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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Seattle Gangster

based on a true story

I was waiting at a traffic light yesterday when a meter maid asked me why I wasn’t wearing a bike helmet. She was in one of those funky meter maid golf carts they drive here in Seattle. This could have been the end of my helmet-less reign of terror, but I’m too quick-witted to have my criminal career undone by a parking ticket jockey. I thought for a few seconds, I pretended I was coughing, then I blew my nose, and then I came up with something. I told her that someone stole my helmet.

This response was brilliant on so many levels that I may need to enlighten you on a few of them. First of all, if someone stole my helmet I couldn’t possibly be wearing it in its present state of stolen-ness. Secondly, seeing that she is an officer of the law—and I’m being generous—it is only through her ineptitude that someone was allowed to steal my helmet. Put the ball in her court. The best defense is a good offense. I'm sure there are some other sports metaphors, or analogies that I could throw around here but I'll move on. Thirdly, I’m pretty sure that I could outrun a meter maid cart; at least I could outdistance one over the course of its battery life. For the rest of the day I fantasized about being involved in a low-speed chase around downtown Seattle as parking violators cheered wildly from their expired parking spots while I was pursued by several unarmed parking enforcers.

Lastly, she was totally hot. Meter maids seem to fall into three categories: Truly frightening old hags, younger men with obvious mom/authority issues, or hot ass younger women. They all seem to have one thing in common and that is an almost complete lack of humor, although this one laughed when I told her not to worry that I wasn’t wearing a helmet because I have a steel plate in my head. This encounter ended with the two of us having sex on the hood of a double-parked limousine. At least that is how my fantasy chase scene ended.

My point here is that I’m a gangster. I have no respect for the law, I play by my own rules, not the ones the Man tells me I have to live with. Like that last line. I know you aren’t supposed to end a sentence with a preposition, but I say, “Fuck that.” Strunk and White can kiss the preposition on the end of my ass. I could have been another middle-class, white male caught up in our criminal justice system, just another helmet law statistic, but I used my wits to get out of a tough jam. Sure, I lied to the meter maid, but if she had pressed the matter, my lawyers would have tied the case up in court for a decade.

Here in Seattle, you can’t buy street cred like that. Before you know it everyone in town will know that I went toe-to-toe with a meter maid and I won. Even if I lost the case in court everyone knows that nobody fucks with helmet law violators in prison. We’re only one step below pet owners who don’t keep their dogs on a leash in the prison respect pecking order. I'd make some HOV lane violator my bitch.

Some dude reading this essay over my shoulder at the library told me that it was totally lame. I told him to shut his cake hole or I’d fuck his shit up. "Hold on, someone is paging me." He puts the pager back on his belt and grabs his phone and holds it up and tries to look menacing. He says he’ll use his cell phone to call 911 before I throw down. Said he has it on speed dial. I tell him I’ll text message 911 with his full description, address, and a list of the bootleg mp3s he has on his iPod. He tells me he’ll spam my web site. Now it’s totally on. To show him I’m not playing I take a picture of him on my phone and then I download it to my palm pilot. That way I can fax it; you can't do that with a phone. I could do a video stream, too. It's a fairly simple process. Yeah, that’s right. Just walk away, bitch.

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