I Shouldn’t Have Offered to Drive Her Home

don't drink and drive

Meet “Jason”, age 26

I’ll never forget that party after Jenny’s graduation open house. It should have been all happy memories. God, I wish they were.

I liked Jenny’s friend Sarah. Sarah was beautiful, and fun. We would go cruising with friends on the backroads and when it was Sarah’s turn to drive, she would always go the fastest. Pushing 100. Long blonde hair blowing in my face.

There were always other guys around, douche bags she would flirt with. One of them, Chris, dealt pot outside school like every day. I had no idea how he didn’t get caught. He was one of those skinny punk types, holey t-shirts, blue hair. Pierced everywhere.

For once, Chris wasn’t around. None of the douche bags were, because Jenny didn’t run with that crowd. It was my chance to get Sarah alone for once.

It was a barn burner out on some farm. A couple of kegs, jungle juice in a metal trough. Eminem on the stereo. There was Sarah, dancing with some girls with a cup in her hand.

I wasn’t much of a drinker but I needed some liquid courage. I got myself loose enough that I could get close and dance with the girls around Sarah. By the time I got over there they were about done, started playing quarters. All I wanted to do was get Sarah alone and tell her I liked her, but she wanted to drink. So I drank.

I was pretty wasted when I noticed Chris had shown up. It was so easy to tell he was dealing. Jenny about gagged when she saw him. She wasn’t a fan either.

Sarah started talking to him and I just couldn’t stand it. I went over there and heard her tell Chris she wanted to go home.

So what went through my mind was, I got two choices. I can let her go home with a drug dealer and probably get into all kinds of trouble, or I could do something about it.

I stepped up and told her I was heading out. I could give her a ride.

When we got in my car I was feeling pretty good. She was in a good mood, talking about how much fun she’d had at the party, looking forward to the summer. I thought this drive, right now, this was my chance to tell her how I felt about her.

It was a warm June night. We had the windows open, she was sticking her head out the window, imitating her dog. I was laughing. She told me to go faster.

It was an open county road. We’d gone cruising here a million times. But it was dark, and even though I didn’t admit it to myself at the time, I was drunk.

I missed my turn. When I realized it, I slammed on the brakes, skidded on gravel … too close to city limits. There were lots of graduation parties going on that night so the cops were out, ready to catch idiots like me.

I did a U-turn and started to speed up. Too fast. Sarah grabbed my arm and told me she was about to puke. I pulled over, she got sick in the ditch, and that’s when I saw the red and blue lights on the rear view.

That was eight years ago. I blew a 0.12, spent the night in jail. My mom screamed at me all summer, Sarah never talked to me again and my graduation gift to myself was probation on an OWI charge.

College plans ruined, and that was only the beginning. I’m 26 now. I live with my mom, who never lets me forget what I did. I’d love to go off and live on my own but I can’t get a decent job to save my life. A friend of my mom’s cousin let me come wash dishes, part time, minimum wage. I’ve had lots of interviews but every time my Class C misdemeanor comes up I can see it in their eyes: I’m toast.

I thought by now Sarah and I would be married with a kid on the way. I was supposed to go to college for computer science, supposed to be working as a programmer in Indianapolis by now. Instead, because of one dumb mistake I’m stuck.

What am I supposed to do?

The above story is a work of fiction, but you might find it familiar. If this character could easily be you, there’s a chance you could get the OWI charge erased from your criminal record. Contact Bruce Munson today to discuss your options for expungement.

It’s time to move on with your life.

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