I spent my Saturday in school, not furthering my education, but paying my penance for zipping by a photo rador van last month.
That’s right, I did an 8 hour course from the National Safety Council, in lieu of paying the full fine, going to court. Sitting in a cramped hot hotel conference room with 50 other “violators” (and paying $120 for the pleasure) was the best option to wipe the ticket from my record.
In some ways, you have to feel for the task before the instructor- they certainly have a class of the most highly unmotivated students with a baaaaaad attitude. They have to come across with the authority temporarily invested in them, with a quasi military gusto. There are pages of statistics and state law to read, flip charts to flip, and poorly acted videos to fill time with.
Like a previously blogged experience in an online driving course required by work, the point here was to get to the finish line. And it was painful. Well, it did not hurt, but rarely has a clocked ticked so slowly.
But it was not a total loss- here are some things I learned:
* The origin of “flipping the bird”, the salute we ought not to use because of the number of armed drivers, goes back to 15th century French archers.
* There is something called “dram shop” laws that have to deal with liability when you serve liquor to people in your home.
* Police officers are trained to use Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGZ), a field test that should enable them to guess your blood alcohol level rather accurately.
I think that was it. I was not even able to day dream well.
Yup, that was my Saturday, pretty exciting.
This is the third or fourth class I’ve taken since coming to Arizona (you can only do it once every 2 years), so while I say right now I plan to never return to the class, you may wonder about its efficacy.