So I had to be in court today (at 4:30 pm!) to plead guilty to a driving without insurance ticket. That went fine. The problem was, I also had to miss part of work to get there in time. Which sucks, because it prevented me from finishing off the last little bit of work to make the final prototype of the project I'm working on, and be able to show people that the whole system works end to end. Which it does.
So, sit bored for hours in a stuffy court room with people who were (I'm not making this up) doing 25+ MPH over the limit, in a school zone, with no license. Great. And get a big fine for the crime of... um, who did I harm or endanger when I drove without insurance for a month? Oh right, nobody!
But no, the really great part was... while I was in court? They booted my car. I came back and there was a big neon orange sticker on the windshield saying, "You owe $XXX in unpaid parking fines". Now if I had known that I owed fines, I certainly would have paid them long before now. But, since the address on my driver's license is, you know, perfectly valid (and has been for the last two years) I guess them sending me a mail saying "You didn't pay your parking ticket" would just have been too easy. Also, according to the ticket, the boot was applied at 5:10pm. You get three guesses when the "pay us to get the boot off your car" office closes. Yeah... they really were not interested in even giving me a chance there.
Okay, so the de-booting office opens again at 8am tomorrow right? Well, except for that whole "either spend the night in your car in Denver, or blow $150 each way on a taxi to/from Boulder" thing, that would be okay. But no, you see, I have to be in Lyons at 7:20am tomorrow so I can meet up with my family, so we can drive all day to Iowa, so we can have thanksgiving with family there. Arrrrrgh! But even if we were setting off a little later it wouldn't matter. Even if I cut them a check at 8:01 am they have up to four hours to take the boot off. Meaning, the boot comes off at about 10:30-11, and I don't get back to Boulder until about noon.
Now, I can pay the fines by phone or over the webbertrons, but what good exactly does that do me if I'm in Iowa? My car was at a meter. So I pay, they take the boot off, the meter is already expired. Two minutes later the meter maid walks by... ticket on my window. Another two hours later, another ticket. Another two hours after that, boot goes right back on. Then 72 hours after that, the day I'm driving back from Iowa, my car gets impounded. Another $100 on top of everything else. And remember, this is the scenario that happens IF I ACTUALLY PAY THE FINES!
I seriously thought about having my car towed back to Boulder, or jacking it up and taking the wheel with the boot off and putting my spare on, or just getting a cylindrical lock pick and picking the stupid lock on the boot, and dumping the damn thing on the street. But all of those options are very illegal. Nice how the system reinforces itself that way - "we're not going to let you pay your fines, AND we're going to punish you even more if you dare try and take some constructive action!" Hold still. Now, bend over. No we're not going to use lube!
So now someone who I've already imposed upon far too much lately is going to have to get up at the fucking crack of dawn so he can drive me to Lyons, and then he's volunteered to come pick the car up tomorrow evening and drive it... somewhere. While his car sits there... and then he has to figure out a way to get back to his car... somehow. Frankly, I told him we should just let the fucker get impounded, which is only $100 on top of everything else, and then I could just get dropped off at the impound lot Monday morning.
What a complete fucking pain in the ass. I swear to god, this is all arranged intentionally so that no single person could ever possible do this stuff by themselves, so they're forced to annoy and inconvenience other people! Well I guess that's just what I get for trying to, you know, be a good citizen, go to court, pay my dues to society. No good deed goes unpunished. The only way this whole mess could have been worse would have been if it started snowing at 5:30pm this afternoon. I'm at least thankful the weather was nice!
Will someone please tell me what it was I did to deserve all this? Seriously, the negative karma balance necessary for this kind of chain of events is mind-boggling. Have I been stabbing retarded nuns to death, cooking and eating the hearts of small children, and sexually molesting puppies while I wasn't looking? What, exactly, the fuck??