Sunday wasn’t the best of nights. I would have been dragging anyway, thanks to the Philly trip, but I was feeling crappy all weekend, and feeling worse at work.
We also had the newsroom’s first random power outage of the spring; we were down for only 90 minutes or so, but that was enough to set me up for what happened later.
Which was this: just after 11, we heard a call about a bad accident in the northern reaches of our coverage area. On a normal Sunday, I wouldn’t probably wouldn’t chase a call that late, because we’d be too close to deadline.
But with the delay from the power outage, I had time to hustle up to the scene, spend a couple minutes collecting whatever information I could and get back in time to write something.
So I went. I found one of my favorite cops who was willing to help me out, and I sped back to the office.
I was moving quickly enough that I didn’t notice the cop who was watching traffic around the corner from our office. In fact, I didn’t see him until he was behind me, lights on, pulling me over in front of our building.
He asked for the license and the rest; as I was digging that stuff out of the glovebox, I did something I’ve never done before: I asked him for a break.
Every single time I’ve been pulled over for speeding — including this one — I’ve deserved it. And I’ve always felt that arguing about a ticket was A) a little pointless and B) liable to piss off someone who could make my life very difficult. So I’ve never done it.
I didn’t do it Sunday, either; I did ask the guy if I could have 10 minutes or so to get my story done. I said the copy desk was holding the paper for me, and I had to get my story filed; I even offered to let him come inside while I wrote.
The cop, a guy I recognized but don’t know, smiled just a tiny bit. “You know why I pulled you over, right?”
“Oh, yeah,” I said. “I was flying.”
“Yes, you were,” he said. “Take it easy, OK?”
My Sunday to that point had pretty much sucked. After that, though, I had no room