Making a Fool of Myself

So have you ever been so awkward words just flood out of your mouth? Yes? oh good it’s not just me. No? oh well its rather embarrassing. I discovered this about myself recently. Not only do I get awkward and say weird things in awkward situations, but I make sure to do it when I’m nervous, or it is most definitely socially unacceptable. 

This last week I had to go to traffic court for a speeding ticket I had gotten a while back when I went to visit a friend. Well, if you have never been to court, it can be nerve racking. So while my nerves are at all time high and I didn’t know what to expect. Well, I am sitting there in a room full of other people there for the same reason, and it’s my turn to go and plead my case.

Cue one of the most embarrassingly awkward encounters I have ever had in the most inappropriate place.

Let me set the scene a little. There is a square “U” formation with the judge right in front the DA to one side and some other insignificant people that I don’t know who they were, but are not relevant to the story I am about to tell. I watched a bunch of people go and do their case and kinda understood what was going on but still really didn’t know and the only way I kinda knew was because of my mom came with me…I know I am 21 but that doesn’t mean I don’t still need my mom!

After a while it is my turn to go and speak with the judge, in front of the other people that haven’t been dismissed yet might I add! So let’s do some math shall we? 1 awkward and overly sarcastic person who has no idea what’s going on + 6 or so audience members to watch + A judge that thank god had a sense of humor, that all adds up to my most ridiculous moment I’ve ever had.

Here I am, standing in front of the judge, and he asks me if I plea guilty and goes through the same speech I had heard at least 15 other times (I’m not saying that this towns a speed trap…but I am saying that this town is indeed a speed trap). After all the official stuff he asks me if I have anything I’d like to say.

I had been fighting sarcastic comments the last hour and here is where it really came out. I start explaining my case saying that I was lost and that where I was pulled over was a couple miles from where I was clocked for speeding , I wasn’t going as fast as the cop said I was, and I was misquoted on the ticket to make it look like I was knowingly speeding.

The judge begins to ask questions. This scares the heck out of me, someone official and with power asking me questions even though I’ve done nothing wrong. He asked what I did for a living to which I replied I was a full time student at Brenau University, and he asked where that was, which I told him, with a little bit of babbling. Then he out of the blue asks if he had me take a drug test would I pass? I was taken aback at this and that shock allowed my sarcasm and jokes to come out. When he asks this I answer yes I would pass, and without allowing much of a pause immediately ask “Why, do I look like I do drugs?!”

He just responded with a simple “No, I’m just asking questions” to which I eloquently and ridiculously responded “Oh I see, just keeping it fresh, don’t want it to get boring.” and I immediately face-palmed.

Lucky for me he thought it was a little funny and went along with it saying yeah just “keepin’ it fresh”. Then we get to the part where he asks would I be able to pay the ticket that day.

In case you didn’t notice, I explained there, and here, that I am a full time student. That meant I had no job. No job means I have no money. No money means I cannot pay a ticket. Because of that predicament, I respond “Well, I could beg my mommy to pay it.”

Yes, you read that right. I said I could beg my “mommy”! That is definitely what a normal person would say. He asked if my mom was there which she was and she stepped up and said she could. He replied with “We don’t want your mom’s money, we want your money.” Well this would be one of those times, that again, I would say something you wouldn’t say to a judge.”Well I have about $1.71 in my bank account that BB&T reminds me about everyday, would that work for you?”

It did get a little laugh, but it wasn’t and he said my mom could pay for it with a few concessions. None of these concessions were serious but they were in fact in response to my ridiculous statements before. I have to pay my mom back, and for the next 12 months my mom is my probation officer and I have to work for her to pay off my debt. I was still sarcastic and ridiculous with that but thankfully it didn’t get me into any trouble.

So, what’s the moral of this story? It’s if you get a speeding ticket and end up in traffic court don’t be sarcastic or your mom is going to be your probation officer. Also in extremely awkward circumstances I suddenly feel the need to be a stand-up comedian and that is not appreciated, nor is it appropriate, for a courtroom.

I’d say I’ll work on this but I’ve done this in job interviews and meetings with professors, so it appears I will always be eternally awkward in professional settings.


Yours most awkwardly,

McKenna Jean


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