the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

I Parked My Car in San Francisco

Random Girl on San Francisco cable car:  “Hey, Neilochka.  C’mon over tonight with your Talking Penis and I’ll cook you guys some Rice-a-Roni, a San Francisco Treat!  Leave Sophia back at the hotel!”

Presents from Bloggers  – Napa – Mendocinio – Eureka – Redwoods – Oregon Coast – Portland – Ashland – and the longest birthday celebration ever continues with our arrival in San Francisco today.  We’re staying at the spiffy Omni Hotel, where the only option is parking your car for $48 a night!  $48 dollars a night!  I can stay at a Motel 6 for the same price as parking my car.  Luckily, it is the weekend, and I found a nearby garage where I can park my car for twelve dollars a night.

I mentioned in my last post that Sophia was stopped twice by Oregon Highway Patrol and smiled her way out of each ticket.  Today, it was my turn to drive the six hours from Ashland to San Francisco.

Sophia:  “You’re driving 65 on the freeway.”

Neil:  “You’re supposed to drive 65 on the freeway.”

Sophia:  “No one drives 65 on the freeway.  It’s dangerous.  Everyone is passing you.” 

Neil:  “I don’t want to be stopped by the police.”

Sophia: “No one is going to stop you if you stay the same speed as everyone else.  I want to get to San Francisco today.”

A half hour later, in the Mount Shasta area of California, I noticed the twirling lights of the Highway Patrol in my rear view mirror.  I pulled over.  An officer slowly walked to my window.  I kept my hands on the steering wheel so he doesn’t think I’m armed.  I smiled nervously.  This was the FIRST TIME I”ve ever been stopped on the freeway. 

And yes, I received my first traffic ticket, despite my smiling.   Thank you very much, Sophia!  So much for my perfect status as a Citizen of the Month.


  1. deezee

    So, spill. How fast were you going?? (and maybe Sophia should read my recent post about speeding…)

  2. Karl

    Neil, you rebellious scallywag, you.

  3. Karl

    By the way, did you pop a cap in his ass? Cuz that’s the way you Californians roll, isn’t it?

  4. Sizz

    there is a first time for everything. too bad you don’t have boobs. they totally help in such situations. 😉

  5. churlita

    You better watch out, or your wife will lead you astray. Wouldn’t that be fun?

  6. V-Grrrl

    I can sympathize Neil. I’m a Good Grrrl behind the wheel. Was pulled over once and not ticketed but honestly, I was SO UPSET just because I’d been lectured.

  7. lizardek

    How come Sophia didn’t smile you out of that one? Was she too busy laughing her head off??

  8. Finn

    Well I hope she at least made it up to you later… no? Sorry.

  9. Alison

    Heheh. I bet Sophia was laughing her head off at that one. 🙂

  10. Rabbit

    I drive about the same speed as the rest of traffic. I try to be the slowest speeding car. It must work because I’ve never gotten pulled over. I wonder if they let you off with a warning if you cry.

  11. Jenn

    It’s not the smile that does it. It’s cleavage, and then tears if that doesn’t work. It was much more manly of you to take the ticket than to stoop to those tactics. And I glad you didn’t try to have your penis negotiate! Probably wouldn’t have ended well.

  12. Danny

    Wait, I’m still stuck on the part about parking at your hotel costing FORTY-EIGHT FREAKING DOLLARS a night! Jesus, do they have turn-down service for the cars with free Godiva chocolates on their pillows?

    Oh crap, a speeding ticket. You should have just let Sophia drive. As I’ve said before in a similarly hideous generalization, women are the WORST passengers, especially when you’re married to them (forgive me, Sophia!). Good news: you can now do traffic school online and it’s a total joke. Way better than the 8 consecutive hours I had to spend at the Comedy Improv traffic school for my last ticket (but we did get “free” pizza).

  13. Bre

    Did you cry? That always works for me…

  14. plain jane

    If Sophia told you to jump off a bridge would you do it?! Tsk. Tsk. Tsk.

  15. Neil

    Deezee – I was going 82. But the officer reduced it to 70 because he saw how nervous I was when I dropped my driver’s license under my seat.

    Plain Jane — Perhaps if it was the golden gate bridge.

  16. Nance

    Karl–sigh. that’s “pop a cap up in his “dome”. at least that’s how we roll in in cleveland. sorry i had to put you out there like that.

    peace out.

  17. Jurgen Nation

    Hooray!!! I get to meet you and Sophia tomorrow!!

  18. Two Roads

    Neil, the rule is 15 mph over the speed limit and no ticket. 17 mph is what you got in trouble not Sophia. You don’t get out much do you???? Come to Atlanta – not only do we have the NASCAR Atlanta Motor Speedway but we have a mini version of the autobahn on the 4 major highways around the city!

  19. Two Roads

    Also, at 48 bucks a night for the car I would have found a garage too! Good work.

  20. Dagny

    Ha! Years ago it cost about $300 a month for a parking space in SF. Don’t know what it’s up to now. In some areas, parking is a near impossible thing. Until they raised the ticket to $50, I used to regularly park on the sidewalk in some neighborhoods — because parking was that hard to find. The ticket was only $25 back then and I didn’t always get one. I know. Scary that I said “only.” That is why Buzzgirl and I selected a location that is completely BART-able for me. I know there is no way possible that I want to drive into SF tomorrow (anti-war rally) and try to find parking.

  21. psychomom

    Wow, a man who does what his wife says. I think she should pay the fine.

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