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I drank and drove so many times in high school and college that I’m amazed I never got into serious trouble. I remember one night, I was 18, I was driving to a party with a friend. We had two cases of beer in the backseat that we had just bought from a grocery store that sold to minors and were passing a joint back and forth. The windows were down, music was blasting from the stereo, and we were singing along at the top or our lungs. Eventually we tossed the end of the joint out of the window and that’s when I saw the lights flashing in the rearview mirror; I was getting pulled over by a cop. My friend and I were both stoned and drunk so, naturally, we were freaking out but I pulled over, shut off the engine, and managed to remain calm. The cop came over to the driver’s side and asked for my license and registration, which I handed over. He asked where we were going and we said to a party. He asked what we had thrown out of the window and we said a cigarette. Then he looked in the backseat and saw the cases of beer and instead of administering a breathalyzer or drunk driving test he told us to open each can and pour out every beer, which we did right there on the side of the road. Then he said that he was only giving us a verbal warning and that we should go home right away instead of to the party, which, of course, we didn’t do. I think about that night often, about how lucky we were, and I wonder how much our privilege had to do with his letting us off the hook.