When I was 16 (young and dumb) I got a job as a apprentice pastrychef and would ride to work at 11pm. One night I had the particular bad luck that my bike headlight died. Anyway, I was riding to work going top speed of about 50kmph downhill; it was ice cold, my fingers were frozen, my eyes were tearing, and the world was flying past in a flash. Suddenly, some idiot driving towards me blinded me with his headlights and screamed out the window. Fully expecting a beer bottle to be thrown at my head (or similar) I shot straight up the footpath and into the park to escape my attacker. It was only when I looked back after 50 meters I noticed the white commodore… Needless to say I was hunted down like the dog I am and had my pockets searched for drugs. A lesser person might have realized I was a scared apprentice going to work by my chef uniform but that didn’t faze officer fuckhead. After a good 1 hour lecture about how I might have held up important police business (they could have been on the way to stop a robbery the officer explained), I had my tires let down 12km away from my employment. Needless to say I was late and almost lost my apprenticeship. It also cost me $60 for not having a light. I am so terribly sorry that I hindered a police officer from preventing a home invasion – however you must forgive me as I am slightly retarded.
About 2 months ago there was an incident at my home where a poker game suddenly became violent. My new neighbor who had only moved in weeks ago flipped out and attacked my friend leaving us all in shock and disbelief. He was naturally evicted from the house but returned 20 minutes later with a hand gun. We called the police and waited in anticipation for them to come to our aid. Anticipation turned to nervousness and finally became boredom as we waited for 1 ½ hours for the local police officers to arrive. I’m not entirely sure what took them but there was obviously a good reason it took our protective saints so long to arrive. Maybe a 16 year old kid was riding without a bicycle light.
…But about the topic of this letter. I admit – I was at fault. I was too busy watching the road and oncoming traffic to notice the soldier of justice standing in the bushes waiting to prey on a hapless victim who would not dare to stand up for his own innocence. I should have been looking left at that intersection – I would have seen our brave hero. Yes I should have looked left -- After all, it was only other useless oncoming traffic coming from the right and that is unimportant. I might have stopped exactly at the stop sign if I had looked left instead of stopping at the safest location on the T intersection 1 meter away from the stop sign. No my offense wasn’t: ‘failure to stop at a stop sign’ as per my infringement notice. My alleged offense doesn’t involve my driving through a stop sign – I am accused of having rolled over the line at some ridiculously slow speed.
Yes, I feel downright warm and fuzzy when I think of how our fantastic law enforcement officers protect us. At least I know that now the police are doing something constructive with their time – even if it is only revenue-raising by harassing innocent people in the hope they won’t challenge a fine in court.
But it is my life motto to learn something from every experience I have. From this experience I have learned that I should pay far more attention to the bushes than the road. After all the danger lurks there. The same could be said for oncoming traffic. Traffic is far less dangerous than a white line across a road that will fine you if you stop your vehicle more than 20 centimeters away from it.