Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Can't escape Southern justice

How do the chronically A-holic manage to skate in life while we righteous people get the shaft, sometimes as a direct result of their A-hole-i-ty?

I'll give you an example. I landed in Miami on Monday afternoon after two long flights cross country. I was sick and tired -- literally on both counts -- but I was my normal cheerful self. (Shaddup!). When this woman with two small children burst to the front of the boarding line in Denver and demanded to be preboarded, even though this airline does not preboard kids, and told the gate agent, "You're going to be sorry later on," I let her live. When she snapped at the guy in front of her on the plane to move into his row so she and her precious babies could get to their seats, I spared her my rapier wit (Shaddup!).

See, nice me, right?

So I get my rental car in Miami and head for my hotel. For nearly a mile on this two-lane feeder road to the main drag that intersects with the freeway, I have to follow this douchenozzle driving between 15 and 20 mph in 30, driving me insane. I wasn't in a huge hurry, but it's hard to drive that slow in a car that has a little zoom.

We get to a traffic light at the main drag. He's the first car, I'm the second. I need to turn right. He has his right blinker on. So, to get ahead of him, I cut through a Shell station on the corner and get onto the main road. That appears to be illegal in Florida, as I soon learned, and a law-enforcement priority at a time when a couple bajillion gallons of fuel from the gulf are ready to envelope this state.

As an aside, I believe I should be able to do what I want at a Shell station short of robbing it or stealing gas. I live in a town with a Shell refinery. I buy their gas most of the time. They should welcome my little "detours" through their stations. Same theory applies when I need to pee. Being a Marriott platinum member who spends 100 nights a year in their hotels, I should get a key card that allows me to enter any locked men's room in any Marriott in the world.

Yes I have a sense of urinary entitlement. Make something of it.

Back to Miami. Cop sees me cut through the Shell station, pulls me over and tells me what I did wrong. Now, I know the era of the friendly warning is over now that cities are desperate for cash. I know there'll be no talking him out of my $179 fine for for that reason alone. But in my fantasy world, I imagine this scenario:

When the officer saw the Georgia plates on my rental car, he thought, "I'm gonna get this sumbitch peanut boy. Probably Jimmy Carter's bastard son. That's right, Georgia, come to Jacksonville like you did in '54 and beat my Gators, make my Betty Lou cry. I'll show you, you sumbitch. Time for a li'l South Florida justice."

Imagine his disappointment when he saw my California driver's license, but it only lasted a few seconds until he walked back to the car and thought, "I'll get this sumbitch anyhow, coming down here from fruity Cal-ee-FOR-nia with his Kim Kar-DASH-ee-an and his damned liberal governer and his "I'll be back." Made my Betty Lou laugh, though, in that 'Kinnergarten Cop" deal. Probably Warren Beatty's bastard son. Time for a li'l South Florida justice."

Of course, this cop had no southern accent, and he probably is much smarter than my stupid stereotype and, oh, by the way, I actually did cut through the Shell station.

The cop here isn't the villain. It's that A-hole who was driving in front of me, carrying on after his right turn, in blissful stupidity, as I sat in my car weighing the risk of getting tased if I got out to tell the cop my Shell Marriott piss philosophy in one last-ditch effort to escape the ticket.

A-hole driver knows who he is. He was probably starting a drive to Orlando. Should get there in time for the next Georgia-Florida football game.


  1. Henry, you simply set yourself up on this one. It's all about appropriate expectations. If you're on the Autobahn and an A-holemeister is going 60, please do get pissed off. But in Miami? The home of the 150 year-old driver?

  2. I'm with Henry with this one. People in the South (especially here in Georgia, where I suffer through life) drive like either A-Holes or Idiots, but usually are indistinguishable from one another. Yet another example as to why people should be allowed to shoot paintballs at these kinds of morons to warn the rest of the freeway driving public.

  3. G, you mean we aren't supposed to do that?

  4. Bill, hold on let me look through my drivers ed booklet... Just as I thought, nothing in there saying we can't shoot paintballs at moron drivers. Lock and load!

  5. Just so you know Henry, for when you come down here to cover the Dodgers, it's illegal in LA as well to cut through a gas station.

  6. Hi Christine. Can I cut through Tommy's burgers?

  7. Why is it that the A-hole in front of us is always driving dangerously slow, the A-hole behind us is always driving dangerously fast, and the A-hole alongside us is always dangerously on her/his cell phone?

    Could it be because each of them is mistakenly living under the impression they are ALONE ON THE PLANET?