Thursday, May 18, 2006

Click it or Ticket?

I left the meeting in a fast hurry that afternoon, sliding into the drivers seat, turning the key and putting the car in drive all in one fluid motion. I needed to get home. Now. Was it food poisoning? A sudden stomach flu? Who knows. But it was not going to wait. I'd held on through the meeting, sweat breaking out on my forehead as wave after wave of colonic cramps shattered my focus. The contents of my nether regions were about to rebel, bursting forth from their intestinal confines in an explosive rush of liquid revolution. But I had made it to my car and I was on the move! "Bear down man," I groaned to myself, "You can make it home." The volatile plasma in my lower intestines screamed back their dissension. "Maybe not."

As my skin glistened with a sick sweaty film, I was sharply focused. My very being was dedicated to two inviolable commandments now.

1 - Thou shalt get home. Quickly.
2 - Thou shalt not relinquish control of your sphincter.

Time blurred. Somehow I managed to maintain a legal driving speed and soon, through sweat stung eyes, I found myself rounding the last corner and climbing the hill to my home. Relief was in site and I had not broken any laws getting here. Or so I thought.

Just as I was nearing the hilltop, within a stones throw of my glorious bathroom, some Pavlovian reaction caused my sphincter to spasm violently in anticipation. I had only seconds now. I was going to have to use "the maneuver."

In case your unfamiliar, the maneuver is a technique that is employed in just such a situation as my own, i.e. it's on its way and it won't be delayed. In one fluid motion, you rip your pants and underwear down to knee level as you quickly swing your ass around to a position approximately over the bowl and let go of your cares. When done properly, it can shave precious microseconds. And this was my dire situation, 100 yards from my door, visualizing the maneuver in my head to insure success, sweat literally dripping from my brow & running down my neck, intestines heaving like a cable bridge in an earthquake, when the lights and sirens came on behind me. Yes. I was being pulled over.

And thank god, too. As it became clear when the Police Officer began to speak, I had forgotten, in my rush, to wear my seatbelt. The horror.

Now. Normally, I'm an upright law abiding citizen with a healthy respect for law enforcement. My seatbelt is usually clipped nicely across my lap, like all good comrades. And sitting in my hot car waiting for the impending burst of diarrhea to change my relationship with my car forever, suddenly on the wrong side of the law, well, lets just say that my feelings for this particular sergeant in the Moses Lake, WA Police Department who drives an unmarked grey cruiser and who will remain un-named but for convenience sake will henceforth be referred to as Dick, well, lets just say my feelings for him went beyond words.

"Can you tell my why you are driving without a seatbelt sir?" he asked. Words escaped me. The gravity of the situation was apparent to both of us. I mean, there I was. Without a seatbelt. The humanity.

As I looked up at Dick though a haze of pain and sweat, I literally mumbled a dazed "I... I don't know officer." Now these guys, they are highly trained in human observation. They know how to discern if you've been drinking or are on drugs, etc., so with his heightened skills of perception and keen insight into human behavior, this wonderful intelligent law enforcement officer took the opportunity to fulfill his lifelong dream of protecting and serving. "Its illegal to drive without a seatbelt you know," Dick said dispassionately as I writhed in pain, "Can I see your license and registration?" At this point, I'm a white hot point of agony in a universe of shit. I'm sure there is leakage and if not, the seal is going to be permanently damaged. I mumbled something incoherent as I handed him my drivers license. Or my wallet. I'm not sure which.

As I turned to my glove box to retrieve my registration, I finally lost my humanity; the ability to over-ride the ape was gone. I was now reduced to basic primal needs; I had to shit. Parts of me were already practicing the moves. Prison would have been welcome if there was a toilet there.

With paperwork and cassette tapes dribbling from my shaking hands, I weakly turned back to my protector, Dick, and said, "Sir, I'm really feeling sick. If I don't get to my bathroom NOW, I'm going to shit myself." That's a quote. That's right, I said it. Right to Dicks face.

Dick, being an understanding and intelligent law enforcement officer, merely nodded. "Mmm-hmmm. And where is home, exactly?" he asked, always the care giver. "Right around the corner sir. I'm going there. Now," I stated as I put my car in drive. I didn't care that he had my drivers license. Nothing mattered now except that cool white porcelain. I could hear it calling in an angelic voice. "Come to me Jason," a seraphim singing, "Come shit in my cool white bowl. I'll give you comfort...." Or maybe I was delirious. Not sure.

Anyway, and here is the crux of the story, Dick replied' "Go ahead. I'll follow." And he did. My car was already rolling when he took his first step back to his BIG UNMARKED GREY CRUISER but he was soon again on my tail. Not a good place to be at this point, but I digress. To make a long story short, I made it home without any leakage, performed "the maneuver" successfully, and all was right with the universe once again.

My children got the opportunity to stand in my front door and watch police lights flash in my drive while I did my business. So did my neighbors. Thanks Dick, that was awesome. In fact, Dick is such a kind and understanding human, not to mention dedicated protector of our streets, that after I managed to stumble weakly past my wide eyed children and back out to my car to finally locate my registration, Dick was there for me. "Feeling any better?" he asked as he handed me a $101.00 traffic ticket. For failure to wear a seatbelt.

Ha ha, very funny Dick. I'll feel better when everyone reads this and learns what your really made of. What an honor & blessing it must be to protect and serve your community, to grow up and fulfill your dream of one day handing out tickets to obviously sick people for not buckling up, even in emergent situations, people who are so obviously ill that you agree to follow them home, sit in their driveway with lights flashing and wait to give them that ticket while they are inside heaving their guts inside-out. Yeah, because the screaming flaming diarrhea wasn't enough, so thanks again Dick. There's one more ticket for your quota. Plus, you've taken the opportunity to make at least one law abiding citizen feel more safe and welcome on the streets of Moses Lake. As I'm sure was the goal.

Anyway, since that day, I've been wearing my seat belt religiously. No one seems to care, but at least I'm saving lives. Right? I'll be taking this one to court. Perhaps the judge will be even more understanding than Dick, if that's even possible. I'd be more than happy to provide stool samples if necessary. You know. Whatever it takes to keep the streets safe. I mean, this couldn't be just about money. Could it?

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