In case you never noticed, you should have two stickers on your license plate—one with the month of renewal and one with the year. If you unthinkingly cover the month sticker with the year sticker, the cops will pull you over—in front of all your neighbors.
In addition to getting pulled over in sight of my house on my way home from work today, this morning I discovered that half of the 24 hour cultures needed for today’s labs were contaminated. When I was doing a Gram stain on them to make sure, the random microscope I chose from one of the teaching labs was not only dirty but a plastic part of it had been twisted around in a bad way (and this is a month and a half after I caused a stink about the lack of TA/student care of these expensive microscopes).
When I finally got home after sitting in my car while the cops ran my information on their computer (two cops—one for each side of my car while the main one talked to me—I’m a dangerous looking character), I discovered that the dogs had been busy while we were away. They’d managed to wet my favorite chair through its protective covering (a blanket, not a thin sheet, but an honest-to-goodness blanket). And, one-who-shall-remain-nameless had pulled on the runner on the kitchen table–scattering a box thumb tacks all over the kitchen floor–in order to carry off a half-full package of dinner napkins (why???).
But I didn’t get a ticket (the cop was really very nice and gave me plenty of time to find my wallet, which was in my tote instead of my purse.). I fixed the microscope and, with a little extra work, compensated for the unusable cultures and cleaned up after the dogs. Yet, even during the day’s dramas, I knew I didn’t really have a reason to be upset. I hadn’t lost a loved one fighting for my country’s freedom like many in Ukraine, I have a job and a car, and I have friends to talk to about my good and bad days. And I know that the King of the universe loves me and wants me to be His no matter how many cultures I contaminate or tickets I get or almost get. He even had the foresight to have several lessons about the trap of self-pity fresh in my mind.