Rules and laws and mandates

Rules and laws and mandates

By Kay Frances

I am a law-abiding, tax-paying citizen. OK, that’s half true; I do pay my taxes. And, for the most part, I try not to break the law. But, I have to admit that there is a little rebel inside of me that just gets tired of being told what to do. Let’s face it — a lot of laws simply don’t make sense.

Years ago, I was a morning radio personality in Dayton. I had to be on the air at 5 a.m. which meant leaving at 4:15 a.m. Are you following the math here? This means I had to be up at 3:30 a.m. That’s if I cared what I looked like, but since it was radio, I didn’t care and got up at 4 a.m. I still arrived at work with the sheets marks on my face, but at least I’d run a comb through my hair and swish some toothpaste around in my mouth.

Sometimes, I would hit the snooze button one times too many, and I freely admit to running a couple of red lights when there was no one around. I mean, what crazy person is up at that ungodly hour? I think at that time of the night, traffic lights and speed limits are not so much “laws” as suggestions.

A part of me prides myself in being “obedient” and a “good citizen,” but then there is the other part of me who wants to break the rules just because they’re there, even if they are for my own good.

For example, when I get an X-ray taken, they ask me to stay perfectly still and hold my breath. Even though they ask very nicely, a small part of me wants to jump around, flailing my arms wildly just as they are taking the picture. I don’t, of course, but the temptation is there.

And, wouldn’t it be nice to get through the day without being heckled and bossed around by a machine? Between my computer demanding that I retype passwords, the GPS lady screeching “Recalculating! Recalculating!” and the U-Scan lady, I don’t know how I make it through the day with any dignity left at all. No wonder I feel the urge to rebel!

And, what an attitude that U-Scan lady has:

“Please place the items in the bag. IN. THE. BAG. You’re killing me here!” Her voice is laden with sarcasm, and I can almost hear the machine rolling its eyes.

And, then it turns into my mother:

“Don’t forget your change. Don’t forget your umbrella. Don’t forget to give me grandchildren.”

It’s exhausting!

Obviously, we can’t all go around breaking the law or our civilized society would dissolve into anarchy. But, I think it is our civic duty to break the rules now and then. So, when you see that tag on your mattress that orders, “DO NOT REMOVE,” rip it off with abandon. Not today, mattress, not today.

Salt Magazine