This is the Cop Story #2 “NICE TRY, DUDE!!”
Polonnaruwa , Batticaloa Road. It was 5.00 P.M. The Honda Civic Hybrid in front of us grabbed our attention a because of its foreign plates. Just because the Honda was almost crawling and the solid white line, which prevented us overtaking without crossing it, was there all the way since we left then city limits, I was very positive we were way under the legal speed limit. And, I was extra cautious because of the unusual number of uniforms all over the city that particular day.
Just as we were passing a beautiful paddy field full of herons out on the open highway, some cop uniforms loomed ahead. As it always happens, a cop whistle shrieked and we were flagged down. I mean not the Honda Civic Hybrid with foreign plates, just innocent me. I stopped following the proper parking procedure and grabbed the documents from under the sun visor, when the rookie cop oozing youth approached the door with that Sherlock Holms smirk. This is his first sentence. He asked this in the tone a teacher would use on one of his most notorious students.
“How many offences did you commit, sir?”
“I didn’t commit any!” I answered still seated. I was quite positive about this.
The rookie’s eyes nearly popped out of his head. Then he shook his head slowly with that leering I-know-it-all grin.
“You say you didn’t commit any offense?”
“Officer, I didn’t commit any traffic offense now!” I said.
Then I checked that no vehicles were behind us before opening the door and then stepped out and stood in front of the vehicle for further conversation.
“You are still telling me sir, you didn’t violate any law, huh? Let me see your documents.”
I selected the documents relevant to the van out of my pouch and handed over. He frowned at the ones I didn’t give him which were the documents of my bike and asked,
“What are those?”
“Well they are the documents of my bike. And that bike is also mine. They aren’t relevant to this. I take both the sets no matter which vehicle I ride. That’s to be on the safe side.”
“Okay, then, sir you won’t own up the offense you committed.”
He was testing my patience, which had begun to wear thin by this time.
“Look here officer, I may have violated some of the commandments in my life. But I’m sure you aren’t interested in those. You want to know about the traffic offenses. Well, I’m telling you haven’t done any. For example. I followed that Honda Hybrid with foreign plates since I left the city. It was crawling but I didn’t overtake.”
“Uh-huh! Which means you felt like overtaking.”
“Definitely! I want to reach Batticaloa before nightfall. Already it’s five o’clock. Still I didn’t overtake even though I wanted to.”
“Which means sir, you were tempted to overtake crossing the solid white line.”
“That’s what I said officer, I felt like overtaking but I didn’t.”
“But felt like means you could have overtaken.”
“Here, listen officer, can you sue me or fine me for my thoughts, if I didn’t do that?"
The boy cop admired my face with a sly grin for a long time. Then he handed my documents back to me.
“I just tried.” He said, “You can go, sir”
I slammed the door shut with all the fury. My cousin who was traveling with our family who happened to be married to an Inspector of Police, had been listening to the whole conversation.
“Bro, He had no way out because you didn’t budge. He would have booked you if you stuttered and admitted to his charges. Just see his nerve to say “I just tried!!”
“Sis, that’s the problem with us non-police-dudes. When you and your husband are flagged down all he has to do is to flash his ID, and you are cleared with a salute, and sometimes and apology no matter what offence is committed.” I said.”You tell him when you get home what happened today.”
“Not just tell him, you write it to the media.” She said gritting her teeth.
“No. I have a better idea. I’ll blog this.” I said.