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Ticket in the U.S.A.

Adriana Pratt | Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Dear Miley Cyrus,

I fully expect you to pay my $160 speeding ticket.  It’s your fault, after all, that I got pulled over Wednesday night and cited for going 14 miles over the speed limit.

On Wednesday night, I decided to be the oldest child that moms love and siblings are grateful for by picking up my 16-year-old sister and her pals from a Halloween party. It was enough of a good deed to take time out of my uber-packed (not) Wednesday night to run an errand, but to on top of that drive around seven teenage girls was Nobel patience-prize worthy. If I had to hear one more time how Betty* almost grinded with Bobby* but not quite because they didn’t actually come within 10 feet of each other, I might have gone insane. (*Names have been changed to protect privacy.)

My one and only savior that quickly turned into the devil was “Party in the U.S.A.” I was slowly but surely losing all hope in teenage-kind when, thank heavens, faint whisperings of Miley’s song leaked through the car speakers. I desperately latched onto the volume dial and cranked it up, substituting my sister and her friends’ screeches for Miley’s.

My muscles relaxed, my mind relaxed and all was good in the world. My car’s passengers (finally) stopped their chattering and joined in a unified singing of the chorus line. Miracles do happen. “Party in the U.S.A.” might just be the solution for world peace. I bet if you put Kim Jong Il and Barack Obama in a room and blared this song over the speakers, something might just get accomplished.

Anyways, I might have maybe gotten just a little too into the song because, before I knew it, red and blue flashing lights danced in my rearview mirror as a “shark,” as I so fondly call police officers, pulled me over.  Chills of nervous anticipation ran through my body as I shakily turned down the volume of the radio and did a panicked search for my driver’s license. It was nowhere to be found.

“License and registration,” the cop barked through my rolled down window. I meekly admitted I had left my license at home and thrust my mom’s car’s registration at him. My mother would have been proud of the disappointed look he whipped out. He must be a parent.

I was too scared to roll up the window while he headed to his car to check that I wasn’t a criminal, but I probably should have taken the risk once I heard the suggestions coming out of my passengers’ mouths. “A, you should cry!” was the most appropriate.

After what felt like an eternity and a half, the cop finally returned and handed me that white slip of glory, a.k.a. my first-ever speeding ticket. The neon green paper detailing the expense of my fine was an added bonus.

The irony of it all is that, just that very day, I had made my Facebook status, “Today is a “Party in the U.S.A.” on replay kind of day.” Miley, I don’t feel like getting me a ticket was a very nice way to repay me for singing your praises.

“Party in the U.S.A.” is supposed to evoke feelings of happiness, excitement and joy, taking you back to memories of cramped and sweaty dorm parties and boys proving just how cool they are by belting out every line. It is not supposed to rob you of your speeding-ticket virginity.

I was wrong when I wrote in a previous article (“Party in the U.S.A.: Party Starter,” Sept. 29), “Just let your head nod like ‘yeah’ and your hips move like ‘yeah’ and you won’t regret it.” Losing yourself to a Miley song while at the wheel of a moving vehicle is not a commendable idea and unfortunately, you just might regret it.