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"This is the most exciting day of my life...and I was pulled on stage once to dance at a Bruce Springsteen concert."
30 Rock


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Sunday, February 06, 2005

Sunday, Bloody Sunday

For many, superbowl weekend is a time of chips and dip, beer and cheer. It's a time to kick back and relax and pray the fruit of (insert favorite team here)'s labor will be reaped, sewn and thrown, though not necessarily in that order.

But for me, superbowl weekend has always been just another weekend. Hate me if you must, but sports of all shapes and sizes have never been my thing. In fact, I didn't even know which 2 teams made it to the superbowl until a few days ago. I know. I know. Just take me out and shoot me and be done with it.

So while I had no vested interest in anything superbowl related, I did catch a glimpse of the halftime show. I love how the producers decided to play it safe this year by opting for the risk free booking of Paul McCartney vs. ahem last year's "show". Sure, Paul is getting up there in age, but how many artists do you know who can sing a song from 40 years ago and still make it seem cool? Hell, Ashlee Simpson can't even do that for a song circa 2004.

Still, amazingly enough, I did have intentions of possibly going to a superbowl party this weekend, but instead I ended up living out Janet Branagan and The Series of Unfortunate Events.

It all started a few days ago when I realized that report card time was rapidly approaching. Ok, perhaps approaching isn't the best word considering it was already here. In fact, completed report cards need to be submitted for approval by 9am Tuesday morning so they can go home with the little munchkins on Thursday. No pressure or anything.

Then, once report card planning was done, it was time to lesson plan. There are a lot of things to creatively plan this week for, too. Valentine's Day, President's Day and Chinese New Year became the trifecta of a Shakespearean dilemma. To teach or not to teach? That is the question.

Oh, did I mention I also made plans this weekend? So imagine my surprise when I got a call from one of my oldest friends saying her grandmother had passed away. The news didn't come as much of a shock as she had been suffering from Alzhemier's for some time now. Not that there is ever a good time for people to die, ever. Still, I knew that not being at the wake was not an option.

So, in a flurry of activity, as a sleepy self was driving home for the wake, I suddenly saw flashing lights appear in my rear view mirror. Yes, you guessed it. I was being pulled over, for speeding.

Now I have to state for the record that I am a poster child for good behavior. Seriously, at times it has been sickeningly so. But yes, even a Girl Scout like myself can be a little overzealous when driving at times. Come on now. Aren't we all? Still, I've cursed the guy who had to pass me to get one car ahead and cringed as I witnessed a vehicle or two slam on their breaks at the risk of getting that so-called edge in traffic. I bring these scenarios up because I am not that kind of girl. No, siree.

Only one other time in my life had I been pulled over for speeding. That time, I cried. I had just left school and I was going like 38 in 25. I don't know if it was the waterworks, the fact that I was a teacher or the way the sunlight hit my hair just so, but I got off that day, with just a falsified license plate mishap and a sigh of relief.

But this time when I got pulled over, for whatever the reason, the tears wouldn't come. He pulled me over and the first thing I found myself saying was the quite profound statement, "I'm sorry, I'm not from around here and I had to pee."

Now while this might work if say you were a tourist back packing through Europe or even a first grader roaming the fourth grade halls, you try saying it in Jersey and you might as well say nothing at all.

The guy asked me if I had a seatbelt on and I said yes. I realized immediately the catch 22 of this situation. Perhaps I would just get a damn falsified ticket and be on my merry way. But, if I didn't have my seat belt on and had run that risk I might have ended up with two tickets for the price of well...two.

Lo and behold the officer returned to my car, ticket in hand. Not just any ticket, a speeding ticket. Not just a speeding ticket, a 15-20 mile over speeding ticket (which I swear he didn't say the first time around). So of course, this puts me suddenly in a 4 point zone and running a serious risk of my insurance going up. But this thing ain't over it till it's over and I plan on showing up in court, even if it's in middle of bumble**** nowhere.

Wouldn't you know the minute I pulled away, that's when suddenly I was able to cry. I cried because if I had been really speeding, it could only have been for a split second. I cried because I tried too hard to be a successful multi-tasker.

But most of all, I think I cried because I was 25 miles from home and the officer never did tell me a good place to pull over and pee.



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