Rolling north up Route 9 in Monmouth County, one doesn't bat an eye when the sign says "Shift Right Ahead." Large hunks of the roadway are being torn up there. But when the Shift Right takes you into the Wendy's parking lot it gets noticed.
They weren't treating us all to small Frosties. DUI check. The officer peeked through my open window with a flashlight. "Good evening, sir." Very professional, friendly. "Have you had any alcoholic beverages this evening?"
"No, sir." (True. Sorry guys.)
[noticing my goaltender's stick along the passenger side] "Play any hockey tonight?"
"No, sir. "
I suppose if I said yes they'd have checked me for concussions as well as booze. But I wasn't tonight's winner, so I was waved along without doing the nose-pointy thing or the dwarkcab tebahpla. (Which sounds Klingon and would definitely land me in stir.) He even gave me a receipt:
A little further on the way home I saw a car on fire on Route 18, surrounded by squad cars; one of those sights that every guy can't help but think is kinda cool. And then, after dodging all of this, one of the local roads near home had a large "Road Closed" sign and a line of orange pylons.
At this point it's two in the morning; I can't see anyone doing anything, nor any line of cones on the other end of the road. I swing the Discount Chariot right around it and head for the traffic light. When I get there, a man in a parked car honks at me. Oh, that's nice - the car is marked "Department of Highways." (Have I mentioned that men are idiots?) I roll the window and look over.
"Hey, man," he says. "Don't turn left, go straight. There's three cop cars right around the corner."
Now, that was a sound use of taxpayer funds. Thank you, sir.