Saturday dawned hot and humid ... a typical sultry day in July. I parked, got out of my car and made my way to Kellogg Park ... clutching my traffic violation warrant in my right hand. 

Up ahead a queue was forming. Other violators like myself, all young women, were presenting themselves at the park entrance gate to serve out their sentences for various traffic miscues committed over the past couple of months.

Earlier that week I had gone to traffic court, having received a ticket for mistakenly driving the wrong way down a one-way street. It was my first offense and I was reasonably confident that I would get off easy. Perhaps just a small fine. But just to make sure, I took a friend's advice and wore my shortest skirt and heels. I was told the judge was a sucker for bare legs.

When it was my turn, I got up off the chair where I had been waiting, crossing and uncrossing my legs every time the judge looked my way, and strode casually up to the bench, taking care to swing my hips a little more than usual. The judge leaned forward and looked me over through half-lensed spectacles. A deep frown spread across his bewhiskered face.

"Ms. Moore? Barbara Moore?" he inquired, checking and rechecking the documents clutched in his hands.

"Yessir, that's me."

"Ummmmm ... let's see ... what was the violation?... here it is ... wrong way on a one-way ... is that correct, Ms. Moore?"

"Well, you see your honor, I am new in town and I got lost and didn't see the signs with the arrow," I explained, extending my right leg forward a bit and bending my knee provocatively.

"No excuse, Ms. Moore. Signs are signs. So, is this your first offense, right?"

"Yesssir!" I chirped brightly, anticipating sympathy and leniency. He kept looking at my legs, after all.

"Sentenced to six hours in Kellogg Park, Saturday next! Next case!" he muttered, banging his gavel.

I didn't budge.

"Move on, Ms. Moore."

"Wait a minute! That was my first offense! Don't you think six hours is a bit harsh? And, by the way, six hours of what?"

"Ms. Moore. Since the city instituted the new 'public shame sentence program' in Kellogg Park, traffic violations have been down 40%, especially among young women. Six hours is what you get. I can assure you that six hours will do wonders for that attitude! Now move on, and don't be late on Saturday! Reporting time is 9 AM."