You may find this hard to believe…but I was sitting at a frequent haunt of mine a few weeks ago (as I am wont to do) when I had occasion to stop a very nice lady. A very nice lady I had stopped just four days prior. Driving the same car. On the same road. Violating the same speed law (and one mile an hour faster at that).
(FYI…this picture has nothing to do with this post short of having the same title. It was pure coincidence that Richard Marx came up in lineup (don’t ask) this week and I thought a search on “repeat offender pics” with this result was God telling me it’d be funny…to at least two people…of which I am one. Yeah, you’d think the Big Guy would have more on his mind. I don’t pretend to understand.)
The conversation went a little something like the following:
MC: Good morning…do you know why I stopped you?
SGL (Surprisingly Gracious Lady): Because I’m guilty twice in one week.
MC (a bit confused): How’s that?
SGL: You stopped me last week.
As I searched the vast database that is my memory (read: stared off into distance…possibly drooled a bit), I noticed a yellow slip of paper peeking out from beneath some other paperwork on the front passenger seat.
MC: May I see that?
SGL rather sheepishly handed me the copy of the ticket I had written her four days earlier.
MC: I’ll be right back, ma’am.
Now, you may be thinking what a cold-hearted bastard I am (have we met?), but let’s think about this for a second. Within a four day period, she has violated the same law twice. Not to mention, she was even faster the second time! Seems to me she hasn’t quite learned the lesson I had worked ever so hard to teach her four days ago. Consequently, out came the cite book and the pen and a-scrawlin’ I didst go.
Here’s why I dubbed this lady SGL…
MC: Okay. I need you to sign the yellow highlighted portion at the bottom.
SGL (sighs): You know, I’ll be the first to thank you for what you do and being here on this road. It was my fault and I need to pay more attention.
MC: Thank you very much, ma’am. I truly appreciate it.
I had cited this lady twice in a four day period. She took responsibility and her consequences like an adult. She neither whined nor blamed anyone else. I felt bad for a second…then the darkness inside of my tin heart ate the pity and I was all better.
That notwithstanding, though, I really did appreciate her sentiment and wish more of the people I deal with on a daily damn basis would have the decency to pull their heads out of their collective asses long enough to suck it up and be adults about what they did.
Thank you, SGL, you are a shining example to the rest of us…