A quick perusal of the viewer mailbag reveals the following missive:
“Johnny – What is the deal with teasing us about wrecked rental cars and arrest warrants
if you’re not gonna follow thru? What happened?”
Oooh, you are so right, anonymous reader. My big-ass bad. Let’s wrap these up cleanly, unlike that last episode of “Twin Peaks” where Annie was dragged into the Black Lodge by Windom Earle, Ben Horne was clocked on the head by Doc Heyward, Audrey was blown up real good in the bank safe and Agent Cooper got all possessed by Killer BOB, and then ABC CANCELLED THE FUCKING SHOW only to bring it back 10 years later as “Desperate Housewives,” complete with Secret Diary. I mean, that unresolved shit has stayed with me for years
, but you can hardly tell.
So, there I was in snowed-in Lorain, Ohio, visiting my older sistah Kim and los bambinos. We got buried in a major snowstorm the night before, so my brother-in-law was making decent coin with his truck and snowplow, plowing out driveways and parking lots. Well, he should have been making decent coin, but he’s a nice guy, so he was doing it for free. Every half hour or so, his phone would ring and off he went, digging some unfortunate senior citizen out of her drive, so she could grab her Golden Buckeye Card and work that 10% discount at Country Kitchen. That sort of thing.
After about an hour of playing video games with the kids and watching bro-in-law pull in and out of the winding driveway for plow duties, I heard a loud bang outside. Since I was in the middle of a kick-ass game of Mappy, I didn’t bother to look outside. Minutes later, bro-in-law was standing in the living room with a blank expression.
“Did you get insurance with that rental car?” he asked.
“No, I’m covered with my Allstate. Why?” I asked, just as the thought of why the fuck else would anyone ask you if you had insurance, douchebag
popped into my head.
Brother-in-law said nothing, but merely pointed out his living room picture window towards the driveway. There sat my rental car, the front end, bumper and hood smashed and crumpled into a pyramid, nearly blocking the windshield. Bro-in-law said he was backing out of the driveway and just plain forgot my car was parked there. It is still unclear whether he was backing out at 850 THOUSAND MILES AN HOUR or not. The drive back to the rental car place was a riot, trust.
So that wraps up the smashed rental car dangler.
I flew back home a week later. While going through the mail that had piled up, I came across an official looking letter from the Los Angeles Police Department. Oh, my.
Now keep in mind, it’s December 31, 2004 at 2p.m. The entire year of 2004 had been a constant shit storm for me, what with psychotic bosses
, street beatings
and hey, rental car smashings. Here I am one the last day of this horrific year, and the year continues to fuck with me until the last possible second. What else, am I going to discover an anal tumor at 11:58 p.m.? Bacdafucup, 2004.
The letter tells me I have an unpaid parking ticket from November 18, 2004, for “Failure to Obey” while driving my black PT Cruiser at 9:48 a.m. Since I have ignored and not paid this ticket, there will be bench warrant for my arrest issued if I do not call the LAPD Parking Enforcement Division by 5p.m., December 31, 2004.
I immediately call.
“You have reached the Los Angeles Police Department Parking Enforcement Division. We are closed for the New Year’s Eve Holiday.”
Jesus Horatio Christo.
Before we continue, some points:
• November 18 was a Thursday. I am seated in my office chair by 9:15 p.m. at the latest Monday thru Friday.
• What the fuck is “Failure to Obey?” That shit’s so vague they may as well have charged me with “Driving While Moving.”
• My car is red. Bright red. Not black.
And most important, • I NEVER GOT A GODDAMN TICKET FOR THIS.
And thus endeth 2004. The following Monday morning, I called the LAPDPED and explained the above. The nice person on the other end agreed with me that something was fishy and that I needed to draft a letter explaining all this and send it along. I also explained why I waited until after December 31 to call, since I was out of town and they were closed. Then I asked, “You guys are closed on New Year’s Eve every year, right?”
“And New Year’s Eve is on December 31st every year, right?”
“Do you think maybe it’s a good idea to change your pre-printed forms to read December 30th instead?”
I sent my letter that day. Today is January 24, 2005.
There still has been no response.