Breaking Rules

Early yesterday morning, I took a road trip to Miami for business and, me being me, I hit the road around 4:30 in order to get a jump on traffic.

I much prefer driving in the darkness at the start of a long trip than later in the day coming home in the darkness, with worn out eyes and exhaustion just a few miles ahead.

The first bit of the drive is an hour an a half of non-interstate, so speed isn’t much of an option. By the time I get to the turnpike, that accelerator pedal is itching under my right foot and it takes almost no pressure to suddenly find yourself cruising at 90.

So perhaps 90 isn’t an ideal speed for taking sunrise shots out your window but with the camera sitting on the seat beside me, I couldn’t resist. I hope you like these three shots!

Thankfully none of the speed traps caught my early morning high-jinx, even though they caught many of my unfortunate fellow-travelers along the route.

In one of these shots, you can see the SUV had just sped past a trooper when he lit up the morning and sped after him. I was thrilled to get that one, even if it carried a certain guilt associated with it as I saw them pull off to the shoulder in my rear view mirror.

But it got me thinking about this whole concept of rules and then breaking them. How useless certain rules are because everyone breaks them, and how important others are because we need to have a civil society rather than a wild west world.

I mean, some of us fail to come to a complete stop at a stop sign while there is no traffic around and a traffic camera catches us and dishes out a $275 ticket. Others pop tic-tacs, grab young women’s pussies (not my words, ladies and gentlemen) and we make them president.

Some of us worry about reporting every dollar of earnings come tax time, while others use hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars to coerce foreign leaders into getting them reelected.

So, forgive me if I have a slight skepticism about rules.

Generally speaking I follow the normal rules of engagement with people I meet. I try to avoid lying to them, show them respect and treat all with dignity. I avoid talking behind their backs and try to keep my behavior above board and my intentions obvious.

When it comes to rules that are government mandated, and class-based, I flaunt them whenever I think I can get away with it. I owe no allegiance to a system that has one set of rules for the ordinary person, while the wealthy live their lives above it all.

Perhaps it is the Irish in me. We were taught to rebel at an early age. British invaders had raped and pillaged the country for centuries without apology and under the guise of British rule.

So now when I experience a rule that is mandated on an issue I disagree with, then I put my foot to the floor and race towards the sunrise.

I fully understand that one day I will likely see the blue lights shining closer in my rear view mirror, but what is life if we we can’t live at least some of it on our own terms?

In the words of Oscar Wilde, when confronted with archaic rules that sought to enforce anti-gay fervor, “Fuck them all!”

OK, I confess, I might have paraphrased him slightly. Oops that’s another rule broken!