I should have known that getting out of Dodge wasn’t going to be easy, that it wasn’t going to be perhaps without some drama, some karma or some fanfare. I was leaving the Golden State, dagganbit, the home of Marilyn Monroe, James Dean and Pixar Animation.
A couple of things led to a dicey exit: It is a long state, the home to James Dean, Marilyn Monroe and Pixar Animation, I am always late and I wanted to cross state lines and get out of town.
But Buffo Officer Friendly and that ever-present radar did not see it that way. He said that I was speeding. I was, but such is the risks you take when hightailing it out of Dodge and into Arizona, home to the late Barry Goldwater/ Goldwasser, the Grand Canyon and a stupid hotel with a stupid plastic pony in front that we were heading to.
He wrote the ticket, I asked him where I was, he displayed a buff and beautiful bicep at the passenger window with the California Highway Patrol patch, and I knew we hadn't exited Dodge.
Maybe my account is cursed, maybe I am cursed, maybe the whole planet is cursed, I do not know, but shortly after crossing state lines several days later with Mookie Moo and Bitsy Boo in the back seat in their adorable dog jackets with the dog bone drawings on it ($19.00, medium size each @ Petco), I found a woman’s eyebrow salon went in, plunked myself down in the chair, winced, then pulled out my trusty and ever-present plastic and paid.
Days later, the doggone ticket arrived, too and it did not come cheap, regardless of what the officer with the white teeth and biceps had said. It was the price of a muffler and a snow chain or two or a couple of days at the spa. I steadied myself as my wrote the account number on the form and dropped it in the mail.
Days later, the call came.
“Did you,” the credit lady said, “charge a dollar to Netflix?”
“Not that I can remember,” I said.
“Then your card number was compromised, and we will close down your account.”
“Good idea,” I said, surmising that it was those ladies at that salon place that caused me all that wincing with their scissors and string.
A few days later, the letter arrived from Officer Friendly's employer. "Credit card declined," it said. "Send money order within two weeks or there could be a warrant for your arrest.”
So I scurried down to the bank and ordered a money order and started tracing it within a week. Several days later and still no receipt and and Dodge's phone wires were busy and down probably with people just like me at the other end of the line.
They finally did receive it and the next step is an online traffic school where I can redeem my worth as a citizen of the road and be privy to some lower insurance rates.
Getting out of Dodge is going to be like castor oil in the stomach and chewing tobacco on the shoe.
Amen and over and out.