Wednesday, June 20, 2007


Prisoner of Trebekistan

I stumbled across Bob Harris' blog yesterday. He had a post about the Sopranos final episode that received 80,000 hits in 2 days, linked by the I think his name is Scott who runs it. But it turns out that Bob Harris was on Jeopardy and went a bit crazy while studying for the show. It also has a few tips on predicting categories and where the Daily Double is, and since I would love to go on Jeopardy and put some of this useless knowledge to work for me. I'll let you know how it turns out, and what sort of secret insider info it contains.

I googled myself just now (ewwwwwww) and found that I have not shared this story. The setting is junior year of undergrad, coming home from China-Mart or something else driving my 1993 Saturn SL2, 5 speed of course. Her name was Clio after the Renault car of the same name, but the Frenchies Clio is much much faster than mine was.

I'm driving along, take a left onto campus, roll up to the stop sign, don't really feel like completely stopping since it's late and there isn't much traffic (I know officer, that isn't an excuse), and roll through the stop sign. I look to my right and see a "Pinky" as my dad calls them because when he went there the writing on the car was in pink or something, but it's a campus cop in his early 90's Jeep Cherokee and since it isn't a real cop car it has the yellow roof lights.

Crap I think to myself, but he hasn't flipped on his lights yet. Maybe I'm good? I come to a complete stop at the next intersection and turn left. And I drop the hammer. His lights aren't on so maybe I can get away from him, I think to myself. I get about 150 yards from his Jeep and then he flips on the lights. I take a quick right (and in 20/20 retrospect I should've pulled into a parking space after the right and duck down, that was my only real hope of pulling this off) and punch it again. He's still back there but I'm gaining some ground. Another right and back down the hill. Blow through a stop sign (but look around to make sure there weren't any other cars or people, I'm not adding hit & run or manslaughter charges today) and make my way towards the main entrance. The thought that is stuck in my head is "If I can just get off campus, then I'm home free". Flying over speed bumps, the Jeep pulls up along side me (in the oncoming traffic lane) and then I take a quick right towards the main entrance, slow down for the turn, look for oncoming traffic and then pull onto Lakeshore (main road by campus) and he keeps following me. Fuck. My stupid theory didn't pan out. So I slow down and turn back onto campus. I pull into a parking spot and hop out of the car with license, registration and student ID in hand. He gives me this look like "what the hell were you doing?" and I just keep quiet and keep my trademark smirk on my face.

At this point I have no idea what's going to happen to me. I'm actually hoping he'll hit me so I can get out of this or at least get him in trouble too. But he keeps his cool and waits for back-up, which turns out to be the only real cop on the "force". He gets there and he said he was about to call in the real police for back-up. Phew, at least I kept it on campus. He asks why I run (ran the stop sign and obviously wasn't actually thinking), if I had any drugs or alcohol in the car (it's a dry campus). Nope but he can check if he wants. He doesn't and they write me a ticket for running the stop sign and then another one for running from them. Oh, the first guy also said he didn't think Saturns could go that fast. Honestly that almost made it all worth it. And for anyone wondering, this was before I cared about cars and before I autocrossed, so maybe that is a health outlet for driving aggression?

So what ultimately happened to me? Not too much. Went before the "values violation" board, explained the situation, and they hit me with probation for a semester and I could only park on campus right near the guard shack near entrance to campus. A good hike back to my dorm on the other side of campus. But I felt I could get away with parking on campus a few times. I couldn't and 2 car boots later, I can't park on campus anymore and probation is extended to a year. No biggie, I'm moving off campus that summer and I know of a couple back entrances to where I need to go on campus than most on campus parking.

I learned my "don't run from the cops" lesson and my criminal record is still spotless. I love college.

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