Blame It On The Junior Mints
Seriously. I feel so dirty today. Dirty like a criminal. File this one under “Don’t they have someone worse to pick on?” This afternoon I made a quick pit stop at the local convenience store. I have a thing for Junior Mints. They’re my downfall. I love them. But back to my lurid tale. Pulling out of the parking lot, I look left. Only car in sight is a sheriff’s cruiser more than half a block away. I turn right, heading back to the tv station. Before I can plop my first Junior Mint in my mouth, I see flashing lights behind me. What? Then, another cop car. What did I do? Leave the convenience store without paying for my Junior Mints? Being the curious type I stop. Dep. Dudley Doright marches to my door with hand on gun belt, and his buddy standing guard. “License and proof of insurance.” OK. “Want to know why I stopped you?” Well, sure, that is one of the questions on my mind. Actually, the only one. “You blew through that stop sign coming out of the convenience store.” Say what? “You heard me.” Stop sign? What stop sign? “Stay right there. I’ll be right back.” OK. As I’m waiting, I wonder what it’s like to spend a night in jail. I wonder if they’ll take away my Junior Mints. Dep. Doright is back. Excuse me, could you explain that one again? “You blew through the stop sign coming out of the…” Stop sign? I didn’t know there’s a stop sign there? “Hey where do you work?” Channel 8. “Thought you looked familiar.” I’m no different than anyone else. I love flattery. But at this point I’m not flattered. I’m angry. Not outwardly. Oh no. I’ve been around long enough not to question Dep. Powertrip’s — I mean Doright’s authority. “I’m going to let you go this time, but if I see you do it again, I WILL write you a ticket, and throw you in jail.” (OK I made up the jail part, but the rest is true). Instead of going back to the station, I drive around the block (careful not to go even a mile over the speed limit, in case “you know who” is watching) and then I do something really risky. I return to the scene of the crime. I want to see that stop sign I blew through. Guess what? IT’S NOT THERE. Just as I thought, there IS no stop sign. But Dep. Doright IS there. I suspect waiting for another hardened criminal to blow past the phantom stop sign. OK, now I am mad. I head right back to the station without eating one Junior Mint (that takes will power). I call a friend of mine down at the sheriff’s department, who also happens to be high up in command. I tell him my story. He says “WHAT? I’ve never heard of that before. Did you get a good look at the suspects (he actually said “did you get the deputy’s name?”). So he spends about 10 minutes looking through the Oklahoma state statutes book. “No, #11404 says you only have to yield coming out of private property onto a highway or street.” Aha. “Do you want to press charges?” (Just kidding) “Oh, wait. Here it is. Statute #11704 says (blah, blah, blah,) you must come to a complete stop before (blah, blah, blah). By golly, I didn’t know that myself. So technically speaking you were breaking the law. It must be a slow crime day.” I hang up. I can relate to the last thing he said. We also have slow days in the news business, and I’m sure many wonder why we’re making a big deal out of nothing. So the moral to the story is: Beware of slow crime days. Dep. Doright may be watching, and pull you over for violating some little known and obscure law. Like I said, I feel so dirty. I think I’ll cut back on the Junior Mints.