I bundled up five kids today and set off in the minivan. I dumped off Sara and a friend at the friend’s house and continued on with just the three kids, heading for Sprawl-Mart for groceries and to begin pricing MP3 players, what I’d decided to get Kim for V-Day. Ah, but the children were hungry. They’re always hungry, but it was lunchtime, so I decided to suck it up and go to McDonald’s since that’s what they wanted. Got in the wrong lane and ended up on a ramp heading for Interstate 35. That’s when the cop behind me turned on his lights and siren.
I suspected I had a burned out tail light. I mean, I hadn’t run the stoplight, wasn’t speeding, had my seatbelt on, the kids were all strapped down. So I asked the cop if I’d done something wrong.
The van’s tag was expired. Not just a little bit. It expired in May 2004. Yup. Eight freakin months ago. This is my wife’s vehicle. She generally brings in the mail and pays the bills since I’m at work when the mail goes and because I’ve tried taking over the bills and cannot figure out her system before checks start bouncing. (That’s an entry for some other time.) Anyway, if we got a reminder about the tag being due, she must have lost it. And she never bothered to check her tag to see when it was due.
I was hoping the cop would give me a warning. Nope. Got the ticket. I have to call Monday to find out how much it is. He did give us a break, though. If the tag is more than 90 days past expiration he’s supposed to have the vehicle impounded. But since I had three kids in the van — two under the age of five — he told me to just go home and park the van until the tag is updated.
That’s a real kick in the balls to what otherwise has been a good day. Despite having a bad headache that’s stretching down my neck and into my shoulders, I’ve felt like a kid at Christmas. Kirk’s ( ) art for Call to the Hunt is fantastic, as I might have mentioned. But today he’s sent me the new cover for the new version of Shara and it is unbelievable. I mean it. Seeing these covers, knowing that I’ll soon have books to go inside them, is a good, good feeling. People will buy the books to have the cover art. Hopefully I can get those bad boys on my Web site soon.