Recently I had the opportunity to accompany a friend to a warm and fuzzy little place called the Santa Ana Courthouse.  She needed to straighten out a traffic violation and always hungry for blog material being the good friend that I am, I offered to come along for moral support.

Upon entering the facilities, which are, um, spacious and decorated in what I would refer to as DMV Chic, I began removing any metal I was wearing and noticed a bunch of folks taking off their belts.  Wanting to warm up the crowd a bit, I jumped in with “I hope everyone wore pants that fit today!” and waited for the round of chuckles my cheesy jokes usually garner.


The officers were not amused and, judging by the signs they flashed, neither were our local gangbangers (who, by the way, did not wear pants that fit, thankyouverymuch).

Just as I was about to retrieve my duffle bag purse from the conveyor belt, one of the policemen guarding the x-ray machine stopped me and pulled me aside. 

“Ma’am?  What is your business today at the court?”

“I’m here to support this woman, who was pulled over by one of your fine-weathered friends for driving like a jackass.”

My girlfriend shot me a dirty look; I shot one back at her that said “he’s got a gun and a very official looking moustache, so shut it.”

“Ma’am, I cannot allow you to proceed past this point until you give me permission to throw this away.”

And that’s when he pulled out, and held up for all of the criminals of Orange County to see, a four-pronged, silver-handled, dinner fork.

Yep.  I had a dinner fork in my purse.

Someone snickered.

I felt equal parts mortified and…….nope……mortified just about sums it up.

I told him he could toss it and tried not to let him see the pained expression on my face.  It was a good fork.

Once we got passed the check-in, we headed towards the courtroom designated on my friend’s paperwork and it was harder than you might think to distinguish the lawyers from the defendants; you can take the crackhead out of wherever a crackhead would hang out and put him in a cheap, oversized suit with a matching polyester tie and pleather shoes, and he’ll look just like the lawyers.  Luckily the handcuffs help; also, lawyers tend to have less facial piercings and usually don’t sport forehead tattoos, but really, that’s where the differences end.

Mostly though, I was surprised to find that the court has such a family-friendly atmosphere!  There were children everywhere: climbing the benches, eating Cheetos off the floor, coughing NOT into the inside of their elbows.  I was especially moved by a family who stood behind us in line; the father was dressed to the nines in a t-shirt that must have been a gift when he renewed his Hustler subscription, the silhouette of a woman in a compromising position splayed across his back.  His wife/girlfriend/baby mama/call-girl was equally classy in her cleavage baring top and low rise jeans, her penciled in eyebrows positioned in an arch that clearly said “Gurl, you best not be staring at my penciled in eyebrows,” her ruby red platforms the perfect contrast for her black ankle monitor.  Their daughter was adorable and the way she pronouced the word $@#% with a little lisp just melted my heart.

Suffice it to say, I was a tad disappointed when it was my girlfriend’s turn to go before the judge and she got her ticket thrown out without my help; I didn’t even get to shout “You can’t handle the truth!”

With any luck, someone close to me will break the law soon because I can’t wait to go back.

Someone over there owes me a fork.

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9 Replies to “Not Guilty”

  1. It is not that I just like your writing. it is that I ADORE your writing. Your essays make me wish I was with you. And then I imagine how we could make our selves laugh so hard we would pee our pants all while trying NOT TO LAUGH. And just thinking of that- and then reading the essay again. Makes me keel over in laughter.

    It is like a never-ending circle of goodness.

    I heart you.

  2. Ohhhhh Jo… I would have thrown the fork outside the bushes or something and gone back after to get it.. damn.

    forks aren't cheap.

  3. That is a great way to spend some time! I am however, very sad for the loss of your fork.

    I'm sure it belonged at home in your kitchen drawer with the rest of your forks.

    What if you have a big dinner party, and you realize after passing out the cake, that you are a fork short? I'd be highly disappointed.

  4. Honestly? I bought these plastic utensils at CVS that look *just like* real silverware. No one can tell the difference. And? If the cop had thrown my fork away I would have 1) not cared and 2) well he wouldn't have thrown it away, now would he, because it would be plastic.

    $1.99. CVS. Just sayin'.

  5. I read this sitting in the service center at the dealership and cackled out loud. You have an amazing gift for the funny with a big dollop of snark. I love it!
    And, you can be my wing-woman whenever I get ticketed or arrested.I promise.

  6. The official looking mustache. I'll never forget that, ever.

    So sorry for the loss of your fork. Such a tragedy.

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