So this morning, Jim's sitting at a red light, 5 or 6 cars back. A car somewhere behind him decides she needs to be in the left-turn lane, and crosses the double-yellow line to get ahead of the long line at the light, passing him in the process. So, he pulls her over.
"Can I see your license?"
She hands it to him with a great, inconvenienced sigh.
"Do you know why I pulled you over?"
In a snotty tone, "No, not really."
"Well, you crossed a double yellow line back there."
"So, I do that every day."
Here's the point at which I must pause and ask, with all seriousness, did you REALLY just admit to breaking the law, EVERY DAY? I know people have all these theories about evading the cops, not getting a ticket, and such, but this really isn't the way to go about it!
Jim says to her, "That doesn't make it legal."
She replies in a huffy tone, "Lots of people do it all the time!"
Jim replies, "Still doesn't make it legal. I'll be back in a minute with your ticket."
Are you kidding me? "Officer, I killed my friend, but 183 other people did it last year!" Look, if you are going to be an idiot and break the law, at least be humble about it. I have probably done what this lady did, once or twice. Not a lot, mind you, because I'm not in the habit of driving into oncoming traffic, whether or not I'm in a hurry. But you bet your ass if I got pulled over doing it, I'm not going to be rude to the officer in an effort to get out of it.
Here's another example: Jim pulled over a guy whose driver's license had expired. He punches in the numbers, the guy's license has been expired for two weeks. Easy thing to overlook, right? So Jim asks for it, says "You know your license expired two weeks ago?"
The guy looks at Jim with that 'oh shit' expression and says, "FUCK!"
Now, this guy's in his 50s, so one might argue that he's been renewing his license a lot in his life. But on the other hand, when it only rolls around every four years, it's easy to see how that can slip by. So Jim hands him his license back and says "Just get it taken care of. Have a nice day."
So I guess the moral of the story is obvious. Don't break the law? Duh. But what I'm really getting at here today is that your attitude is everything, especially when dealing with someone who has power over you. Most people would learn pretty quickly if they spoke rudely to their boss. But why does it make it OK to be rude to anybody else?