Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Standing in line, part II, Bush/Willie Wonka, Movie review

December 4, 2006 was a big day for me! It offered me the opportunity to make some racial demographic observations, and also take care of my most recent speeding ticket, before a warrant was to be issued for my arrest. While I was very guilty of speeding(I was in a hurry to get to some meaningless place, the grocery store) I elected to take care of my problem by enrolling in a defensive driving school. The last time I did this was when my daughter was going to Texas Tech and we both got a ticket at the same time and both became honor graduates of the defensive driving school. A nice father and daughter night out, with lots of bonding. What this does for you is allow you to pay double for the fine, pay for the defensive driving class, and then have it off your record. One good thing happened on this in that a good friend of mine owns one of these schools, so I helped a friend's business and he made sure I passed. This little maneuver gained me an additional 60 days on taking care of the defensive driving and presenting the results to the Municipal Court. WOW, did you just get that, THE MUNICIPAL COURT. Well, this was not my first visit to this kangaroo setup, but I hope it is my last. When I entered the door I noticed a line, not just a line, but a long line. As I took my place at the end of the line I counted the people ahead of me and there were 32 sad souls ahead. I also noticed that no one had a smile on their face, no one seemed happy they were there and now I know how it must feel to enter the first day of prison or at least county jail. It was quite, reverent, and somewhat depressing. But, since I was there and couldn't come back the next day(remember the warrant I mentioned above)I had to take care of my business. I then decided that I would take a demographic survey and see how it compared against the actual race demographics of Lubbock. Here goes: 47% were white, Caucasian(or whatever we are called nowadays), 38% were Hispanic, 13% were black, and .03% were oriental. The interesting thing about this is that these numbers are nearly right on to the actual numbers I have seen on the percentage breakdown for racial demographics in Lubbock. Since this only took me about 15 minutes to take this survey I then explored the idea that the city police must have some kind of quota on issuing tickets, or was this just a coincidence? Let's assume they do have a quota and they leave the building every day knowing that they must catch so many of each demographic, to really do their job. Well on my payment day to the ole Municipal Court they certainly hit it on the head. My next project while in line was to make note of the many signs on the wall and how significant they must be or how they illustrate what kind of place I am hanging out in, with no choice unless to never speed again. I noticed that all of the signs on the wall were first of all, no no signs, with no yes, yes signs. Everything was directed to what you couldn't do while in the court area, i.e. "No profanity or abusive language will be allowed in the Court area, you will be removed if you violate this," "No Cell Phones allowed, they should be turned off immediately upon arriving in the Court," "All minor alcohol violators will report directly to the judge, down the hall," "Be Patient-Expect delays in processing your ticket, since we have a new computer system and we are still learning," "Don't place food, drink or children on the counter,"(funny thing is the counter was only 4" wide, how could you put a kid on this size counter?) One other fine point I noticed was that they had 5 service windows(with steel bars) and only two people manning them. Then one went on a 15 minute break, as the line waited patiently while they ate their donuts, cookies, crackers and root beer. At this point I have been in line for 57 minutes, not saying a word, when the young lady in front of me said something like, "how fast were you going?" What a strange way to break the ice after I had been standing behind her for nearly an hour? But, I bit on the question and said, 42 in a 35, what about you? Turns out she had been real bad, she had a 68 in a 55 AND a 55 in a 45, yes folks, two tickets. She claimed that they were the first tickets she had ever had in her life(she was probably 20) and she got them within a week of each other. Then I told her my sad story that when I was 14 and had just got my license I got a ticket, I didn't mention the fact that that would have been 53 years ago. So, after the two sad stories we were getting close to our curtain call to one of the two windows. I mentioned to her that when you talk while standing in line the time goes by faster and here we are waiting until we are nearly called to get chummy. She then got the tag, and then shortly after I received the "next" call for me to face the music. My final time in line was 1 hour and 7 minutes. I then hit my stop watch to see how long it took me to take care of business and get the hell out of there. While I figured about 1 minute to clear it, the lady found a problem in my paper work and had to go to her supervisor to get a reading on my stuff. She returned, everything was okay and I was out of there in 4 minutes and 59 seconds. The bottom line on all this trivia is why not take advantage of that time that seems to be lost and create some useless piece of work to jabber about on my blog site. Also, it would lead me to explore further the racial demographic approach of our police force.

An interesting article was in the Lubbock AJ today about our President George W. Bush, you know that one who is going to make JB look so good. Well it seems that Dubja invited some kids to the White House for some Christmas stuff. As part of the program for the kids they did a showing of "Willie Wonka." In the photos the president looked confused, until one of the 6 year old guests explained to him what was going on. Oh well, he loses Rummy one week, then the new Secretary of Defense, William Gates says,"what we are doing in Iraq is not working!" I guess that gives him room to be confused.

Move review:"Tenacious D In: Pick of Destiny," This movie is so bad I do not even give it one star. Black is terrible and his side kick is worse, the story is stupid, the acting is stupid, the whole thing truly sucks!! I only stayed through the whole thing because I had gone to "Sideways," last year and nearly left in the first 20 minutes, and it turned out very good. So, I thought this might do the same thing. No way. PLEASE DO NOT GO SEE THIS TRASH!!! Even the good popcorn tasted bad!! This is so bad I was surprised that the screen didn't melt.

Off to see my old high school play a very important football game this weekend. If they win they advance to the State Finals. A BIG DEAL IN WEST TEXAS!!!



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