Archive for October, 2007

Can’t We All Just….Get It On?

October 21, 2007. Sunday afternoon cruising on the 405. Traffic suddenly slows to 20 mph. I’m so close to my exit too… What’s the hold up? Oh, of course. It’s a stupid cop giving a ticket to a black SUV. They’re almost blocking traffic as the shoulder isn’t much wider than a bike lane. Why does everyone have to stop and look? Geez, the car in front of me has an open mile ahead of him, but he’s too busy watching the dumb cop write a ticket. I’m going around this fool.

These are the thoughts bouncing around in my head as I maneuver my car and talk to my Mom on bluetooth. I drive around the car in front of me. It seems to be a more civilized move than honking my horn. I’m just yards away from my exit when the cop steps out in front of my car and directs me to pull over to the side of the freeway. I am stunned. He’s a multi-tasker, just like me. I’ve never seen a cop pull someone over on foot while ticketing someone else. Why am I in trouble? He’s the one causing all of the congestion. He should have picked a safer place to make his quota.

The cop motions for me to roll down my window.
C: Pull over. You crossed over the shoulder line. I need your driver’s license.

I am shocked. Why is this happening to me? No, why have I attracted this? Why did I pull over? I could have driven off. I need to be less obedient. This is precisely why I hate cops. They’re petty, unfair, and cocky. The cop is a big, intimidating, African American man. He’s surprisingly fit and isn’t sporting a doughnut belly. But like all the others, he doesn’t have a heart. He takes my license and struts over to his motorcycle.

I see him filling out a ticket. I am seething. I am cursing him. I know I shouldn’t be, but I’m angry that he has the power to punish me for not being mesmerized by his power trip circus. He can’t stand by my window to speak to me without getting run over. Good. I hope he gets hit by a car. He deserves it. I know I should be above these hateful thoughts. What would Amma do? Oh, Amma’s too evolved to live in LA. Breathe Jeanne. I repeat my mantra in my head. I can’t do anything about this situation, so I might as well not stress myself out. This is already happening. Accept what is. It’s just money. It’s not right to wish death and destruction upon anyone. The cop periodically looks over at me while he fills out the ticket. I can feel his evil eyes observing my anger, sadness, hate, and after about 15 minutes… I surrender. I laugh to myself at the situation.
Mr. Bacon delivers a ticket to the black SUV and is now headed for me. He stands in front of my car.

C: I need your insurance and registration, and I need you to get out of your car.

I can’t believe this. I have to step into traffic to retrieve my ticket? I have to stand by the side of the 405 for everyone to see? Should I prepare an acceptance speech? I hope I’m getting Equity wages for being in Act 2 of his freeway play. Why doesn’t he just hand me the f-ing ticket?

I get out of my car with dread. I’m done. I have always been the girl that refuses to cry, play the sex card, or beg a cop for mercy. My motto: they’re not worth a tear or a tit. I’ve always felt that they didn’t deserve any energy whatsoever. I sense every cop’s desperate need to feel important and all powerful, so I give them nothing. I usually sit and look straight ahead as they do their song and dance. I quietly ask them to give me the ticket, and I drive away. I don’t have a plan for this. I’ve never been asked to step out of my vehicle. I am being forced to deal with this cop instead of staring defiantly at my dashboard. I feel an extreme urge to voice my opinion. I approach this giant man, puzzled.

J: Can I ask you a question?
C: Sure.

I point to my off ramp a few yards away.

J: That’s my exit. Traffic is all backed up because everyone is busy looking at YOU. The car in front of me had a mile of space in front of him. They were so busy checking you out that I had to go around them to get to my exit. And I’m the one getting a ticket??

C: What? They weren’t looking at me.
J: Yes they were. Everyone was looking at you because you look…the way you look.
C:How do I look?
J:Like a bad ass. Didn’t you see how traffic was stopped because everyone was checking you out? It was like they were hoping you’d turn into a stripper cop and take off your uniform.

I can’t believe I just said that. This is not a joking matter. Who cares? I already saw him write my ticket. Might as well say what I think.
The cop’s stern demeanor crumbles in an instant. He is completely taken aback by my frank evaluation. He laughs. I can’t believe this man is capable of smiling. In this instant he is like an old friend. I feel completely comfortable giving him crap.

C:They weren’t looking at me. They were probably looking at you.
J :You know they were checking you out. They were hoping that you were going to take it all off and dance.

We laugh. This is weird. The cop is completely flattered, intrigued, and amused. I am baffled by my behavior. I’m supposed to be a cop hater. Why am I making him laugh and feel good? I only do that for my friends. Somehow, the cop has transformed into a human being before my eyes. He looks at my license.

C: We’re neighbors!
J: What?! Where do you live?
C: A few blocks from you. It’s a really peaceful neighborhood.
J: I know. I love it.

Oh my God. Cops are people who live in houses. They don’t shoot out of Satan’s ass on their motorcycles. They actually live in houses, houses that are in my neighborhood. We begin to chat. He asks me what I do for a living. He asks me what shows I’ve been on. He quickly explains why dipping into the shoulder of the freeway is dangerous. I listen, but care little about defending my petty $200 infraction. We talk some more. I tell him I was just on my way to the gym. He’s smiling ear to ear. I’ve never stood by the side of the freeway and laughed with a cop after being pulled over. He smiles at me, hands me my license and registration, and tells me to have a nice day. No ticket in sight. I’m stunned.

J: What, you’re not going to….. take your clothes off for me?

We bust out laughing. He knows I’m just teasing. The whole thing is surreal. I have made his day and he has made mine.

I walk away in amazement. Note to self: cops like to be sexually harassed. That’s odd, I’m actually happy that I made him feel good about himself. The words came out of my mouth without a thought or care. It was like a really good improvisation. I was being myself in a situation where I am usually anything but myself. I was in the moment. Using instinct, instead of strategy. In that moment I had penetrated the wall that exists between human beings. The wall that says, “Stay this many feet away, I’m going to overpower you, I’m better than you, I’m stronger than you, I hate people like you.” My true self was in the driver’s seat for once. The reward for expressing my feelings…in a light and frothy way, was immense. I’m happy that I avoided a ticket. But it wasn’t about outsmarting or manipulating a cop. We had both been given the gift of seeing the humanity in eachother and embracing it.

TJ MAXX, Airdates, & More

Hello out there!

I recently attended two standout screenings:

Sean Penn’s Into the Wild was an unexpected adventure. The film is based on the true life story of Christopher McCandless. Apparently I was living under a rock when his story was in the press, so the film was full of surprises for me. Aside from a slow section towards the middle, it was an inspiring and insightful journey. Hal Holbrook was amazing in this film. I am reading the book now.

Adam Rifkin’s Look is an art house-y high concept film with a lot of commercial appeal (sans stars). Shot entirely from the point of view of security cameras, the film follows several interweaving story lines over the course of a week. Look is a film about the things that people do when they don’t know they’re being watched. This film doesn’t miss a beat. Loved it!

I liked these films because they manage to be funny, raw, disturbing, and thought provoking- without taking sides.

Thank you for your Jeanne sightings! What would I do without you? Yes, my TJ Maxx Commercial is running and I was on Dharma and Greg last week. I always appreciate your support and caring. I was thrilled to know that the TJ Maxx spot is airing during the Oprah show. Ah, one step closer to Oprah! 😉 Here are some more listings:

Sun. Oct. 14
10:00 PM
Lethal Weapon 4
Tue. Oct. 16
1:00 AM
Without a Trace
Nickel and Dimed: Part 2

I’ve been getting offers to do martial arts stuff lately and, sadly,I have a rotator cuff injury right now. I’m in physical therapy working hard to regain my strength. I can’t wait to get back out there.

Meanwhile, my gym is still broadcasting the Food channel. The other day, they took it a step further. An open vodka bar, pizza, sushi, and other workout reversing delights greeted me on my way out. Those little devils!

Life is good. I am happily busy while finding time to savor the simple pleasures in life. Recent highlights: Stomping on grapes in a Santa Barbara vineyard, and exploring Solvang for the first time. Girl’s night out went sour when we stopped by bar Nineteen 12 at the Beverly Hills Hotel (where photo taking and enjoying yourself are strictly prohibited). Luckily we escaped to Opera, where a private table of endless cocktails awaited us as we danced the night away.

I’ve also been serving on the board of a new non-profit charity group called LEAP. Ladies for Empowerment, Altruism and Philanthropy. Our goal is to empower women by providing human and financial resources to incubate and enhance female owned enterprises and public benefit non-profits in all stages of development. I am excited about the limitless possibilities! It is a gift to start an organization from the ground up.