I was working radar speed enforcement on a local feeder. That's a street that runs through a nominal residential district but has a higher speed limit due to engineering and because it carries high transient traffic between other commercial streets. 35 mph. I clocked a Bronco doing 57, fired up the BMW and pulled the miscreant over. I advised him of the reason for the stop and requested his information. He handed over his license and was searching for registration and insurance information. I glanced at the DL and did a classic double take. The name on the license?
Just that, nothing else. No last name no nothing. Just Buddha. I caught him staring at me out of the corner of my eye. He was waiting for me to ask the obvious question. "Is that really your name? or something along those lines. I noticed he was a....rotund man. Caucasian but that means nothing. Maybe his latest reincarnation took him to the Western world? I knew he was waiting, anxious for the conversation even. But there's a little known fact about motor cops most people do not know. We crave the unusual, the odd and the farcical. We constantly try and outdo each other for the best story. Here I have the Spiritual leader of about a billion Buddhists and I'm going to let him go without proof of the encounter? I don't think so.
I firmly tamped down my inclination for followup questions, stifled my gleeful giggling and walked back to my bike. I could feel the astonishment and disappointment following me from the drivers seat of the Bronco. I checked with DMV. Valid DL. I filled out the cite and walked back to Mister Buddha. I presented him with the ticket and requested a signature.
During the entire encounter he never once spoke. I was expecting words of wisdom or perhaps a koan pertaining to the use of personal conveyances operated at supra-legal speeds. Even just a warning not to mess with the God of the Buddhists. Nothing. Nada. I was so disappointed. I did get to post a copy of the ticket of the Traffic bulletin board where it still hangs to this very day so there's that. Going down in Traffic Cop lore is nothing to sneer at.
Still. In the months and years after that ticket I was involved in 4 accidents on my motor at work. I hurt a hip, my back and tore my Achilles tendon. My hair started falling out. I shrank from just over 6 foot to my present 5-11. ish. I got a rash that won't go away. My dog bit me. Someone shot out the window in my truck. 3 times. My feet got larger and my penis smaller. I started growing hair in places where hair ain't supposed to grow and none of it was on my head. Unless my ears count. And my nose. My wisdom teeth grew back. As well as my tonsils and appendix. Which then all needed to be taken out again. I developed an intense fear of small, furry rodents and rotund, cherubic white guys.
Maybe that ticket wasn't such a good idea after all.