If you're going to circumvent HOV-lane rules, go interesting or go home. That was apparently the goal of one driver in Fife, Wash., who was pulled over by a trooper Monday afternoon after the officer noticed the guy's passenger seemed a little stiff, KOMO reports. "The trooper immediately recognized it was a prop and not a passenger," fellow trooper Guy Gill tells the New York Daily News. "As the trooper approached, the driver was actually laughing." That's because the serenely smug-looking passenger was a cardboard cutout of "The Most Interesting Man in the World," the Dos Equis mascot portrayed by actor Jonathan Goldsmith.
"He's my best friend," the driver reportedly told the trooper, per the Daily News. "He just sits here and doesn't talk." Gill says his team has seen unusual HOV passengers before (sleeping bags seem to be popular, per KOMO), but he advises the Daily News that the driver "could have picked a less recognizable face to put on his prop." For his violation, the driver got a $124 fine and a warning not to transport Mr. Goldsmith (whom he got to keep) around anymore, but it's clear Gill and his colleagues probably had a good laugh about it afterward: After the incident he tweeted a photo of the two partners in petty crime and some reluctant praise: "I don't always violate the HOV lane law...but when I do, I get a $124 ticket! We'll give him an A for creativity!" (Sometimes HOV-lane stops can even lead to kidnapping victims.)