looked at him write up my ticket on his motorcycle and thought OMG, this is the guy from that Guinness Book of World Records picture with the twins on the scooters.

So this leviathan in jack boots waddled back to my car and gave me my ticket. This was complete bullshit, and I saw he was pulling over three cars at a time all week because it was a trick speed trap. I tried to flash my lights on the way back to warn other drivers but I’m not sure if it helped. I didn’t say anything because I was so angry (not even a thank you!) and you certainly don’t want to make it worse. The typical responses all came to mind: “Why don’t you catch some real criminals? Try patrolling INSIDE the high school for a change. Have you tried Slimfast?” But I kept them to myself.

I was soon back on my way and dropped Bella off and explained what a ticket was. She was a bit confused. “A GOOD ticket gets you into Disneyland. A BAD ticket a fat policeman gives you for driving too fast. So there are different kinds of tickets”

Now LA has this system where they make it almost impossible and a huge hassle to not only fight a ticket but actually pay one. The inflatable cop lied and said “You’ll get the ticket in the mail and it will tell you how much you owe.” I knew that was bullshit from getting a ticket a few years back. That never happens. They never mail you anything so they hope you won’t take care of it and they can add extra fees on top of it. You have to call, go online or even go to the courthouse to even plead not guilty, and then you still have to pay the fine. Then if you win, you get a refund. My first instinct was to just pay this ticket and do traffic school and be done with it. But then I thought fuck that. There was no sign and this was a trick. I’m going to court. I’ll let you know how it goes. Perhaps if I baked that nice cop a batch of brownies he would “forget” to show up to court. Nah, I can’t afford that much mix.