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Need For Speed This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.


   I hate to drive, but when I do, I go fast. I actually have what some call alead-foot - my foot weighs heavy on the accelerator. I have had my license for ayear and a half, and to my parents' surprise, I have a squeaky-clean drivingrecord. Although I am constantly told to slow down, I refuse.

I grew upin a small suburban town with long, winding streets and speed limits of 25 milesper hour. My parents, however, taught me to drive in their hometown of Boston.With its short, one-way streets and quick stops, I quickly learned to drivewithout limitations. I am best at driving in traffic. I cut people off, do notallow anyone to pass, and speed up in the breakdown lane, cutting in before theexits. I once drove from Scituate to Cambridge (usually an hour drive) in 36minutes. I have the "Need for Speed." I do not plan to speed or thinkit's fun, it just happens. I do not even realize how fast I am going. This allbecame clear to me one night.

As I came around the corner, not far from myhouse, I heard it - a siren. Then I saw the blue-and-white flashing lights in myrearview mirror. I slowly pulled over to the curb. I was shaking and could notmove. The officer took his sweet time getting to my car. The minute he knockedand signalled for me to roll down my window, the tears came. His"I-am-going-to-enjoy-this" tone made my hands shake even more. He askedfor my license and registration and I handed him both. I began crying andapologizing. He asked if I knew how fast I was going, and I couldn't lie - I'dbeen pushing 50.

He returned to my car 20 minutes later; what do they doin their car for so long? He handed me back my license and registration, and as Iwas fumbling to put everything back, he told me I would receive a verbal warning.I froze in shock: no ticket, no jail, no walk a straight line, and my parentswould not find out.

I was breathless, thanking him. He gave me alecture about being more careful, which I heard with complete attention. I couldnot believe that I did not get in trouble. I was so relieved.

The officerwalked back to his car, and I collected my thoughts. I pulled out slowly anddrove five miles per hour as the police car drove behind me. As I pulled into mydriveway, I knew I had been very lucky, and that I had to become a moreresponsible driver. As the months passed I definitely slowed down. I finallylearned my driving limitations.




This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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