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Yes, I Understand You’re Closing The Courthouse Due To The Shooting...

Updated on January 5, 2010


Yes, I Understand You’re Closing The Courthouse Due To The Shooting But What About Getting An Extension On My Traffic School? – Don’t Get Me Started!

I wrote about it when it first happened. After years of going without getting a speeding ticket, in the course of two weeks I had received two speeding tickets and was not amused. When I called about the first one I just made the deal with the devil and paid what I was told but the second time around everyone convinced me that I should get them to allow me to go to traffic school so that I wouldn’t get any points on my license and my insurance wouldn’t go up. It didn’t lessen the fee but I did it anyway and knew that within the two months I had to complete the five hour class online I could make it happen. Well, of course the days slipped by and while I ignored the whole idea of taking five hours of my time for an online class and test, on the day that it was due I had second thoughts. I thought that perhaps I should try to get an extension. And while I have CNN on at my office and had seen that there had been a shooting at the Clark County Courthouse and one person had died, I guess I just figured it was a different building and I could still get my extension. Oh boy when I don’t get it, I really don’t get it. Yes, I understand you’re closing the courthouse due to the shooting but what about getting an extension on my traffic school? – Don’t Get Me Started!

Look, I give to charities and do my part to help the world out whenever I can but sometimes I’m just dense (or selfish as some may call it). I remember the morning of 9/11 watching the second plane go into the tower on the television at the gate at the airport and then boarding the plane thinking we were going somewhere. Was it that I was just so into myself or was the whole thing just so unbelievable at the time that it seemed more like a movie with special effects than something that was actually happening? I don’t know but I remember feeling pretty stupid when they wheeled us onto the tarmac and then after sitting there for an hour they wheeled us back to the gate. Then they told us we might be able to get out on a later flight. What were they thinking? And good for me for cancelling my travel for that day and going back home.

So when I saw on the news that the courthouse in Las Vegas had a shooting I just sort of ignored it when it came to thinking how it might or could affect me. I looked through all the paperwork I had carefully put in an envelope regarding the citation and found a number at the bottom of one of the sheets where you could call about traffic school. In my dialing, I guess I dialed another department by mistake at the Clark County Courthouse because here’s how the conversation went:

Court: M Department

Me: Oh, uh…um, is this the….

Court: Clark County Courthouse? Yes.

Me: Oh, good, do you handle traffic school?

Court: No. This is the right building but not the right department.

Me: Oh, I must have dialed wrong. Well, do you know who I need to speak to about getting an extension for my traffic school? You see, it’s due today, I know nothing like waiting until the last minute right? But I was wondering if…

Court: Well, you’ll have to call back tomorrow – the right department and no, I don’t have their number. We’re in the process of locking down the building due to the shooting this morning.

Me: Oh, oh my God. I saw that on CNN. Geez, I guess no one there really cares about my traffic school at a time like this. But I wonder if they’ll let me have an extension tomorrow when it’s due today?

Court: I have no idea. (Sounding more than a little impatient)

Me: Okay, I guess you want me to get off the phone so you can get out of there, right? Well, be safe and get out of there, will ya?

Court: Yes (much ruffling of papers and then the line goes dead, I’ve been hung up on)

As I hung up the phone I just laughed at myself. First because I knew that there was no way I was ever taking that traffic school and would no doubt see a huge increase of my insurance but also because here I was trying to be all jovial and the woman on the other end of the line probably wanted to shoot me. Is it just me? Are we all so self centered that when we see someone try to blow up a plane in Detroit we really only think about the fact that we’ll be inconvenienced because there’s no way we’re going to be able to sneak the 5oz bottle of lube past the TSA when they only allow 3oz bottles as carry on? I don’t know about anyone else but I know that no matter how loving I am and no matter how many stray animals I take in or help, when judgment day comes I’ll no doubt have to re-visit this phone call. I can hear it now:

God: Now let me get this straight, you had seen there had been a shooting on the news, right?

Me: Yes.

God: Okay, so even if I give you the benefit of the doubt and go with your claim that you didn’t know it was in the same building, once you got the woman on the phone and she told you they were closing the building, didn’t you get it then?

Me: No, not really. Well, I mean, I got it but I thought she could use a laugh and would get the ridiculousness of me worrying about my traffic school when there was a shooting where she was. I thought it would be a good distraction for her? (My voice trailing up revealing that even I didn’t believe the shit that was coming out of my mouth)

God: (shaking his head) Just look at you, even you don’t believe that shit coming out of your mouth. Yes, I can read your mind and yes, I think you were punished enough by having to pay all that additional insurance for the rest of your life. Welcome to hell – go right in. Just a little joke!

Yes, I understand you’re closing the courthouse due to the shooting but what about getting an extension on my traffic school? – Don’t Get Me Started!

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