The blue light special.

on December 11, 2008 in Ze Bloggy Goodness with 13 comments by

I told you a few weeks ago about our little Study Buddy group. My friends Derek and Justin are both in seminary at Vanderbilt so they have to write these SERIOUSLY long and intense papers. [The brains at the table are unstoppable. I bring down the IQ significantly. But I bring the beauty factor up significantly too, so it all balances out in the end.]

And much to my advantage, the dudes work better at night. So about once a week, we head to the Vandy Student Center where we sit and focus on our computers and whatever is in our headphones; once an hour or so we take a two minute break to discuss important things like premier league soccer and middle names.

And last night, latkes. Because that’s what the Jewish center was offering students for free. The boys said they were delicious. I passed- the idea of eating fried potato at 1:45am seems “counter productive” to me.

And with that history in place, here is where the story picks up. Because as this was unfolding, I actually texted Justin and said, “Moments like this are EXACTLY why I have a blog”.

So I got there first last night, around 10:30pm. In just a few minutes, I see Justin drive up and make a u-turn to park behind me. Within one second, literally, blue lights are flashing and a Vandy cop is on his tail.

And if you know me at all, you know my immediate reaction was PANIC. Was I being pulled over? Nope. Was I doing anything illegal? Double nope. But because I have a deep DEEP fear of police, my heart began to race and my palms began to sweat.

Then I get a text from Justin- “I’m here”.

Huh. Ya don’t say? You know what? I actually noticed. Because at this point, not only has he been pulled over, there is a cop at his door, the passenger door, and another squad car pulled up next to him.

[Wow. Vandy cops take illegal U-Turns REALLY seriously.]

Because the cop made Justin GET OUT OF THE CAR. At this point, I’m not laughing at all, but I am grateful for this ole blog cause I’m thinking “this is going to be a GREAT story”.

Here’s what’s running through my mind as I see my friend (and Bible study leader, by the way!) walking a straight line heel to toe:

  1. If Justin goes to jail, I do not even know where the jail is. This could be a problem.
  2. His fiance is going to KILL him.
  3. I know he’s sober, he just led our small group one hour ago. And he doesn’t drink.
  4. Will I have to go to jail because I know him? [Irrational, but cops have that effect on me.]
  5. I hope they don’t search my car for drugs. I mean, I don’t have any, but knowing my nerves, I would cry so much that they would think I do.
  6. Do I really know these guys as well as I think I do? Maybe he IS a criminal.

In the end, he was released into my custody with just a ticket for being a crappy driver. Which I will never [no not ever] let him live down.

And really, there is no point to this story except to say I am still a little unnerved from the whole experience. And I love my study buddies.

What about you? Ever been pulled over? Ever walked the straight line? Don’t tell me too much, seriously. I will get all sweaty and nervous just reading about it.


  1. Southern Gal
    posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 8:44 AM  |  reply

    Stopped three times for speeding. No tickets. No warning tickets. Just a verbal, “Slow down.” Seriously, my husband says it’s because I am a woman.

    I was so nervous the first time I was pulled over because it was at night on a dark road. The second time I passed the cop on the road and HE made a U-turn to come back and get me. I knew it and had pulled over and had my driver’s license and my registration card out the window when he walked up. (Excuse: just moved, trying to get to work on time since I didn’t know how much extra time I would need. Totally true.) Third time the policeman was training another guy and said since it was only 5 miles over he would let me go. (This was on the same road as the second warning. I’m very good on that road now.)
    I still shake everytime I see a blue light somewhere behind me (or in front of me).

  2. John Ireland
    posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 9:23 AM  |  reply

    an adventure, indeed.

    so…from whence comes your intense fear of police officers?

  3. posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 9:29 AM  |  reply

    When I was in high school, I went with a couple of friends to one of those teen club things they had at the time. One of the guys had managed to secure a fake ID and had become a regular at his local adult beverage purveyor, so we had a “supply” of beverages before entering said club. I remember that we parked across the street from the club and had to cross traffic to get to the club. After crossing the street, we were met by an off-duty officer working security but in his police uniform. He stopped us. Something about how we crossed the street didnt’ sit well with him. He then ran us through a field sobriety test. I had to walk a straight line, touch the tip of my nose, and then he made me say the ABCs backwards. That was the hardest part given the combination of nervousness and adult beverage-to-blood coursing through my system. But after we all passed, he let us go into the club. Managing to avoid consequences there was probably not the best thing that ever happened, but it makes for a decent story some 21+ years later.

  4. candace
    posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 9:34 AM  |  reply

    have you annie? Child of God?

  5. posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 9:51 AM  |  reply

    Annie, my husband and I found you through JJ’s blog. Love your writing! It’s like we are having a conversation. Anyhow, I resonate with your fear. My dad is a retired Los Angeles County Deputy and one of the nicest people you will know. I never had this fear when living in LA. When my family and I moved to smallish town TX I was suddenly the target of the local police. I have been pulled over several times – once for wearing my seatbelt “improperly.” Now, I sort of panic each time a see a squad car. No real sense in it, I have friends in the department, but I still feel slightly short of breath when I see the lights.

  6. posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 10:32 AM  |  reply

    I got pulled over one time for my tags being expired…which I told my husband 100 times to put my new tags on…. when the cop pulled me over, I told him he better go arrest my husband! He just laughed & told me to go home & land into him even more!

  7. posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 10:47 AM  |  reply

    I have received a surprising number of speeding tickets, although the pace has slowed down the last few years. I have very rarely been stopped without getting a ticket. Puppy dog eyes have been very ineffective.

    I have, however, successfully eluded police officers twice: once in my hometown and once in Athens. At home, I flew by a cop, didn’t slow down when I saw him turn around, zoomed into a parking lot, and ran into the grocery store. I saw him patrolling the parking lot, so I hung out in the frozen foods for awhile and then went on my merry way.

    I am not proud of this… well, okay, I’m proud of this.

  8. posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 11:23 AM  |  reply

    Jake’s comment made me think about an occasion when I was with a group of people and the driver of the car eluded an officer after we too passed him while exceeding the posted limits. He was headed in the other direction. We raced into my friend’s neighborhood and down the hill, killing the lights on the station wagon, tearing into his driveway and pulling way up the driveway out of sight from the street. We all ducked down in the car until the officer drove past.

    The friend? You know him. We went to high school and college together. He was in my wedding. I was in his. I told this story and a couple of others at a going away dinner we had for him before he and his family moved away (like you did). Stories like this help him relate to the people he spends most of his time ministering to. Any crazy things they’ve done, he probably has too (or worse).

  9. posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 11:31 AM  |  reply

    I was actually just bragging the other day that I have had my license for almost 10 years and never, not once, been pulled over. Of course, the next day I got pulled over. I was driving home from a scrapbooking event (so you know how crazy I am) at midnight — it was my first time getting out of the house since having my baby — It was rainy, and quiet and I was quite sleepy (new baby=lack of sleep) I remember thinking to myself, man this guy in front of me is going slow, I should probably get around him – when all of a sudden i saw the flashing lights behind me. I always thought I would panic when I got pulled over (I hate cops, I’m a rule follower and I hate getting in trouble) but I think all the sleepiness kept me quite calm. He asked if I knew why he pulled me over and I replied I had no idea (I knew i was going slow – I had just been thinking about how I was going far too slow remember) he replied that I was following the guy in front of me WAY too closely and he could give me a ticket but was going to let me off with a warning . . . I wanted to tell him that studies show that sleep deprivation has the same effect as drinking, so all new moms should probably be banned from driving . . . but I was a little scared and (did I mention) sleepy. So I thanked him for the whole no ticket thing and drove home. The end.

  10. posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 2:42 PM  |  reply

    never been pulled over, have only gotten one ticket (a minor fender bender years ago). lol why r u afraid of the plice?? u don’t have to answer if it bothers u!! 😉 much love…

  11. posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 3:40 PM  |  reply

    You could write about the phonebook and it would be hilarious. I think I’ve amassed seven speeding tickets in eight years. My first was for going 100 in a 65. I don’t even know how that happened. I didn’t even know my car could go that fast. I was 18, on my way back to college from a weekend at home, no less.

    People keep telling me to cry and I’ll get out off it. It’s never worked. I’ve cried all seven times. Nothing. I guess I’m not a cute crier.

    I did get pulled over once for going like five miles over the speed limit. I was on my way to Jackson, Miss., from Birmingham, Ala., when my sister was having her first child. I used that as an excuse and I got a warning.

    One point for the sister!

  12. posted on Dec 11, 2008 at 11:56 PM  |  reply

    Don’t ya just love great blog stories…at other people’s expense? Sorry Justin.

  13. posted on Dec 18, 2008 at 5:54 PM  |  reply

    I was on my way to school a couple months after I got my license. I was late, and this woman in front of me was driving a full two miles an hour. We got to a red light, and I decided to switch lanes. So I did, only I didn’t turn the car far enough to the left. I hit the back end of her car with my side mirror. She started screaming and cursing and throwing all sorts of hand gestures my way. I was pretty terrified considering it was still dark out, I was in a bad area, and this was first accident ever (Not just the first one where I was driving. My first accident EVER.)

    So anyway, we pull off to the side of the road and she continues to scream as I just cry and cry and cry.

    So the cop finally arrived. I had never spoke to a cop in my life, so that just really added to my feelings of horror.

    So the lady started talking to him and was calling me all sorts of very classy names, and the cop gave HER a piece of his mind.

    I never feared cops again.

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