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A political prisoner of Operation Don’t Do Your Dash

Posted by: Justin Smith | 6 December, 2012 - 10:00 AM
Traffic Light.

I’ve done a lot bad things.

I’ve said silly things to serious people. I swear a bit, and I bet on the Melbourne Cup but never win.

Like a country boy, I sometimes forget to wear my seat belt when I drive off. The kids remind me and save me from doom. I’m an example, but a bad one.

I’ve lost my temper with people, and I’ve kicked objects that will never feel pain.

I’ve tested the patience of red lights – and was flashed. I’ve driven too fast in slow places – and was flashed.

I lack perfection. I’m still being worked on by the great forces that shape the rocks, push the winds, and make the Myki cards beep.

I am… unfinished.

And this week, I got myself into some trouble again. I was the target of a police blitz.

While walking across Spencer Street – heading back to 3AW’s Media House after lunch – the little man in lights was glowing red. He didn’t want me to walk. But I did anyway.

I was on the phone and in a hurry. I was distracted by my own importance. I wrote my own traffic rules as I strutted across the road.

Halfway across, I saw a copper on the other side. He was far from undercover and he gave me a nice, long look.

I got that thump in the heart you can only get from being looked at by a policeman when you know you’ve done the wrong thing.

I got to the other side. He moved towards me.

In the movies, as the hero of the people, I would have made a run for it. There would have been a thrilling but hilarious chase up into the Southern Cross Station – through the crowds, the carriages and the coffee.

But I didn’t run. I surrendered.

With a sharp uniform, sunglasses and a gun – he seemed bigger than he was.  Me – with my guilt, mumbling and fumbles to get my license out of my wallet – seemed smaller than I was.

He told me there would normally be a warning, but there was a blitz on and there’d be a $70 fine coming in the mail.

The senior constable never smiled. My attempts at wit and irony crashed into his flak jacket and landed on the ground.  He asked me if I had a reason for crossing on the red light – I think I said “yes, but you would have heard them all before.”

Now I find out I was a political prisoner of Operation Don’t Do Your Dash – a two day, zero tolerance crackdown on walkers who don’t know the difference between red, green and flashing.

I did my dash.  I deserved it.  And now I go back to working on perfection. 

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Blog comments Your Say

  • "I've kicked objects that will never feel pain".One can almost take that quote to mean that next time he sinks the slipper he'll make sure pain is felt.

    jgl Melb Thursday 6 December, 2012 - 11:09 AM
  • Sorry to hear but you learned a valuable lesson. And I bet you ended up lossing more time then you would have saved crossing on the red!

    Phillip Molly Malone Thursday 6 December, 2012 - 10:06 AM

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