Disclaimer: I have a huge amount of respect for police officers in America and the job they do everyday for all of us. I really did get pulled over this morning but this is the Mimi Lenox version of the morning's events. If you're a regular reader you'll know which parts are pencil skirt padded.
Left hand on top of the steering wheel. Right hand unscrewing a red-glittery tube of brand new mascara and finishing a lipstick line. Left hand turning right. Right hand spilling coffee and adjusting
radio annoying pantyhose left side mirror. Typical morning commute. I overslept - a fact I will blame on late night blogging. May I blame YOU? OK. I will.
Ten minutes away from music-land, one side of my face put on, the unglamorous eye on my calendar, the back of my hair not combed and three fingers on the rear view mirror. Which hand I will not tell you on the grounds that I may need a witness to say otherwise in court.
See the nice police car. Pass the nice police car. See the nice police car pull in behind me. Ignore the nice police car. Applying red rouge. Perfect! How did I miss the speed limit sign under all those flashing blue lights?
I think this is where I'm supposed to pull over.
Looking back I have to ask myself. WHY do I do such things? For instance, should one be the first to speak when one is pulled over in front of God and everybody in one's own teensy-weensy hometown? Isn't there a social protocol to these events?
Apparently, not for me.
Instead of stopping on the side of the road like criminals are supposed to, I pulled into someone's driveway and hid behind a huge green bush. Really. That was my first mistake. The tail of the police car was sticking out into the road.
It gets worse.
I leaned my head all the way out the window (I was impatient and in a hurry you see) and said "Hellooooo??" in an anybody-home-kinda-voice.
They were not amused.
I could have ordered three ham biscuits at the drive-thru and eaten them by the time it took them to get to my car window. I was already almost late. Panic.....just a bit......began to set in. And only half my face was done. Panic!
"Do you know why we pulled you over, ma'am?"
"Too much mascara?" I thought.
Let's be clear. I've spent most of my life cultivating the wide-eyed look.
This morning, hands-down, was an award winning performance of said facial theatricals. Here's how you do it: Just enough faux panic to show vulnerability but not enough to feign stupidity. Intelligence is always more attractive. Even in the face of two armed (and handsome) men who inspected my vehicle from top to bottom and must have been wondering why a woman would need three pair of knee-boots in the backseat and a week's worth of unopened mail. But that wasn't the problem.
This was the problem.
I hate to be called ma'am. That just hurt my feelings. You can insult my tailpipe, my slow signaling blinker and even the bug on my windshield, but do not - I repeat - DO NOT under any circumstances......call me ma'am. Do you know why we pulled you over, ma'am?" And they did it again. Both of them. One at a time. And then together. Dueling duets.
Use your lightning fast pencil brain and E.V.A.L.U.A.T.E. the question, Mimi, carefully, before you formulate the lie.
Sometimes it only takes a word to disarm a man.
Too bad it didn't work this morning.
Plan B: The look is not working, pencil skirt, do something else.
"You were going 45 in a 35 mph zone, ma'am."
Use your rotary-dial-speed pea-sized pencil brain to F.O.R.M.U.L.A.T.E the response, Mimi carefully, before you evaluate the deep do-do you are in. When all else fails, tell the truth. And with only one side of my face on, what choice, really, did I have? The curse of the blog. So I said in an emphatically confessional quiver....
"I was going whatever speed you say I was, Officer. I'm sorry. It won't happen again."
(Running in the back taskbar of my mind....."Yes, boss. I'm in jail. I got arrested for hiding behind a bush on my way to class....Yes, boss. I think this qualifies as an emergency. ..Plans? You want to know where my emergency plans are? I'm in the slammer!! And I haven't even combed my hair. (sobbing now for effect) Yes, boss. I'd say that qualifies as an emergency.")
Sometimes it only takes one tear to unarm a man.
Too bad it didn't work this morning.
"Do you know what the speed limit is, ma'am?"
Use your slow-turning one brain cell left in your half-painted eyelash colored cranium (formerly known as intelligence) to F.A.B.R.I.C.A.T.E the answer. Carefully, before you
cry wail rain crocodile torrents down your face and ruin your makeup again.
"The speed limit is whatever speed limit you say it is, Officer. Are you gonna shine the light on me?"
What is the other officer doing with the flashlight? Why is a flashlight needed at 8:00 am? Oh. God. It's one of those secret CIA infrared ultraviolent gadgets I've heard about.
"Can I see your license, please?"
Even with the one cylinder I had left I knew better than to reach in the bag. But I really had no choice. One peanut. Two peanuts. Three M&M's, six bobby pins, a bandaid stuck to a banana, a bottle of water, one hair dryer and a separate purse for the really important stuff like driver's license.
I'd ordered a pizza late last night and had to present my ID to the delivery guy with the check. It was still on the kitchen counter at home. Right beside the scrapped off anchovies and onions.
No, Boss. The charges did not multiply because I was a smart-aleck thank you very much for the vote of confidence. They accumulated because I like pepperoni.
Sometimes it takes only one simple truth to unarm a man.
Thank goodness it worked this morning.
What does one do when faced with impending incarceration? Covered with banana slime, black mascara, and chocolate covered hairpins, I looked up at the gorgeous well-toned hunk of a man and did what any self-respecting pencil skirt would do.
"I'm gonna be late to my own class," I said. "Will you call my boss?"
He has not had his second cup of coffee yet and I'm not on hall duty where my itty bitty boots belong and despite my knee-deep knuckle-headed propensity for getting in trouble before I even get to work and my apparent inability to derail this run-on sentence and flaunt the wide-eyed jewels I've been cultivating all my life I can still hear him through the cellphone that is of course message beeping beside the reeking anchovy stained driver's license both still lying in sin on the counter top, "I really don't like getting phone calls from jail, Miss Pencil Skirt. It doesn't look good on your permanent record and furthermore...." Oh forget my permanent record, Boss. I'm already working on a new record."
And before I could blink, what was left of my micro-mini eyelash attached to the remaining millimeter of pride that went out the window when a carload of kids in my class drove by and waved to me through the blue lights and bananas, I heard...
"Have a nice day, ma'am."
"Thank you, sir."
I started the car and backed out of the bush. Miraculously, I would make it to work on time, dodging a bullet of wrath; happy that I'd not had to whip out the wily lash -batting arsenal I'd inherited and pruned (yeah right. We all know I did that) and turned to back out of the curious homeowner's driveway when it occurred to me to never....ever....ever...again....will I......OH NO! NEVER again will I see you. WAIT!
Are you single?!
I think tomorrow morning I'll return to the scene of the crime. Just in case I dropped my mascara or something......
Note: I did not get a ticket! Whew.