Monday, January 15, 2007

speed traps

My nephew a few weeks ago gave me a radar detector. I don't really NEED one but had been considering getting one anyways, so it's all good. Mind you, I am not by any stretch a speed freak. My days of hot rodding and racing are far FAR behind me, having grown out of them about 15 years ago, but when you own a sports car you are to some degree guilty by asscociation and pretty much looked at more closely and probably justifiably so. That is my theory anyways.

That is not why I bought the car though. Slightly early midlife crisis aside, I bought it because I LOVE the fact that if I NEED to 'get up and go' while pulling into traffic I can now do so safely. I no longer have to take the time to fill out my will ahead of time. My last car(truck actually), was a little 4 cylinder that went 0-60 in 3.2 days. Back then, when it was time to pull into traffic I had only a few options.

1) Get out of the car, open the hood and feed the two hamsters powering it some speed laced kibble.

2)Pull into traffic and pray.

3)Wait forever until a little old lady came putting along the road, and pull out in front of her.

Now, if you have ever been to a used car dealership you know, you KNOW there are apparently billions of 'little old ladies' out there driving. I don't know why they are all giving up driving but apparently they are. Maybe it is some form of protest. Maybe they are unhappy that metamucil has changed its label or something. Maybe they are turning in their Husband's cars. You know, the one that was a mechanic and took good care of it for 42 years?

I am always hearing on the news about the rising cost of prescription medication. Maybe the cost of viagra has gone through the roof forcing them to pawn their cars out of desparation. I don't know why but for whatever reason though, they are all giving up driving at the same time and turning in their cars to be resold.

Anywhoo,,,,,I don't really NEED a radar detector since I tend to go 5-6 mph over the posted speed limit and that is about it.

It is a good thing too.

After a few weeks with this thing I have come to the conclusion that it is NOT a radar detector. The other day I was travelling, and heading through one of the little towns along the way. This town is known for being a speed trap. So much so in fact that there are billboards along the road(that AAA pays for if I am not mistaken),,,,,,one saying something along the lines of "WARNING! you are 3 miles from small townUSA home of the nations most obvious speedtrap". Okay, so maybe the sign isn't THAT bad, but there IS a billboard and that is not nearly as much of an exageration as you may think. Naturally, there is also a competing billboard there that says "Welcome to Smalltown USA , we are NOT a speedtrap, we are 'simply concerned for your safety.' You say tomatoe, I say tomahhhhto.

Speed trap or not is debateable. All I know is the numerous times I have driven back and forth you can bet your very last dime that somewhere in that 2 mile stretch there WILL be a cop with someone pulled over writing them a ticket. I can't say that I feel much for these people. The warnings ARE there, and I certainly don't begrudge the cops for doing their jobs even if they get me someday.

The other day however was different. Instead of having someone pulled over, there was the policeman standing beside his car CLEARLY pointing his radar gun at me as I drove by. This was not a problem. Since I had heard about this for years and see it every single time I travel, this is the one part of the drive where I make SURE I am 5 miles UNDER the speed limit at the very least.

The problem is, this radar detector beeps all the damned time. It has quick beeps, slow beeps, high pitched squeals, low groans. It has letters across the front like "x" and "k" and "s" and at any given time one of them will blink as well. My nephew didn't give me the instructions for it (and being a man I wouldn't be allowed to read them anyways),so I have NO clue what all the different sounds are supposed to mean. I would just hear it, and slow down 2 mph just to be on the safe side.

Ughhhh damned the technology,,,,,,,work just called me in for a bit so I will finish this later.

Have a good day,

If you can't be smart, be a smart ass.

hrrmphh that phrase just popped into my head, and may very well become my new mantra.



The Sarcasticynic said...

Are you talking about Waldo or Starke? Man I never saw such blatant advertising about speed traps than on a trip from Jacksonville to Gainesville via 301.

briliantdonkey said...

SC: "Close enough for government work" as we used to say in the Army. Tis a small world after all, and yes the signs are quite blatant. I am surprised they haven't passed a law banning them personally.


Michael Thomas said...

I too don't go much more than 5-8 over the speed limit. I am averaging, right now, in the neighborhood of 1 ticket every six years. My insurance company wants to pay ME to be insured by them. And honest to god, I don't know why, but in 26 or so years of driving, 3 or 4 of the 4 or 5 tickets I have gotten in my life have been for stop sign roll throughs or inadequate stops before turning right on red. In 26 + years, my insurance company has had to pay for one minor accident that was my fault, and for one accident that was the Effing deer's fault. But watch, my insurance will go up because of bambi. I guarantee it.

mist1 said...

I never speed either. I am a totally responsible driver. Mostly. My goal is to not go to traffic court this year.

Susan said...

I don't speed. I do have an annoying radar detector. It stays turned off. I like to fake the cops out with its presense like I know they know how fast I'm going. There's signs like that in a small town a lil' ways up from home where they have those signs. It stops just shy of "You will be ticketed for 10 mph faster than you were going"..but not much.

James Burnett said...

Dammit, there you go making me jealous. I'm driving a station wagon that pretends to be an SUV in order to trick men into driving it.

And in my civilian machine shop on the Noforfolk (VA) Naval Air Station we used to say "close enough for government work." Unfortunately we usually said it after completing a machining or repair job for a military plane. And in my six years there we didn't lose one bird. Go figure.

Bice said...

Never used a speed detector but live and die by cruise control.

heather said...

re: speedtrap
gotta agree with bice, ny frowns on radar detectors, thank god for cruise control. with my lead foot i'd be in jail by now if not for them. lol
love the new mantra, maybe add it to your header if/when you redecorate your site.

heather said...

ps, mind if i borrow your mantra from time to time? it's got a nice flow to it.