Pull Down Thy Vanity

posted by Alan Greenblatt Back in his days as a stand-up comedian, Woody Allen had a routine about how he'd learned to type. He simply ...
by | May 24, 2006

posted by Alan Greenblatt

Vanity_2 Back in his days as a stand-up comedian, Woody Allen had a routine about how he'd learned to type. He simply memorized the typewriter. The top line, he said, was "kwerty-you-ee-op," the middle "as-duh-fug-a-jeckyl," and the bottom "zux-fub-num."

That's about how people approach license plates, I think. You see an accident or an aggressive driver and quickly try to write down unmemorable clusters like ZRP 432 or HFI 771.

But in Chicago, police were able to nab a man who allegedly hit and killed a 4-year-old girl and then fled the scene. As the Sun-Times reports, the man's distinctive "OCEAN21" license plate caught the eye of a witness.

Admittedly, the thought of nine more "Ocean's 11" sequels is pretty horrifying. The obvious moral of the story, though, is to avoid vanity plates (fifth item) if you want to get away with murder.

p.s. A free issue of Governing to anyone who can name the poet who provided me with the headline. No Googling, please.