Archive for the ‘Bitchy-Poo’ Category

how i was almost arrested for honking my horn

Monday, February 18th, 2008

On Saturday I was invited to attend an Izea focus group in Orlando. I have two choices in driving there – the interstate, which takes me out of my way, or the back roads, past farms and forests, and through small towns that are barely a blip on my radar. That is, until Saturday, when I was (wrongfully) accused of road rage by a small town cop, threatened with cuffs and the back of his squad car, and a trip to the station!

As I leave my house, there’s one long stretch of road is only a single lane in each direction, with curves making it practically impossible to pass any slow poke holding things up. For 20 minutes or so, I drove behind 4 or 5 other cars that were all being delayed by a red Geo metro going 10 miles under the speed limit. As we entered the small town of Mascotte, FL, the road opened up, and became 2 lanes in each direction separated by a low concrete median. The slow going Geo Metro went into the right hand lane, and wanting to avoid him, I stayed in the left. The speed limit was 45 and I was doing it, along with the cars around me. Finally happy to be moving at the speed limit, I cranked up my Sirius radio and sang along.

Suddenly, traffic came to a quick stop. A few car lengths ahead of me was a pickup truck, attempting to make a left turn into the lanes going the opposite direction. There wasn’t a turn lane – only a median, and this truck was position so that half of the body of the vehicle stuck out into the left lane (the one I was in) completely blocking the flow of traffic.

I did what most of us probably would have done – I beeped my horn. Actually, I beeped it more than once, as the driver of the truck seemed completely unaware of the hazard he was causing. Kind of a “hey, blocking the flow of traffic here buddy” thing. The truck finally turned and I started to move again with traffic, going maybe 150 yards before realizing there was a City of Mascotte police car behind me, lights flashing, siren off. I carefully merged over into the right lane, and then pulled into the empty parking lot of a real estate office.

Two cops exited the vehicle – a female, who never spoke to me or even came to my side of the vehicle, and her male counterpart. As soon as he opened his mouth, I knew we had trouble. He barked at me, “What is your PROBLEM?!?!” and I was almost so flabbergasted I didn’t know what to say. Problem? I didn’t have one! He’s got to be referring to the horn beeping, right? So I started to explain how I was trying to avoid the Geo Metro and stayed in the left and the truck was blocking everyone….

“YOU’VE GOT ROAD RAGE!!”

Huh? Wait a minute…I was calm, polite, and reserved. What’s this road rage he’s talking about? Good thing I was thinking this and not saying it, because he kept going…barking at me and berating me…

“That truck was making a LEGAL LEFT TURN and he is WITHIN HIS RIGHTS TO DO SO! What’s your PROBLEM that you needed to beep the horn like that at THAT TRUCK? You could have gone around him!”

Seriously? Did this cop not see the ass end of this truck blocking a whole lane of traffic? That seems to be reasonably unsafe. And me changing lanes suddenly to go around him? Yeah, like that wouldn’t have gotten me pulled over!

“ROAD RAGE IS A CRIMINAL OFFENSE! I could have you in the back of my car in cuffs right now, do you UNDERSTAND?”

Whoa, I understand that one of us has some rage, but it’s not me! Officer AngerIssues returns to his cruiser, presumably to look up some kind of offense he can ticket me on. His female counterpart writes up the ticket, and as I watch her through my rear view mirror, I can see her grinning! Lovely. There’s nothing like a smiling cop to make you think you’re helping to fulfill a ticket quota.

Male cop comes back up after 5 minutes to my window. Female cop goes to the passenger side of my vehicle…I guess to prevent my escape? Because you know, I’m a dangerous criminal. He again tells me how he COULD be arresting me, but he’s “only” going to ticket me for “improper use of horn”. He again mentions the road rage and then stops talking…I realize he’s waiting for me to reply in the affirmative, I guess to admit I was wrong? Not going to happen, so I simply say “O.K.” and sign my ticket.

Here’s the best part of the story though…

If you’ve ever received a ticket in the state of Florida, you know that you have the right to contest your ticket in court. How do you know this? Because the officer or sheriff or deputy who tickets you tells you, “You can contest this in court, if you wish to do so the court information is on the ticket…blah blah.”

Officer AngerIssues didn’t say anything remotely resembling the statement above. His words (and I’m paraphrasing here – the whole event was pretty traumatic for me) were:

If you consider fighting this ticket, I’ll be there with the three other cops who were out here this morning.

I took my ticket, put my window back up, and slowly drove away. I was seething inside. Pull me over for something bogus – fine. But how dare this cop try to intimidate me into not going to court to stand up for myself?

Obviously, I couldn’t stand up for myself or even speak up during the traffic stop, for fear that this cop would react badly, but little does he know…but attempting to intimidate me into not appearing in court…he made me want to go all the more. I plan to go and tell the judge exactly what he said – NO ONE should be intimidated like this!

I researched the Florida statutes this morning, and found out that the officer had NO basis at all for the road rage charge he claims he could have given me. The road rage statute is called “Aggressive careless driving” here in Florida:

316.1923 Aggressive careless driving.–”Aggressive careless driving” means committing two or more of the following acts simultaneously or in succession:

(1) Exceeding the posted speed as defined in s. 322.27(3)(d)5.b.

(2) Unsafely or improperly changing lanes as defined in s. 316.085.

(3) Following another vehicle too closely as defined in s. 316.0895(1).

(4) Failing to yield the right-of-way as defined in s. 316.079, s. 316.0815, or s. 316.123.

(5) Improperly passing as defined in s. 316.083, s. 316.084, or s. 316.085.

(6) Violating traffic control and signal devices as defined in ss. 316.074 and 316.075.

I didn’t do ANY of those things, and certainly not two at a time. Why did this cop think he could threaten to arrest me and charge me with criminal charges when I absolutely did not deserve those charges? It’s just a scare tactic! It’s so I would happily accept my $76.50 ticket and thank my lucky stars that the “nice cop” didn’t arrest me. Get this though – on my ticket, he checked the box for “aggressive driving”, even though I didn’t commit that crime. How can you be driving aggressively when you’re sitting still?

And let’s talk about that $76.50 ticket for “improper horn use”:

316.271 Horns and warning devices.–

(3) The driver of a motor vehicle shall, when reasonably necessary to ensure safe operation, give audible warning with his or her horn, but shall not otherwise use such horn when upon a highway.

(8) A violation of this section is a noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a nonmoving violation as provided in chapter 318.

Gee, I blew my horn to ensure SAFE operation. It was a warning to the guy blocking traffic…sounds like attempting to be safe to me! Yeah, I probably blew it one too many times, but there’s nothing in the statute saying how many horn blows is too many.

What was this cop’s problem? Did his wife just leave him? Child support increased? Having a bad day in general? Whatever the issue, it seems like he took it out on me…did I look easy to pick on? Sure, a skinny white lady in a big SUV is an easy target…she’ll cry when you give her the ticket and you can let out all of your anger on her.

Did I blow the horn one too many times? Possibly, but did that “offense” warrant the treatment received? Absolutely not. I’ve been having all sorts of anxiety issues about this since Saturday, and I even had a nightmare about the cop. I’m fearful about going to court and having 3 offices of the law back each other up with the version of this story that isn’t the truth. If I need to pay for my ticket and court fees in the end, so be it, but I want it to be known to the court how this cop threatened and intimidated me. No one should be treated like I was treated, especially not for blowing the horn!

f*** the police

Saturday, February 16th, 2008

I almost got arrested this morning on my way to Orlando, which all in all, is a super sweet way to start off your weekend. You just need a dick cop with a chip on his shoulder, and you too can experience the fear that you’ll end up in the back of a squad car.

Story coming soon, when I have the energy to type it up.

poison pen update

Friday, February 15th, 2008

Remember my overnight shipping via UPS that wasn’t? I wrote a letter and mailed it off to a few company big wigs, letting them know I was unhappy. I just got an email notification that they refunded me $33.58! Whoohoo! That means in the end, I paid for 2 day shipping, instead of over night. Two day shipping is actually what I got with UPS’s delay. One point for me for writing a letter of complaint!

Now THEY can go after UPS for the screwup if they want to recover their money. It’s not my problem anymore.

old navy snail trail pants

Thursday, February 7th, 2008

Digg this post!

**This post has been updated as of 2/8/08 – read all the way to the bottom to see my fufill the request of a commenter from Fark.com!**

Let me preface this by saying if you are:

  • Easily offended
  • Easily grossed out
  • Have a rotten sense of humor

Stop reading NOW and go elsewhere.

The rest of you still with me? Good…you’re going to enjoy this story! It all started a month ago, before my trip to Amsterdam. I decided to head to the after Christmas sale at the Old Navy in my town and get new pants for the trip. I found two pairs (same style, different colors) on sale and after trying on one pair, bought them and took them home.

I am not a “wash clothes before I wear them” type of person. Well, I am now, but I didn’t used to be that way. In fact, I’ve made fun of my husband on more than one occasion because he would wash brand new clothes that had obviously never even been tried on! I saw it a waste of time, especially when you could see the crease marks in a brand new shirt, or the pants still had the tages and size sticker attached.

So I head home from Old Navy with my new pairs of pants – the green pair I tried on in the store, and the brown pair in the same size that I didn’t try on. A few days later, I put the pants on so that I could head out. I had the pants on all of 10 minutes before deciding I should hit the toilet before leaving the house…just like I tell my kids, you always potty before you go out. As I sit down on the can, pants down around my knees, I noticed something odd in the crotch area of the inside of the pants.

So….hypothetical question for my readers:

If you bought new pants from the Old Navy, and as you went to put them on, noticed a VAGINAL DISCHARGE in the crotch, that was crusty, and NOT BELONGING TO YOU, would you:

A. Return the pants to Old Navy for a new pair of pants, no questions asked?
B. Call the media, and get noticed, and get more from Old Navy for your trouble?
C: Call a lawyer, and bank big on your pain and suffering?

Yes folks, I’m not making this up – upon closer inspection, there was DRIED vaginal discharge in the crotch of these new pants, and it wasn’t MINE!

EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!

I can’t even describe HOW grossed out I was. Now, I’m a mom, and I’ve dealt with a lot of gross things over the years. I’ve wiped butts and caught vomit in my hands to prevent it from landing on the carpet. I’ve had a child who needed a catheter due to an injury, and I was in charge of emptying out the pee bag. On top of all that, I have a sick sense of humor. But to think that I had these nasty pants on for 10 minutes, with someone else’s…dried juices…near my underwear, and next to that, my nether regions? I was disgusted.

The tag had been missing from this pair of brown pants, so I deduced that someone (henceforth referred to as “juicy bitch”) bought the pants, wore them commando for several hours, and then returned them to Old Navy for a refund. Old Navy obviously didn’t take a close look at the pants, and put them back on the rack, where I picked them up.

About a week later, I finally had the time to go back to Old Navy to return the pants. Realizing that this was a sensitive issue, I asked for a manager at the checkout counter and attempted to be reasonably discreet when I spoke to her. It wasn’t pretty. The manager was SO defensive and although she did say “I’m sorry” once, her attitude was horrible! She made me feel like I was in the wrong for being disgusted about the pants. She wasn’t empathetic at all and it went badly, with excuse after excuse about WHY it could have happened, instead of saying, “I’m so sorry, how horrible, let me take care of this for you.” She actually said, “Well, it’s not as if we did this on PURPOSE!” Sheesh lady, I never said you did, I just want you to know so you can prevent this in the future!

Realizing I was getting nowhere fast, I quietly told her I would call corporate to express my dismay, and her response was “Go ahead!”. Nice! So I did, literally dialing their number on the way out of the store. The rep there WAS empathetic and understanding, and promised that she’d have the district manager call me. I told her I had planned to return two items and shop in ON tonight, but after dealing with the manager, I was so turned off I left. I felt mortified when she was talking to me, and I was so embarrassed that she reacted like I was somehow in the wrong for expecting to buy clean clothes! I don’t even want to go back to the store.

To make the rest of a long story short, I never heard from a district manager. I did hear back from the Old Navy rep at corporate who apologized again, and sent me a $50 gift card for my troubles, and told me I didn’t need to return the pants. (Um, yeah, cause I’m going to wash them and wear them after this?) The pants were close to $20, so the end result here is that Old Navy puts my value as a customer at $30. I think Old Navy blew it. I should have been contacted by the district manager in this area, and I should have been reassured that this will never happen again to anyone.

I’m now auctioning the snail trail pants off on eBay. If you’re in the market for a pair of light brown wide leg size 2 pants, complete with someone else’s vaginal discharge in the crotch, please check out my eBay auction! (Note: eBay auction now gone due to being reported by internet police….*snicker*. Apparently selling items with bodily fluids on them is against eBay policy, but not Old Navy policy! If you happened to screen shot the auction before it was removed, let me know! Maybe you’re a fetish freak who is into user underwear and the like – these pants are just as good! If you have no need for this item, please feel free to Stumble and Digg this post. Email it to your friends as a warning to ALWAYS check out the new clothes they buy, and ALWAYS wash the new clothes you buy. If you don’t, you may find someone else’s bodily fluids a bit too close for comfort!

(Don’t forget to Digg this post!)

Edited to add: Holy crap! As of 4:41 eastern time, Thursday 2/7/08, my eBay auction already has 477 views. It’s been up for 4 hours.

Hi to all of my visitors from The Consumerist! You’ve got questions, I’ve got answers:

1. She can’t just wash them now and then wear them? She now has to sell them on Ebay? Once they’re washed they should be fine – why not just keep them?

Ick. I’m not even touching them. I originally took the pictures to show my friends, so they could share in my mortification. The pants are in a bag, and I don’t think I would ever be comfortable wearing them, no matter how much hot water and bleach I used.

2. It’s not clear (1) why she’d take there “eww” pants back after trying to return them to the store and (2) why she’d photograph and list them on Ebay for a profit. does she really thing someone wants them? And a BIN for $50, come on!

I didn’t get satisfaction with the store manager, so I kept the pants when I called corporate. I thought eventually I’d be returning them and speaking to the district manager. I’m not really selling them for a profit – note the 99 cents. This is about drawing attention to what happened.

3. Had those pants been returned by someone else that way and been put back on the rack? Or were they tried on briefly by a woman who just enjoyed the Old Navy experience a little too much?

I think someone bought them, wore them, and returned them.

4. 50 bucks buyout….That’s soooo Quagmire.

I had to pick a number. Giggity, giggity, giggity, giggity!

5. I’m confused…so Old Navy wouldn’t let her return the jeans? Why did she leave the store with them? Why is she selling them on Ebay? Was she trying to extort additional money from the store manager and that’s why she’s saying that her business is only worth $30 to Old Navy? There’s no way in hell I’d leave the store with those nasty things still in my hand so I’m thinking that she didn’t want to just return them, she wanted money and not “gift card” money. …I’m such a pessimist…

I never got to the point of return with the first manager. Corporate told me to keep them, burn them, throw them away – they didn’t care. Given my experience, I didn’t think the gift card was a fair trade.

6. I just reported the auction to eBay. We’ll see how long it takes them to pull the listing.

Party pooper.

7. Wouldn’t this have been noticed before purchase when the shopper tried on the clothes?

I bought two pairs, same size, same style. I tried on one, but not the other.

Updated again 2/8/08 – this link has hit Fark and it’s been stated that the story is useless without a picture. You asked for it!

instant gratification

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

I’m an instant gratification kind of girl. I want results, and now please, ok? When I submitted my chapter 1 homework for my statistics class online last night, I was excited to see it graded within two hours. (I was even more excited to see the comments from the instructor on the assignment saying “Outsanding! Perfect score!” Kudos to my husband, the tutor.) I’ve got chapter 2 due on Friday, and we’re stuck on the last question, so I posted a question to the profession on the online discussion board for the class last night. She still hasn’t answered it, and none of the other 25 students have chimed in either. The assignment is due tomorrow night, and I’d rather not be working on homework at that point, considering I’m done except for this single question.

(I have to create my own data sets – 2 of them in fact – and then put one on a regular frequency table and the other on a grouped frequency table. The twist is that she stated to use a max of 10 scores, and grouped frequency is best used, per the book, on 15 or more scores. I don’t get it. Anyway…)

And my other class…there’s no gratification there, instant or otherwise. I submitted a paper online Sunday (the due date) and haven’t heard a thing back yet. I’d like to know if I’m on the right track BEFORE I start my outline for my research paper.

I’m also bent because the statistics teacher has got chapter 3 work due on Monday, but the forms and questions to submit said work won’t be available until tonight. I guess that’s her way of saying enjoy a few hours of statistics this weekend? I could be done with it if I had the questions to turn in!

poison pen letter

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

Ah….there’s nothing like starting your day by talking to three clueless customer service reps, and then writing a poison pen letter to the company they work for.

I purchased a textbook online this week for Jim, and paid for next day air, which cost me an extra $56. (Ouch!) The book should have arrived last night, and it’s still not here. I called UPS and was told some adverse weather in Missouri held things up, and that I should contact the seller for a credit. Okey-dokey!

I called the online bookstore this morning and explained things to them, and how even as of last night, the UPS tracking indicated the package was on time and would be delivered on 1/30. The first customer service rep informed me that since the delay was due to weather, my shipping fees would not be refunded or credited. Hmm. That hardly sounds fair, since the returns and refunds information in my confirmation emails doesn’t mention weather delays, and it wasn’t brought up when I selected next day air either. I asked to speak to her supervisor and got transfered to the team leader, a.k.a customer service representative #2.

She stated that the weather refund information was located in the F.A.Q. on their website, cause of course, EVERYONE reads that before ordering things online, right? She told me I should have read it before calling in…oh, I’m sorry, am I BOTHERING YOU? Keeping you from a morning smoke break? Oh, and “shopping elsewhere from now on is your prerogative”. Huh? Did she just tell me it was ok to take my business somewhere else? Isn’t she supposed to try and KEEP business for her company?

She transfered me to customer service representative #3, who was a supervisor. Finally, I was cooking with gas! Eh…not so much, since this one was only willing to give me a $10 credit on the shipping. Actually, her first option was to give me a $10 credit on a FUTURE order, and I pointed out I don’t need more books now. She reluctantly said she’d credit me $10. Wow, a whole $10?

Let’s recap, shall we?

I spent $300 on books in this store in a single week, over the course of 2 orders, paying for next day shipping twice. I’ve spent over $100 on shipping alone, and they offered me $10 to make up for the delay. I get that it’s not THEIR fault – weather happens. But policies need to be clear and upfront so you know they’re not going to refund you in advance. And the willingness to let me shop elsewhere? With customer service reps like these, it’s no wonder half.com is doing a booming business!

I’m currently writing a letter which will be sent to the company big-wigs. Even if I don’t get a credit, they can definitely identify some training needs from my experience.

a rant about voting

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

I live in an area of retirees and families – there’s a ton of new construction and families in the area, complete with stay at home moms and dads who are free during the day when the kids are in school. So why, when I just hit my local voting precinct at 3pm, was I the only person under the age of 60? Not only that, but the line was OUT the door. This is why people don’t vote, and why retirees are the ones determining who our next President will be. They actually CARE about voting, unlike most of my generation, judging from the lack of young people at the polls.

When I finally got inside, I noticed things had changed from the last time we voted. Previously, you went to separate lines according to where you fell in the alphabet, and signed into a book once you presented your photo idea. Now everyone goes into the same line, where your drivers license is scanned into a special computer, and you sign electronically to get a receipt, which gives you the correct ballot.

My polling place had TWO of these computers, both being operated by two little old grannies, both sets moving like a herd of turtles. In fact, no one working at the polls had any sense of urgency at all. Here’s my suggestion to the polling authority for the county – more computers, and people who can put a little hustle into it. It took me less time to vote (selecting a candidate for President and voting on an amendment to increase the homestead exemption here in Florida) than the time I spent in line OR at the computer getting scanned and signed in. While most of the people in line didn’t mind the wait, treating it like old home week and a chance to catch up with your friends you haven’t seen since the last V.F.W. dance, I minded. The freedom to vote should come with a guarantee that you don’t need to wait more than 10 minutes in line to do so.

I think my sister has the right idea, voting by absentee ballot. (Hmm, is that what people my age are doing, in order to avoid the nonsense at the polls?)

to catch a predator

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

Angie shared yet ANOTHER story of sexual misconduct by a teacher, and this one is again in my home state of Florida. Isaac Tillis, a 29 year old math teacher at Bartow High told a 16 year old female student she could get an A if she gave him a blow job. She declined (smart girl!) but told police about the exchange. They set up a sting, and the student met with the teacher to accept his proposal. The student was wired, and Tillis took her into the restroom in the teacher’s lounge, pulled down his pants, and told her to perform oral sex, at which point the police came in.

I’m pleased that he was caught, literally, with his pants down. However, I am absolutely flabbergasted that a minor child would be put in this position. Would you be happy if your child, even at the age of 16, was allowed to go into a private room with a man twice her age, and stayed there while he pulled his pants down? I can’t fathom why the police thought that was acceptable, and why the student’s parents allowed it is beyond me. After your child as been propositioned by an adult, why would you allow her to be further drawn into that situation? To see her teacher name? To be TOLD to give him a blow job, while his pants are down?

I’m sickened that people put a child into this situation in order to catch this man. A child, even one who is two years away from being an adult, shouldn’t be used as bait.

bitter old hag says, let them eat fruit!

Friday, December 21st, 2007

My friend Tim shared a hilarious bit of news from my neck of the woods this week. Yes, only in Florida will an old biddy call the police because her neighbor “stole” from her. RuthSnowThe big heist? A single tangerine from the lady’s fruit tree. Ruth Snow (ain’t she a looker?) was working on a jigsaw puzzle when she saw her neighbor, Italo Tomaselli, walk to her tangerine tree and pluck off a piece of fruit. Apparently, Italo (who is 80 years old) has been helping himself to Ruth’s sweet, sweet fruit (ha!) for years, and Ruth (who is 81) had enough. In fact, she was so bitter, that she cut DOWN several of her own trees to prevent her neighbor from stealing any of her fruit. (Surely she’s heard of the phrase, cutting off your nose to spite your face?)

Tomaselli admits he was in the wrong. Ruth, proving she’s a hag right to the end, said she wants to see his butt in a sling. Very neighborly! I see a lot of fruit theft in her future, considering her name and address, as well as her spiteful actions, have been broadcast all over the news. She just made herself a HUGE target….karma, baby!

In her spare time, Ruth enjoys driving slow in the fast lane, and confiscating baseballs and footballs that land in her yard.

red tape in motion at the school

Friday, December 21st, 2007

Why does it take so long to get things done with the school system?

Remember the letter saying Matthew qualified for gifted? It was dated November 17th. I called the school psychologist this week asking why we hadn’t heard anything, knowing that a meeting should have been scheduled to discuss his results. She informed me that I needed to contact the staffing specialist at his school, who is conveniently only there two days a week.

I left the staffing specialist a message on Monday, and waited, knowing she’d be in the office today. Since she didn’t call me back yet, I called her, and she informed me that his meeting isn’t scheduled yet. I pressed her to schedule it, and explained I’d be gone for a week in January and didn’t want to miss it. (The school typically schedules these things and sends you a letter telling you when to show up.)

She told me the first thing she had available wasn’t until FEBRUARY! What the heck? The testing was done in October, the results sent in November, and you aren’t even going to discuss the plans with me for my kid for another 2 months? Unacceptable. I nicely explained the time line of events to her, and told her that I knew after the meeting it would still take another few weeks before Mathew ever saw the inside of a gifted classroom…would he even get in this year?

It’s absolutely ridiculous that the wheels turn so slowly. Gifted children, learning disabled, those needing speech or other services from the school – it shouldn’t take this long! The only one who suffers is the child who is missing out on things THEY need to be a better student, to grow, and to learn. After expressing my dismay at the time this process is taking, she squeezed us in for two weeks from now. It makes me wonder how often people get pushed to a later date just because the school CAN do it.