I spent today in court taking care of a slew of parking tickets. They’d been hanging over my head for a while as a result of cursing out a parking enforcement agent. The guy was about to write me a ticket — he hadn’t started it yet — and I tried to talk him out of it by telling him I’d move my car. He responded by being an asshole. I responded by being myself. I believe the term “meter maid” was used, and I may have referenced his parents and their pride in their son’s occupation once or twice. For the next month, I became his primary target.
Thirty-something tickets later — several of which never even appeared on my car — I’m in court with a folder full of evidence saying my car was registered and inspected at the time the tickets were issued. I managed to get them all dismissed — every single one — but still ended up paying a $15 surcharge and $2 credit card processing fee for each one. $500 lighter for having committed no violation other than losing my temper.
They move you through the system in groups of four, apparently. First, you see the District Attorney, who listens to your bullshit, examines your evidence — provided you have any — then makes a recommendation to the judge. Then you sit down and wait for your name to be called, at which point you see the judge. In my group of four was perhaps the hottest Hispanic girl I have ever seen in person. This made things slightly more palatable. Pretty much everything a beautiful girl does is fascinating — until you get to know her, of course — so this made the time pass a little more quickly.
Next, one of the District Attorneys was engaging in a running monologue about the stupidity of the general public. The best part of this was that the people he was ridiculing had no idea they were being made fun of. The general public being who they are, few people in the courtroom understood this. I caught on, and was kind of hoping I’d be called by this particular DA. I wasn’t.
One guy came up with a shitload of speeding tickets. His goal was to get his fines reduced. The DA offered him a very generous reduction, in both the fine and the points on his license, but this evidently wasn’t good enough, because the guy kept saying he wanted to plead not guilty. The DA, who’s not supposed to give advice, was blatantly telling the guy to take the deal, but the guy was adamant about getting his ninety seconds with the judge.
“You sure you want to take your chances in there?” asked the DA, gesturing toward the trial room.
“Well, you like speed, and you like to gamble. I like your style, Mr. Rodriguez. You’re my kinda guy.”