Friday, March 23, 2007

Enemy of the State

One of the greatest transgressions one can inflict upon the "native" population of Florida is to drive with an out-of-state plate. Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota - how dare you. New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey - you might as well bring a shoe bomb on a plane - or flash a Democrat Party Card. Now, there aren't too many Vermont plates down here, but "Floridians" know for a fact that a bright green plate is not one of the - and I swear to my God and yours this is true - over 100 varieties of Florida license plates that make it acceptable to drive on the sun soaked streets. I've said it before and I'll say it again. I was born here. I grew up here. I've lived in this state for 24 years of my life. I have rights. But somehow driving around with that beautiful green plate automatically makes me a motorized menace to other drivers. They tailgate me in the fast lane if I'm only speeding by 10 mph. They honk at traffic lights if I don't "leave early" and they give me a wave from time to time, without most of the requisite friendly fingers. I am humble, but know I'm an excellent driver. Just ask GEICO. But not the deer that offered a brake test for me. I failed. But I digress. It's been 2 months. Time for a new plate. Time to get the locals off my tail. Time for a trip to the county tax collector to pick from one of the 100+ plates for my truck. And they don't let you simply pick. You need to qualify to choose most of the plates.

For this one you need to inform them if you're with them or against them.

For this one your portfolio must contain at least 15% children but no more than 5% infants. Island children preferred.

This one is particularly deceptive. Money raised from this one goes to "Save the Manatee" -singular. It just happens to be "Mickey" the Manatee who every spring swims up to the Chesapeake Bay and has to be retrieved. Stupid Manatee.

There are plates for each of the colleges - University of Miami, Florida, North Florida, South Florida, Southeastern University, Nova Southeastern University, Bethune-Cookman (I thought that was a camping stove), Florida Hospital College of Health Sciences (that one's a liberal arts school). Plus 28 others.

To receive the US Marines plate you need to drop and do 100 or take a number and have seat, which ever you can handle. Either way a county employee will bark at you horrible things like "I BET YOU'RE GUNNA PICK THE PLATE WITH THE PINK BIRD, NANCY BOY!" (Sorry Nancy) or "I GUESS YOU LIKE MAPLE SYRUP ON YOUR PANCAKES!". Which didn't seem so much like an insult but was still frightening.

On each desk of each employee was a sign that said "Candy Bars - $1 - Raising Money for the American Lung Association", which I thought was odd, but was informed that in other county offices they sell cigarettes to raise money for the American Heart Association.

I eventually chose this one with the pretty pink "Flamingo" also known correctly as the Roseate Spoonbill. Money raised from these plates goes to support the useless effort to save the Everglades.

I tested it out right away by waiting 5 seconds after a green light while sitting in a turn lane without a signal to see what would happened (and that is true). And guess what. Nothing! I have a free pass to do whatever I like on the roads! Maybe tomorrow I'll apply suntan lotion while driving. Why not. I'm no longer an Enemy of the State.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. Darn, the kids were rooting for the sea turtle plate. What does that support?

  3. In theory - the money goes towards restoration of the Everglades ecosystem.

  4. I experienced the exact same thing, except I was in Boston with South Carolina plates. It must be some kind of regional thing.

  5. i think it was probably you. - guy from Boston

  6. Any difference from the norm is amunition for just or unjust criticsm. Race, Gender, Hair color, Liscense's silly.

  7. I am really upset that you didn't choose, "Support the Non-Retired." That would get three-quarters of the State's blood boiling.

  8. They have that plate - or a variation of that theme. I think it's called "Non Cottontops". If I spot a plate in the next few days I'll post it.