Wednesday, November 9, 2022

At the Mercy of the Court


I was trying get out of paying a parking ticket. So I went to the city facility where hearings about parking tickets are held.

First I had to pass through a metal detector. Except wheelchairs are too wide to fit through those things and even if they could all the metal makes the alarms go berserk. So the security guy waved me around to his side and passed over me with his wand, like he was setting some sort of spell on me or trying to rid me of evil spirits.

Then I entered a small courtroom. The only person in there was a man sitting behind a large desk on high. His vantage point was such that he could look down upon anyone else in the room, like a  priest presiding over a Mass. So I figured this guy must be the judge, even though he wasn’t wearing a robe or a powdered wig or anything like that. He wasn’t even wearing a tie.

I sat before the judge and he told me to raise my right hand. I told him I was physically unable to do that. He smiled a warm, awkward smile of dispensation and moved on to the next step in the proceedings.

I wondered if this might be one of those times when my  crippledness works in my favor. Because I ‘ve noticed that playing up the cripple angle seems to be a popular strategy for celebrity defendants. When Bill Cosby got in trouble with the law, he tapped around the courthouse with a white cane and made it real clear how blind he was. Harvey Weinstein walked with a walker.  And former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert showed up in a wheelchair.

Maybe these guys were all playing the cripple card and throwing themselves at the mercy of the court. I don’t know. But it must not have worked very well because they all got convicted.

The judge dismissed my parking ticket so maybe my crippledness worked for me. Or maybe I just presented a good case. I don't know and I didn’t ask. I just thanked him and got the hell out of there.

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