Sometimes I Think About Lighting my Hair on Fire

I picture a lot of crazy thoughts during the course of my day. These thought cause some serious anxiety. But I figure,  maybe if I put them out into the world, they definitely won’t come true.

I’d like to point out, though, that this isn’t my hypochondria thinking. Instead, it’s the S part of my Myer’s-Briggs results. The part that pictures every possible outcome of a day’s events or even just a fleeting moment.

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So yes, sometimes I do picture lighting my hair on fire. Not like…on purpose or anything. Just in a freak accident involving cooking, candles, bonfires, or lighters. No big deal.

I’ve also imagined a hundred ways I’ll die in a possibly firey car crash. Usually it’s when I’m driving, but sometimes when Brian is driving and I’m eating snacks. I’ve envisioned cars slamming into my car from the front, back, and sides. Falling into a body of water off a bridge (this is why my car has a life hammer).

Some mornings, I see myself tripping and falling onto the train tracks. I try to stand far enough away that the worst injury to ever come from the train platform is a drunken sprained ankle (remind me to tell you THAT story).

When I shower, I just know I’m going to slip and fall one of these days. I’m actually surprised it hasn’t happened yet. I always think about what would happen afterwards. And then I think to myself, maybe I should only shower when Brian’s home. Which, honestly, isn’t a big deal because Brian’s home like 95% of the time I’m home. And I’m sure the loud thud of my body going down in the tub wouldn’t be mistaken as anything normal.

Now that I think about it, guys…maybe those thoughts are kind of morbid. Maybe I should tell you about other disasters I think about. Like the chance of my phone flying into the toilet after…well…pooping. I’m terrified of losing my Internet limb down there and never wanting it back. Years ago, when flip phones were a thing, I dropped a couple in the bathroom, but the toilets were clean.

Or the flooding basement.  I mean, my car has already been flooded. Our basement has kind of flooded. But I picture a giant pool of water rising up from the sump pump well and pouring in through the windows. This does not help me sleep at night.

And really,  sometimes, I just picture myself grabbing a pair of scissors and chopping off my hair. It’s getting so fucking long, but I’m trying to keep it that way for the wedding. We’ll see how that goes.

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What crazy things do you picture happening to you? What are you most afraid of?

PSA: If you’re in Illinois, go vote already.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

I Drove Drunk and Got Pulled Over by a Cop

I’ve done a lot of stupid things in my life. Don’t let that be confused with regrets. I regret nothing. Everything that I’ve done has brought me to the place that I am today. And I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Without further adieu, some of my more idiotic moves…

Cutting a bald spot on the crown of my head during the formative years.

Spending a long New Year’s weekend in Indiana with 5 stoner couples with 6 movies constantly looping and the smell of weed permeating the cabin.

Smoking my very first cigarette…at the age of 23.

Going on a date with (and continuing to date) a guy (who turned out to be a drug addict) whom I met on Craigslist.

Spraining my ankle doing a drunken happy dance.

Quitting my job because my boss asked for my letter of resignation instead of waiting for her to fire me.

Dating the same guy over and over and over again, for three years expecting different results.

And the number one stupidest thing that I’ve ever done: Driving after drinking. Never. Ever. Ever. Do this. A few years ago, I was really really stupid. Really stupid. After several libations on my own one slow Friday evening at Flaherty’s, I decided that I wanted to go sing some karaoke at another bar.

I got drunk, drove to another bar, and got pulled over by a police officer

I tipped my bartender, who didn’t seem to mind that I was a little intoxicated as I was leaving. In her defense, I looked and behaved just fine. But a small part of me knew that I probably shouldn’t have been behind the wheel. But I was bored playing my 207th game of Mah Jong that night, the bar was dead, and I had friends drinking at another bar.

For some reason, unbeknownst to me, I decided to take the main road, instead of the familiar back roads. Driving from one town, through another, to a third town, I noticed a police officer driving behind me. I did a quick check of my surroundings: speed limit (check), seat belt (check), breath (gum? no, but shit, there’s not much I can do about that). There’s no reason that this police officer should need to pull me over. Phew!

I mentally pumped myself up, Just a few more blocks and I would be safely into the next town, out of this cop’s police jurisdiction. The bar was just on the other side of the city line. Come on, just a few more blocks. Don’t fuck up.

The next thing I knew, the all-too-familiar red and blue lights flashed at me from behind. Shit. Shit. Shit. Shit. Shit.

So I re-checked my surroundings. Do not panic. Do. Not. Panic. I looked for my insurance card, which I was infamous for not being able to find. Found one! From last year. Hopefully, it will do.

The police officer walks up to my window and I roll it down.

“Do you know why I pulled you over?”

“No, officer, I’m sorry, but I really don’t.” I genuinely had no clue. To my knowledge, I had done nothing wrong. Well, sort of. Nothing that warranted pulling me over. Plus we all know I’m a terrible liar. PLUS it’s a proven fact that cops can see right through my bullshit when I try to lie.

“Did you know that your license plates expired last month?”

Oh my God, really? “Oh my God, really?” I knew that my shock was evident by the sympathetic look on the officer’s face. I kept babbling, “My dad and I were just talking about this. He had asked me when I needed to renew my plates, but I thought that they weren’t up until April. That’s when I got the plates. I got the car in November of 2006. I haven’t gotten anything in the mail that says I need to renew them. I’m so sorry.”

The police officer looked at me and asked for my license and insurance. I passed him my driver’s license and was holding onto my expired insurance card–waiting to pass it to him. He scanned my license quickly, and never once even took a second look at the insurance card. He handed my license back to me and told me to go get my plates taken care of the next day. He told me it may be a hefty fine for being late, but he would not write me a ticket. He proceeded to wish me a good evening, and to drive safely before he walked away.

This mistake could have cost me everything. Click To Tweet

Not once did he ask me where I had been.

Not once did he ask me where I was going.

Not once did he ask if I had been drinking.

I took that as a sign from God that I should never. Ever. Ever. Drive drunk again. My one free pass, I called it. I was a mere two blocks from the bar that I was heading towards. I panicked and called my best friend, Mark, who was at the airport on his way to some other country. He told me that I was stupid, and I shouldn’t be driving. He told me to calm down and leave my car at the bar that night. So I got to the bar, and called my flavor of the week. He met me at the bar and took me to his place when it closed. The next morning, he got me to my car, and all was well. But holy shit was I freaked out.

I’d like to tell you I never drove drunk again, but that would be a lie. And there would be fewer stories to share with you. For the record, I don’t condone drunk driving nor do I do it anymore. Ever. At all.

Have you ever done something incredibly stupid and gotten caught? Any run-ins with the law that you escaped by the skin of your teeth? Drunk driving stories? Tell me your tales!

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

That One Time I Stole my Best Friend’s Car

Where do I begin?

Huzzah Valley Float TripI guess I’ll start at the beginning…with the float trip. When I was a noob adult, fresh out of college, I would spend a long weekend in the summer with a large group of country boys from Central Illinois and college friends. It started small with about 15 people, but by my last year, it was up in the high 40s. We’d caravan down from Chicago to Missouri in a snowball fashion, picking up more cars along the way.

We had walkie talkie communication between cars, as this was before the days when everyone had a reliable cell phone with unlimited mobile to mobile talk time, back when roaming was expensive and people could go off the grid for whole weekends without Facebook or MySpace or whatever it was that we used. Nobody went into withdrawal or anything either. It was nice. And entertaining. We’d pass each other on the road and make commentary on the other cars/people we were passing.

We’d drink, camp, drink, eat, drink, swim in the river, drink in the river, float down the river, drink on the rafts that float down the river…and so on and so forth listening to country music all weekend long. Basically, we spent an entire weekend hammered, eating breakfasts of Beerios (Cheerios in beer when milk was scarce) and lunches of Pringles and jello shots.

One such float trip, I convinced my dear friend Mark (name changed to protect the innocent) to come along. Little did I know, he hated camping. Drinking, he loved, but when the opportunity to sleep in a bed jumped at him after night one, he was all, PEACE OUT BITCHES.

His best buddy from high school lived close to our campsite and he spent half the weekend with him. Which would have been fine if he returned to the campsite before everyone else had left.

One of my girlfriends and I had ridden down with him from Chicago and on Sunday morning, as everyone else packed up their stuff and rolled out of town, we sat there. Waiting for Mark. The last man standing, the guy who organized the trip stuck around with us for a while longer, waiting for Mark’s imminent return…but it wasn’t happening. We tried to call him, but the campsite was getting zero reception for our phones. The other guy was ready to leave. And we were two twenty-something girls in the middle of Missouri. This was a bad horror movie waiting to happen.

So we did the only logical thing we could think to do. We got into Mark’s car and started driving. The plan was to go somewhere with phone reception (and people in a public place), call Mark and wait.

Except that Mark was driving past us with his friend and kind of freaked out when he say his car.

There was some serious yelling. On both sides. I was clearly pissed that he would leave me stranded in the middle of nowhere, and he was pissed that I “stole his car.” I mean, to be perfectly honest, I can’t blame him. My driving record at the time wasn’t the greatest…To say that the 6 hour ride home was stilted and awkward was an understatement. Sometimes, I wonder how he still loves me. But the best kind of friends forgive, I guess.

Have you ever done anything really crazy and really pissed off your best friend? What’s the worst fight you’ve ever had with a friend?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Remind Me NEVER to Tell You I’m Not Funny Again.

So you remember last week, when I told you guys reasons I wasn’t funny? I thought I was having a bad week, because nothing eventful had happened and I had very little to share in the humor blog world.

Well, let’s just say I jinxed myself…Like a BOSS.

Friday morning…the day after the offending post…

Brian was running a wee bit late as we were heading out the door. I went down to start the car and left him with my keys to lock up. I thought to myself, Maybe I should leave his keys, take the spare and carry my own keys. I need them to get my laptop.

He finally came down with my keys and got in the car. Which gave us 3 minutes to get to the train station and for me to run to the train. I made it. BARELY. We got to the train and I hauled ass…thank God for the woman with the broken leg who requires the lift to get in. She’s my lifesaver. Sort of.

So I sat down in as close to my usual spot as I could get (after walking through the ENTIRE train–I got on at the tail end and sit in the first car) and started reading. 10 minutes before I got to Union Station, Brian texted me to see if I made the train and that he brought my keys down, but didn’t give them to me, so they were in the glove box.

Oh. My. God.

A slew of profanities rang out, causing other train riders to glare at me, as I called Brian.

Me: Are you on the train yet?

Brian: No, why?

Me: I NEED my keys. Need them. Need them. *panic*

Brian: Oh? Calm down. Relax. I can go get them.

I called my boss in a panic, crying, freaking out. Explained all of the possibilities. I realize now that I could have just said, “Hey Boss. Going to be late. Problems with the commute. I’ll be in soon.” Instead I told him my life story and made him listen. Hopefully he couldn’t tell I was in tears.

I called Brian back and told him that I was freaking out because I was going to be an hour late to work and sitting at the train station waiting and waiting with nothing to do but worry. He told me that he could just meet me around lunch time to bring me the keys…

What? Apparently my earlier thoughts hadn’t been verbalized about needing my keys for my laptop. Also, Brian volunteered to delay his trip into the city just so I could have keys to get home (which I wouldn’t really even need!) Best. Boyfriend Ever.

So Brian caught a later train, brought me my keys and I jumped in a cab. I was going to be about 40 minutes late. Not bad.

Now I have a tendency to take cabs when I’m running late or when it’s raining…so I know the regular route and fare. This driver passed the usual turn on Dearborn, and I thought to myself, The other cab drivers usually turn here. I’m pretty sure you can’t turn onto State Street from Jackson. He’s going to take me in a big circle to get a higher fare. Fuck that. He’s getting $7 no matter what. Jerk.

But alas, he turned onto State Street. From Jackson. Which is, in fact, illegal.

And did, in fact, get him pulled over.

I was in a cab that got pulled over.

I was 2 blocks from work, and without a second thought, I paid the driver and tried to get out. The cop was telling him why he was pulling him over, and I kept demanding, “Open the door, I need to leave!”

It played out like a scene in a movie, in which he unlocked the door and I ran. I’m pretty sure I even ran fast. And I don’t run unless I’m trying to catch a train…or I guess run from a cab.

I realized a block later that you probably shouldn’t RUN out of a car that just got pulled over…the police officer might think you did something wrong.

So my luck with the cops can be passed on to anyone who’s driving a vehicle with me in it. And people wonder why I hate driving anywhere.

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

When in Doubt, Ask for Help and DON’T Back Out of the Parking Garage

So, you may have noticed that I’ve been slacking on the awesome recently. I mean…I shared an e-mail from my boyfriend, a ridiculous picture of myself, and a ranty rant about dress codes last week.  I was beginning to think that I was losing my touch.

But then…Like magic…All of a sudden out of nowhere I have 15 new stories to tell you. But today I will only tell you one. Because I have to save some of this goodness for a rainy day. Or a brain block day. Or a writer’s block day. Or my memoirs. One of those.

So today I’m going to tell you about last night’s adventure.

I met up with a girlfriend of mine for dinner after work. We had a general location in mind, but not an actual restaurant. We were off to Rosemont (a mere blocks away from O’Hare, where I briefly daydreamed of jumping on a plane to New Orleans.) I arrived with the intentions of finding a place for us to dine, and then I would tell her where to meet me. Really, guys, this SEEMED like a logical plan. Considering I didn’t know the area all that well and everything in the area on Yelp seemed super pricy.

Finally, I made my way to an area I used to sort of know a little bit. There was a movie theater and a parking garage the last time I was there, but now it’s full of restaurants and such. Fab! I thought. We’ll eat at one of these places. So I pulled into the parking garage without a second thought.

Until I got to the second level. $13? That’s fucking crazy. But there were 3 lanes. One didn’t have a ticket dispenser. So I followed that one to the third level. Where I was met with a ticket dispenser. $13? Fuck that shit. Fuck that a lot.™

Except that there was a sign that read, “No refunds.”

So what’s a girl to do when she’s on the 3rd level of a very coned off area of a parking garage?

Back the fuck up.

Literally. I backed up. All the way down around the corner to the second level. Then I inched my way toward the original ramp…the one lane, steep-as-shit, one way ramp.

And some cars starting to come up, so I pulled forward a bit to let them through.

When it looked all clear, I thought…OK. Let’s do this thing. And I started backing down slowly on the ramp. Until a car starting pulling up. SHIT! I put the car back into drive and maneuvered my way back up to the second level. I pulled far enough out of the way to let the guy through, but he must have seen my distressed look, so he rolled down his window to get my attention.

And I looked over and this teenage boy, who couldn’t have been more than 19 looks at me with pity and asks if I need help. I told him my dilemma (not that I had backed down from the 3rd level though. That shit was embarrassing) and he said that I just needed to take a ticket and pull through to the exit. What the what? Really? Why didn’t I think of that? And then he told me to double check with the guy in charge by pushing the…wait for it…HELP button.

After following both sets of instructions and confirming that I wouldn’t get charged by the annoyed parking garage guy who answered my call for help…I made my way safely out of the parking lot and into a free parking space.

And for the record, guys, my pal had equally as much difficulty getting to the restaurant…As she past the correct exit, got off the interstate too far north, and kept driving north until I asked her whether the sun was on her left or right and then insisted she turn around immediately.

But we had a delightful meal and a really cool Irish pub. And then I almost accidentally went back into the parking garage. I swear I’m not a complete flake. Usually.

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Strange Thoughts I Think Regularly

I think that this is what they call writer’s block in Chrissy’s World. I typically have my posts pre-written and ready the night before…and now…not so much. And then I can’t think of what to write, even though I have had 47.2 blog post ideas to write about over the course of the week.

So I started thinking to myself,self, what’s up? You think all the time…and you can’t think of what to write. Wait. You think a lot of stupid shit, sometimes. This could make an excellent blog post.

Done.

Random Thought Process

When I say something completely random, Brian often asks me where the hell it came from. So I repeat the entire thought process back to him and he’s all like, “Oh. That makes perfect sense…now.” Because it didn’t until I explained what I was thinking. The same thing goes for when I’m Googling random shit on the internet of my fancy phone. This explains why I Google things like: skunk predators, rhythm method, and salmon burgers. (All this week).

But I also have recurring thoughts

We all know I’ve got a little hypochondriac in me. I’ve often thought and probably said a time or two…If I think that I’m a hypochondriac, does that mean that I am?

Along the same lines, I start to wonder about x,y, or z on my body, and think, what if it’s cancer? What if I have MS? What if I have that shaking disease that Michael J Fox has (At this point, I would Google “Michael J Fox disease” and come up with Parkinson’s)? I go through lists of symptoms in my head and Google the results…According to Google, I am almost always on death’s door. But as Katie mentioned, I would kick Death’s ass in a Scrabble match…so maybe I’d be okay.

I used to have a lot of problems with driving. I was a bad driver. Now, I’m a much better driver. When I say that I’m a shitty driver, Brian says, “No, you’re not. You’re a really good, cautious driver. You may have been a bad driver in the past, but not since I’ve known you.” One of the reasons that I am likely such a better driver has to do with the thought process I have whilst driving.I will often envision the potential accidents, problems, etc that could happen, and how I would react to them. I think about hitting the car in front of me, getting rear-ended, or even getting attacked by an evil deer (More on that later).

Actually, long before I was an adequate driver, I used to think about the excuses that I could come up with when I was driving fast. I’m sorry officer, my boyfriend just broke up with me. My best friend just moved to *insert other state here.* My mom is sick. My grandfather just passed away. I just lost my job… I would think about the excuses, so that I was ready for anything. Except when I wasn’t. And that’s when I got pulled over. The officer doesn’t want to hear, “I’m on my way to traffic safety school and it’s my mom’s birthday,” or “I was just running to the liquor store,” or “Sorry, officer, I’m drunk and going from one bar to another.

There was one time, in which I got pulled over for making an illegal right turn on a red light…The officer asked if I knew why he pulled me over. I told him, “No, officer I don’t.” He said that I made an illegal turn on red. “Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry.” He looked at my license and asked, “So how long have you lived in Glen Ellyn?” I was 5 blocks from my parents house… “Pretty much my whole life…” So he asked, “And you didn’t know there was no turn on red there?” My response was priceless. I was going for ignorant and ditzy…”I’m not very observant…” The officer took it as snarky and insolent. Whoops. Ticket.

I often start thinking something ridiculous, weird, dirty, or judgy. And then I’ll think to myself, self, what if someone here can hear your thoughts? Just because you can’t read minds doesn’t mean it’s not possible. What if they can hear every thought in your brain. They know you just checked out that guy’s package. They know you just make a really mean comment about that girl’s outfit. They hear you thinking about how you really want to pick your nose. They know. They know and hear and see all. You can’t hide from this shit. They’re judging younow.

Do you ever have strange thoughts?

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

It’s Not Easy Being a Flake

Sorry about last week kids, our internet was down (so basically it felt like losing an arm or something) so I couldn’t get online to ensure that my blog post went up. I know; I know it’s an excuse, but whatever–I got a job on Friday! So I’ll be joining the world of the truly employed with a full-time salaried gig. Go me!

Anyways, getting a job got me thinking about my first job…

Of course, I was 16 and had no idea what I was doing, yet on Sunday afternoons I would drive an hour up to Long Grove, IL. I would open a cute little boutique clothing shop (all by myself). I would sit there for 8 hours, while visited by maybe 1 or 2 customers all day, have a sack lunch, sit on the phone, and read a book. I don’t even remember the name of the store, but I remember working for several weeks during my junior year of high school.

One particularly rainy Sunday, I turned off all of the lights in the store, set the alarm, and locked the door. I was ready to get home and have some dinner. I ran quickly out to my car and unlocked the doors before jumping into Melba Toast, the Explorer. I put the key into the ignition and…nothing. My battery had died. Oh. Crap.

I think that I had my Nokia brick with a hot pink sparkly faceplate, which I used to call my mom. After she flipped out on me for my not-so-brilliance (assuming that I had left a light on or something–which I still claim to this day that I hadn’t), she made me call her pal Kay, who owned the shop.

Kay told me that she would send a Long Grove shop owner friend of hers to help me out. A half hour later, a strange man (strange is relative in this scenario, as he was merely a man I didn’t know) pulled up into the parking lot with connector cables. He jumped my battery and followed me half way home to make sure my car was running alright. I finally made it home, and got a decent amount of slack from my family.

For Christmas that year, I got a nice shiny new set of jumper cables for Melba Toast. I only wished they were pink.

Wants

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Speeding Excuses

I heard on the radio that the excuse most frequently used by speeders is: “I have to go to the bathroom.”

I’ve used that one…sort of. Let me give you a hint: It didn’t work. My boyfriend at the time was actually speeding so we could get to a bathroom, so I could pee…$250 (Hello, Wisconsin) and 40 minutes later, I finally got to pee. Ironically, the words I said, not 5 minutes before getting pulled over, were, “Don’t speed too much. I don’t want to be the reason you get pulled over.”

Funny, most excuses don’t work for me. My mom on the other hand seems to get speeding tickets pulled away on a silver platter.

Excuses that apparently work

My mom was pulled over on the way to the University of Chicago for her first Interferon treatment. When the police officer pulled her over, she said to him, “I’m on my way to my first chemo treatment!” and proceeded to cry. Whilst essentially true, and genuinely upset about the prospect, this excuse got her off the hook.

Many years before, mom was driving with me in the front, and my baby brother asleep under blankets in the way back of the station wagon. I’m not sure if she was pulled over for speeding or something minor, but the police officer saw me in the front without a seat belt (at 4 or 5) and asked why I wasn’t wearing a seat belt. My mom exclaimed, “I’m a terrible mother! I’m sorry officer.” The officer never noticed my brother illegally seat belt free in the far back…and I put my seat belt on. Again, mom was told to move on free and clear.

Another time, while cutting through a neighborhood near ours with a “Dead End” and “No Outlet” sign, mom was pulled over. After yelling at the police officer (AKA bitching) about how our neighborhood has cut throughs all the time and ranting that there was no fancy sign for OUR neighborhood across the street, the police officer again set my mother on without so much as a warning.

Excuses that apparently don’t work

Crying. I’ve tried it. It got me no where but yelled at.

Playing dumb: A few year ago, I was attempting to quickly get home from the grocery store while cooking dinner. I had run out to get a few things to add, and was trying to make good time. I pulled out and made an illegal right turn on right a few blocks from my house. I got dinged and the police officer asked if I knew what I had done. I told him that I didn’t, but he proceeded to ask, “How long have you lived in Glen Ellyn?”

“My whole life, officer.”

“And you didn’t know there was no turn on red there?”

“I’m not very observant.” Whoops! I was trying to come off as ignorant…but apparently came off as snotty and smart-ass. Note to self: dumb people don’t say words like observant in the proper context.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Car Trouble

Car Trouble

My Pontiac Sunfire

My first car was a 1994 Ford Explorer called Melba Toast.  My second car was a 1998 Pontiac Sunfire.

Sometimes, I would forget that I drove a tiny two door Pontiac that was closer to the ground than my ankle. Sometimes I still thought that I drove a beast like Melba Toast, the explorer, or Lurch, the affectionately named GM catering van, that I frequently carted food around while on the clock during my stint as a catering manager… But then I would remember I drove Dawn, the incredible lean mean teal driving machine.

One Thirsty Thursday night in February of 2008, I forgot that my tiny little car probably couldn’t just plow through a little bitty pile of snow in the middle of Main Street. I barely took the time to think about what I was doing. I automatically assumed that I could handle the mini mountain of soft white puff. A minute after my decision was made, I had to call Jeff. Here’s how that went:

Ring Ring. Answer:

“Yes, we’re here! Get here already!”

“Oh I know…I’m almost there. You should come outside.”

“Just come in.”

“No really…Come outside and laugh at me.”

**Jeff walked outside**

Still on the phone with me, he asks incredulously, “Are you serious? I guess you need help.”

I confirm with a pleading, “Help!”

“Be right back, I’m going to need backup.”

I sat waiting patiently…It’s not like I could have gone anywhere. Jeff returned momentarily with my best pal Mark, and one of the bar’s regulars, Mikey. Who knew that I really could stop traffic? The passing cars all stopped and stared as Jeff, Mark, and Mikey tried pushing my car out of the snow. When this still did not work, a very nice plow guy came and helped until I was safely in the bar parking lot.

Of course, that was just one of many Winter: 1; Chrissy: 0 scenarios.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

The One that Nobody Knew About

Four moving violations in almost as many months…

Two speeding tickets.

Two accidents.

One attorney.

One court date scheduled for January.

And a partridge in a pear tree?

You’d think I would have learned my lesson. You’d think I would have slowed down. Alas, the rules of the road seem more like a guideline than a rule book, and police officers seem to pick and choose who they pull over for which reasons.

It was mid December. I was in Peoria after being offered a job with JC Penney, selling window treatments, and I had just signed the lease on an apartment. As I was driving back to my hotel from my soon-to-be-new-home, I was jammin’ out to the radio and following the car in front of me. (Not that I knew him or anything, just that my car was behind his) I was a little surprised at how fast he was going, but I was almost keeping pace with him. I figured no big thing. If he’s speeding, I should be alright.

WRONG!

I’m not entirely sure how fast I was going, but it was fast enough to draw the attention of those dreaded blue and red lights. Oh God, Oh God, Oh God.

I started crying. Just bawling my eyes out and thinking.

What do I do? I might lose my license after this. I can’t lose my license. Maybe the officer will have pity on me if I’m crying. I can’t lose my license. I need it for this job. Oh God, I just signed a lease. I wrote a big fancy check for a deposit. Oh God.

The police officer interrupted my thoughts by knocking on the window.

“Ma’am, do you know why I pulled you over?”

Through sobs, I managed to verbalize, “I sniff was speeding sniff

“Yes, can I see your license and proof of insurance?”

I handed him the ticket I was driving on and proof of insurance, and let out a wailing sob.

“Stop crying! What is wrong with you?” No joke, he actually said this to me.

I said through my obnoxious crying, “I’m already on supervision, officer. I don’t know what I’m going to do. I just accepted a job down here.”

He looked at me, angrily, and said, “And yet you continue to speed…”

All I could think about was how mean he seemed.

“I didn’t even realize that I was speeding, sir. I was keeping pace with the car in front of me.”

“Do you have a speedometer?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Does it work?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Well, then learn to read it.”

With that I let out another wail. The officer walked away to look up my info and write me my fifth ticket in 5 months.

He returned and said to me, “I’m giving you a ticket. Stop crying. You had a speeding violation AND an accident in the last few months. You need to slow down. When you see the speed limit sign, you drive 10 miles under whatever it says, do you understand me?”

“Yes, sniff officer.”

“Have a good day, ma’am.”

The bastard walked away and drove off. I sat in my car for almost an hour. In that time, I saw the evil police man pull over two other people. Jerk.

As I was sitting in my car, I needed to make a few phone calls. First, I called the woman who I had just signed the lease with. I told her not to cash my check and to hold my lease.

Then, I called my attorney and asked for her opinion on the likelihood of me losing my license. After some expected exasperation, she said it was a definite possibility, but she would try to help me as best she could.

I made the decision to call the job that I had accepted and tell them that a family emergency had come up, and I would not be able to take the position. I called my once-future landlord to tell her I would not be moving in, and cried a little bit more.

When I got home, I told my family, friends, bar patrons, and anyone else who asked that the job had fallen through. The woman who I was to be replacing had passed away (this was true), and I told the world that they needed someone to start immediately, which I could not do (obviously, not true). The world believed me. The world felt sorry for me. Not a damn soul (sans my attorney and the evil police officer) knew about this fifth ticket.

As it turns out, I had a really good attorney. She moved my court dates so that the two accidents would be on the same day at the same place. She handled everything. I had to take a hit for the final speeding ticket in Peoria (no supervision, nada), but it was the only hit I took on my record. I managed to keep my license, because the first accident ticket was “not guilty” and I was allowed to receive supervision a third time for the second accident (the guy in car number one showed up to vouch for my guilt–apparently he was claiming medical injury).

In short,

Five moving violations.

Two accidents on record.

Two tickets on record.

One license still in tact.

And I never did move to Peoria. Which turned out to be the best blessing in disguise.

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