For the non-Californians out there, July 1st was the first day it became illegal to put a cell phone to your ear while driving. Sure, you can still look down at your phone and text. You can still scrutinize the screen of your phone and use GPS if you have it. (Heck, I still do cautiously for the sake of driving directions – with Google Maps Mobile and their “approximate” GPS-by-tower locator.) But you can’t be seen talking on the cell phone without a hands-free kit. Rules are rules, right?
By July 3rd, I met someone who had already gotten a ticket. The cost? $25.
But – early cell phone citation bragging rights aside – I thought this story especially awesome. My roommate’s friend Tee was over for her birthday this week and she told the story of her getting a ticket despite that “she had a hairband ready in her car.” On July 1st, exactly.
“Yeah, the cop pulled me over and I had the hair-head-band around my head and I stuck my cell phone underneath it like this.”
She proceeded to demonstrate how she had a cell phone tucked underneath an elastic headband just above her ear.
The cop said, “You think this is a joke?”
Tee said, “What! It’s hands-free! I ain’t using my hands!”
I think that at this point in the story I couldn’t stop laughing and doubled over on the couch.
Cop: “That’s not a real hands-free device. That doesn’t count.”
The ticket might have cost $25, and if Tee keeps using her particular “hands-free” device, it will be $50 if she gets pulled over again. But the story? I thought it was priceless.
So the lesson for all you Californians out there?
The lawmakers of California are in bed with Bluetooth device manufacturers.