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6/15/2005  

Buckle Up or You'll Go To Court in Los Angeles

Disclaimer: You are about to read Bitter Beep.

Apparently the lovely city of Los Angeles doesn't make enough money off the $65 street sweeping tickets, the $35 parking tickets (many for mistakenly assuming that an available space on Santa Monica Blvd. fully accessible to shops and restaurants, and seemingly no different than any other space on the street is available for you to park your registered vehicle for the standard two hours, when in fack, its only an absurd 20 minutes), or the $45 parking tickets for failing to read all 27 signs while parking on a side street to visit a friend, or the speed traps on Hollywood Way, which is convienently the quickest way to Burbank airport. Apparently they don't make enough money charging .25 for every 7 1/2 minutes in downtown meters, or, again, making all meters 20 minutes, so you constantly have to run back to fill it up.

Apparently, Los Angeles needs more money to NOT fill the pot holes & NOT re-pave side streets, NOT patrol neighborhoods, and NOT cut down trees so we can see the damn signs. No, they've found a new source of revenue, and that my friends is your seat belt.
Now let me say this right now: of COURSE we should all wear our seat belts - it's the smart thing to do - but I fail to see how we need to be patroled while driving and monetarily penalized accordingly.
I had a sense it was coming down the lane when I started seeing LAPD propoganda commercials threatening us that wearing our seat belt IS THE LAW.
Just today, after turning out onto Wilshire Blvd, and pausing at a cross-walk I heard from behind me "LAPD!" and thought I was on a COPS episode. Mr. Macho was actually in a really tight shirt and driving a 10-speed, and felt he could frighten the bejeezus out of me from behind. He demanded my driver's license - I had to ask him 2 TIMES why he needed it, and finally Mr. Personality barked "SEAT BELT". Do you know their 10-speed bicycles have flashy lights? Wow. Mr. Cool cop should be really proud of himself. He actually had on bike racer's sunglasses.
He made me pull up behind his partner's bike (yes, they work in pairs), and took 10 minutes to right me out a ticket. Ok, fine. I got pulled over by a whimpy, pathetic, totally loser bike cop. Fine. Fine, I got a stupid ticket for not wearing my seatbelt for all of the 2 minutes that I was in my car. How much could it be? 10 bucks? 15? No. I HAVE TO GO TO COURT! ITS A MISDEMEANOR! Lord knows how much I'll have to pay, and forget about the hours I have to waste going all the way downtown and sitting around to find out.
Now, no one loves this city more than Aunt Beep, but I've got to tell you - I've about had it. It would be one thing if I felt like the police were really a fully integrated unit, but where was Mr. Cool Bike Cop when a guy in a huge truck ran a stop sign and hit me head on while I was crossing the intersection?? I was hit so bad the ambulance came, but because I wasn't "mortally wounded or bleeding" the cops did not show up to the scene of the accident. WHERE WAS THAT GUY'S TICKET?? WHERE IS HIS DAY IN COURT?
If you're gonna ruin my day and get all KGB about me taking my own safety into my OWN hands, then LAPD, you better damn well show up when I need you. That's at car accidents, at muggings, and at hit and runs. I am sick and tired of paying through the nose to this city and getting nothing in return. Don't you think all that time and energy could be better spent finding the 4 murder suspects wanted in the Miracle Mile area?? Or showing up to accidents to see if the driver was drunk?

But to get to the point, my little Beepsters. WATCH OUT FOR BIKE COPS. ESPECIALLY ON WILSHIRE BLVD. AND FAIRFAX. Bike cops are pathetic and rude becuase they have the most worthless jobs on the force, so if you think they're gonna be nice to you, think again. Just put your damn seatbelt on and drive slowly. If there are more than 3 signs on any sign post DON'T PARK THERE, and always keep spare change in your car for the meter. Consider this your Beep Public Service Announcement.