That's not to say I have never been in trouble. When I was a youngster, with a license not even a week old, I ran a stop sign. There was nobody else at the intersection and I just slowed down to make sure no one else was coming and rolled through. And 100 yards down the road, the policeman that was coming the opposite direction nailed me. He cited me with a moving violation. Oops. I was much more diligent about stopping from then on.
A year or so later, I was charged with taking my younger sister to an appointment. I was upset for some reason, and my foot was a bit heavy on the gas. I got pulled over. I had my sister get out because we were across the street from the final destination anyway and I didn't want her to be late. I didn't dare look at the cop because I had tears in my eyes from the embarrassment of being pulled over on top of whatever supposed life crisis was going on at the time. I think he took pity on me because instead of writing the ticket for speeding, he wrote one for expired license plates. Huh? I hadn't realized they were expired, and apparently neither had my parents. My dad got stuck with that one.
Since then, I've been pretty careful. Until last weekend, when I ruined a 20 year streak.
On a state road coming into town, there is a section where the speed limit drops from 50 to 35 real fast. I was letting my foot off the gas coming out of the 50 zone but wasn't really paying attention to my speed when I passed the 35 sign. I saw the cop car parked on the side of the road and checked my speed. Oops.
I knew I was busted. I think he knew I knew too. He waited for me to get through the intersection light before flashing his lights and I was already pulling over. My kids were shocked.
Before the cop got to me, the kids asked me if this was my first speeding ticket. I said, "well, no", although technically I guess it was but I wasn't going to split hairs. I told them I had been pulled over many years before as a teenager. When the cop took my license and registration, they had to rat on me.
"This is her first ticket since she was a teenager!" Gee, thanks guys.
The cop grinned, "Yea, I had a few of those when I was that age."
He gave me my ticket, warned me to drive carefully, and that was that.
And then my conscience really hit me.
Here you are, a CUB SCOUT LEADER, and you get yourself a ticket. What happened to being honest?
Um, I am going to pay the ticket. I will accept the consequences, so that counts as being responsible.
You know you're going to the court on the SAME DAY you have your den meeting police station tour, right? What if the cop giving the tour is the same guy who gave you your ticket?
I was in sunglasses when he gave me the ticket. Plus I'll be in my scout uniform later and I'll make sure I pay the ticket in the morning before the tour. It should be fine.
Oh, this should be good.
We all make mistakes. If the Cubs find out, we'll just have a little moment to talk about repentance.
Well, I guess that will have to do. You're not going to break the speed limit ever again, riiiiight?
Okay! I'm off to get in uniform and get ready to teach Cub Scouts about being safe and helping law enforcement. I'll leave the rest of you to enjoy the irony.