Storytime: Highway Patrol


Ok, so there I was on 696 East heading toward Royal Oak. A couple weeks ago I agreed to purchase a guitar from Drew Howard and I was on my way to pick it up. I’m minding my own business when I notice police lights in my rear view. I check my speedometer… 70-71, try to remember the speed limit (65? 70? What IS the speed limit???). They weren’t going away so I made my way slowly to the right shoulder and came to a complete stop. The lights were still there and the spots came on.

After getting out my proper documentation, I waited. And waited. And waited. All I saw was a police officer standing behind me. Within a couple minutes another squad car pulled up with lights flashing. Then another. Then another. Pretty soon there were at least five (that I could count) police cars behind me and a group of officers all over the place behind me. They had the right lane of the freeway completely blocked off and traffic was beginning to back up. It was right about here that I started getting a little nervous.

I began to go through my mental files to see if there was anything about an unpaid ticket, or anything like that. Nothing. Then I started to wonder if maybe my truck was a double for a bank robber (or worse!). This would at least explain why the guy waited for backup. Still… nothing. Just a bunch of cops in my rear view seemingly doing nothing. I was really nervous at this point (those of you who know me well know why).

So… After about 15-20 minutes with NO CONTACT of any kind, four or five of them begin to approach my vehicle. One to my drivers door, two directly behind and two to my passenger door. All with flashlights. The first guy arrives at my window and says something like “hi there sir, how are you”. REALLY??? That’s all you got after all this? I’m expecting to get pulled from the vehicle, cuffed and taken to the clink (those of you who know me will know why)!

Finally, after pulling myself together, I responded something like “well, I gotta tell you officer, I’m a bit nervous here! I’m sitting here with five or more police cars behind me and a bunch of cops stalking my vehicle!”

He goes, and I jest not here, “why did you pull over?”

After processing that statement, I managed to get out “What?”

“Why did you pull over?”, he continued.

“Because you were behind me with your lights on and you followed me to the shoulder!” I gasped!

“I wasn’t pulling YOU over, sir. I was pulling HIM over!”, continued Michigan’s finest. I looked around to see another car behind me (which looked a lot like a cop car and was previously obscured by all the lights blaring in my direction). Right about now was when I saw that the cop was sort of smiling.

“Oh”, I said, adding “you guys scared the CRAP out of me!”

“Well, that’s a good thing I guess”, he ended. “Thanks for getting out your license and registration, but you’re free to go. Have a good night”.

Only me.

Now, a quick postscript to the whole story. I get to my destination, where Drew and his group are playing and one of the first tunes I hear them do is “Highway Patrol”.

I jest not.