Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Officer Friendly on McCormick Boulevard

I wasn't paying attention Friday morning, March 13, on my way back from the vasekin (sunrise) minyan at Yeshivas Brisk. Driving north on McCormick Boulevard between Devon Avenue and Pratt Boulevard, I was looking for something in my bag in the passenger seat with my right hand while driving with my left. I saw the Lincolnwood Police squad car lying in wait on the grass, but it was much too late. Officer Gordon pulled me over and said he clocked me at 53 (in a 40). He was nice about me not being able to provide proof of insurance--I had not transferred it back to my vehicle after renting a van for Purim earlier in the week. But he still gave me a ticket. I prayed that he wouldn't show up for court April 13 (the day after Easter), and that's exactly what happened. I thought I had a decent case since I was at the back of a convoy of vehicles. Who's to say which car was going 53mph? Maybe it was the lead car!

I saw Officer Gordon again yesterday morning. He had already claimed a victim at 7:18. I drove south to the post office, and on the return trip, I had to pass right by. I made sure I stayed under 40. He parked behind a grassy knoll so drivers approaching him from the south only see his police car top before it's too late. He's like a feline predator stalking his prey. As I passed by (38mph), I waved.

I almost feel sorry for Officer Gordon. He spends months in police training. Then he spends an hour a day pulling over drivers in a hurry to get to work? (What's worse is that McCormick has no pedestrians and no intersections less than a half-mile apart, except for where Officer Gordon lies in wait. The speed limit really should be 50.) Every time he talks to a driver, he is about to ruin the driver's day, unless he issues a warning. I don't know if he ever does that; I suspect drivers with Chicago addresses never receive warnings from suburban police officers. As I mentioned in a previous post, the ticket is $75, but fighting it in court and losing costs an additional $135.

Don't risk having a conversation with Officer Gordon! It's far better to watch your speed on McCormick and wave at 38mph. Let the other drivers see him in their rear-view mirrors.

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