A forum discussion about cops and traffic stops reminded me of this memory from my youth.
I file this snippet of my life under "Best Lines I Never Used".
Many, many, many moons ago (back when I was 18), I was taking a risk and speeding to work through a part of the South Bay Area sprawl known as Campbell. Campbell was well known amongst my friends for having more than it's fair share of really dickish cops. We all tried our best to not get pulled over in that town because there was no talking your way out of the ticket. However, I was late.
So, predictably, I got nabbed only a few miles from work. The cop pulls me over and takes his time coming up to my window. When he gets there, I can see that he's already pissed off about something. He gives me a little lecture, and then asks me if I knew what the speed limit was.
I actually didn't, but it just so happens he pulled me over right in front of a speed limit sign. I look up at it and say, "uh... 35?"
"Do you know how fast you were going?"
"53 miles per hour."
Now, this is what I should have said: "But, officer, I'm dyslexic!"
It only would have made things worse, but what was he gonna do? Write me a ticket for being a smart ass on top of the speeding?
I still kick myself and use it as a reminder to always go with the instinct, because "one time, I said to this cop..." makes for a better story than "one time, I thought of something to say to this cop..."