What's the most embarrassing thing that can happen to a responsible adult like me while in a car with my mother?
Yep, that's right. I got a ticket for having an expired registration on my car. I happened to get the ticket with my mother in the car next to me. The Pasadena police happened to pull me over during the only five-minute period over the past six months in which my mother has been a passenger in my car.
Apparently I was supposed to renew my registration in January. I was confused. Until I got the CRV, my registration has always been due in April. This goes back over 10 years with two cars in two states. April means springtime, baseball season, tax time, and new little stickers for my license plate. I bought the CRV used and its registration is apparently due in January. Oops. I do remember getting the notice from the DMV back around Christmas. I thought they were giving me extreme advance notice.
Luckily all I have to do is pay the registration, take the ticket and proof of regsistraion to a Pasadena judge and pay a $10 administrative fee. But the true cost of the experience is my mom saying "I can't believe this" in her most judgmental, most Swedish accent.
(And yes - I bought the CRV in 2007. When I renewed the registration in 2008, I did it in January. Yet, the April date was still stuck in my head.)
This brings me to an important issue: My level of responsibility. There is a clear discrepnacy between these elements of my life:
My Ph.D.And these elements of my life:
My alphabetized, choronologied-within-artist CD shelf
My consistently managed web presence
My reliable cat feeding behavior
My perfectly even sideburns
My irresponsibility in paying bills on timeHow do I reconcile these two lists? Is the first list really accurate? Was my Ph.D. an accident of time and circumstance? Would Lily mention that most days she gets smushies (i.e., canned food)
The frustration I have most mornings in not finding a matched pair of socks
My incomprehensible method of storing data files on my work computer
The number of CD boxes on the perfectly organized shelf that are missing their CDs
My worse-than-it-needs-to-be credit card debt (but yes I have plan)
in the morning but sometimes she has to wait until the evening? (She always has dry food and water though. Always.) Are my sideburns really even?
Rather than analyzing and reconciling the two "sides" of me, I will simply resolve to be more responsible from this point on. My upcoming move will simplify my life a bit. I'll have to get rid of some unnecessary stuff. The lower rent will put a dent in the debt. (That last sentence is pure poetry.) I'll make a spreadsheet of my responsibilities. I'll put it on my refrigerator if only I had a big refrigerator magnet. I'll take walks along the ocean and look out at the sailboats and the cargo ships. I'll pair up my socks and buy some new ones because I deserve it.