Sunday, April 17, 2011

Kate wrote to tell me that I've been too cryptic about the Georgia saga. Now that the boy has a valid driver's license and insurance, I'll try to recount events to the best of my knowledge.

It does not involve anything so heinous as an accident or DUI. It's a tale of ignorance and neglect, a failure to recognize that valid "communication" in our current society extends beyond text-messaging and Facebook.

Let's go on:

On a spring day in Decatur, GA, the boy is stopped by an officer for "driving too fast for conditions," whatever that means. In the course of writing that citation, s/he finds that the registration of the vehicle has expired, the car has not been registered in Georgia, the driver's license has expired, the driver has failed to transfer his driver's license to GA, and there's an "open container" in the car, which the driver insists to me is an empty beer can.

A smart, responsible person would have hustled his butt to the nearest office of the GA Department of Driver Services and taken care of four of those things, and presented evidence to the Dekalb Recorder's Court. Not this one, though. He drops the citation in the glove box and never looks at it again.

He does get the GA driver's license sometime down the road.

The court date comes and goes. The driver doesn't look at regular snail mail. Who uses mail anymore? Duh.

Years pass. At Christmas in 2010, he re-registers the car in Louisiana, the Dekalb Recorder's Court grows impatient, issues six warrants for arrest and suspends the driver's license for "failure to appear." The driver doesn't know this because it didn't show up on Facebook.

The driver is caught driving with a suspended license and gets hauled off to the pokey. The driver calls Daddy.

Daddy bails the driver out with the help of the driver's local friend, and finally, the driver appears in court. Daddy pays fines.

The driver goes to the DDS to reinstate the license. No go. Daddy calls the driver's mother. There are more charges outstanding. The driver goes to the courthouse, pays fines, and finds that there are more charges outstanding. These are turned over to a probation service.

And that's where I come in, dealing with the probation service, the Recorder's Court and the GA DDS. I am doing this because the driver has relocated his sorry self to Louisiana and is working.

And here we are.

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