Thanks to all our readers for your help on my paper re: Native Land Allotments in Natick, Mass. Really appreciate your help, and your patience as I get through finals. Don't worry: everything is complete on Monday. I'm in an airport in Nate's future home, so I decided to write you. Here goes:
My sister is furious about a recent parking ticket.
She's especially mad because she returned to the empty parking meter within two minutes of dropping in a nearby store to get change, only to return to the car, and the meter maid writing the ticket. "No, no, no--I'm right here. I have change!"
"I'm only doing my job," the meter maid replied, handing the pink sheet to her.
My sister is five months pregnant and has a one-year old on her hip. I proclaim: her dedication to baby-making does not give her permission to break the law or avoid slotting loose change in the meter. But the meter maid did not show any compassion for my sister or her circumstance when writing out the ticket. And this pissed my sister off. She made a scene on the street and promised the meter maid, "I'm going downtown to report you!"
All that effort, and she's stuck with a $20 ticket. But my sister is one of her word: she followed-through on her promise to the meter maid and sought out the supervisor o' meter maids at the City-County Building. Instead of finding him/her, my sister got the next best thing: her court date is scheduled on June 4th to protest. Stay tuned to the blog for how this story ends. . .
We all have these "it's not fair" stories about traffic and/or parking tickets, right? A roommate told me a story about how he got a ticket (but shouldn't have) for turning left on a red light. Another friend got a speeding ticket for eluding a tailgater (but it was to avoid a larger traffic danger). Buy me a beer and I'll tell you a boring story about my own experience getting a ticket while delivering oranges at Christmastime.
I'm pretty sure that everyone (at least occasionally) exceeds the speed limit, rolls a stop sign or doesn't slow to 20 mph in a school zone. While these laws were designed to protect us all, sometimes we, as busy blog readers, don't have time to pay appropriate heed to them all. So when we get caught, why don't we just pay the fine and move on? Why the big deal?
You're going to say, "money." Yeah, I don't have $150 bucks (speeding) or even $20 bucks (parking) to throw out the window, either. But I don't think it's about money for most. Instead, it's about getting caught.
Here's my solution: I save myself some heartache and angst by assuming that once a year, I'm going to get caught. I am going to get caught, and pay a ridiculous fine for something that most everyone does every day. It's that simple. If I ever made a budget, I'd budget 'Tickets' line item into my annual operating costs. If you're getting more than one ticket a year, it's probably time to reevaluate some things.
What do you think about this 1 ticket/year as a threshold? Do you think it should be more/less often??