Have You Ever Called The Police?

BC Mountie

In the wake of the George Floyd, Black Man Death By Minnesota Cop fiasco, MSN’s daily poll asked
Have you ever called the police?

Usually, they show up just when you don’t want them.  When it happens to someone else, we revel in the schadenfreude.  I was recently held up at a major intersection by a driver who – finally – made an illegal left turn…. right in front of a cop car.

The only time I ever called the police was the night that I was a little late for my Security Guard shift at a downtown hotel.  I was allowed to park free in the hotel’s parking garage, and keeping an eye on its contents was part of my job.

Around 2 AM, I noticed a teenage boy wandering among the cars, and went out to accost him.  He quickly disappeared.  I went to my car to get my lunch and found that, in my haste, I was the only one who forgot to lock my car.  In a garage full of a hundred Cadillacs, BMWs, and Mercedes, he got into my little Volkswagen and lifted a cheap backpack, a towel, my lunch, two pocket books and a bag of hard candies.

With no hope of getting them back, I called the station to give a description and incident report.  Two hours later, a him-and-her cruiser team showed up to take a statement, and I was offered a beer from a six-pack they had on the front floor with them.

How comfortable do you feel when in the presence of police officers?
Very comfortable
Somewhat comfortable
Somewhat uncomfortable
Very uncomfortable
I don’t know

Somewhere between Somewhat, and Very Comfortable.  I begin with ‘White Man’s Privilege’.  I am far less likely to have a bad interaction, than members of many other groups.  I have been exposed to members of police forces at various levels, all my life.  I have seen them perform stupid, questionable, dangerous, and illegal acts (see six-pack, above).  I am not impressed.  They put on their egotistic persona one leg at a time, the same as I do.

My own self-confidence borders on arrogance, but that is a fine line that should not be crossed.  Police forces, and most individual officers – including the females – run on testosterone.  They like to feel that they are the alpha, but are realistic enough to accept that there are those above and outside them.  I can dismiss or discount them, but I’d better not disrespect.

It is best to sternly treat them as a schoolmarm would deal with a ten-year-old bully.  EVERYTHING is illegal.  If they think that they have been insulted, they have ways to make even an innocent man guilty.

When I worked as a Security Guard, I was accepted as one of the pack – a wolf cub – but one of them, someone in a uniform, trying to keep order.  Police don’t necessarily want to enforce the law.  They just want social peace and quiet.

Have you ever been stopped by the police?
Yes
No
I don’t know

I would be interested to meet the hermit who has never been stopped by the police, at least once in their life.  Just before I turned 13, a group of us yobs were returning from the beach bowling alley, down at the south edge of town, after it closed at 1 AM on a warm August night.  A half-block from the main street, there was a lane – an alley – which ran behind the stores, for deliveries.  The group had come to a stop while we discussed something.  I noticed headlights coming up the street behind us.  They got brighter, but they didn’t pass.

I turned, to see the local police cruiser nestling up to the group.  I threw a startled look, and took off running full-tilt up the alley.  Wellll….  Barney lit ‘em up – lights and siren, in hot pursuit.  If I had wanted to ‘escape,’ there were walkways.  I gave him room on one side and continued up the lane.  The cruiser screamed past, he cut me off…. and I calmly walked over to the car.

He tumbled out, and immediately demanded;
Why did you run??!
Because I can.
Where are you coming from?
The bowling alley.
What were you doing?
I just stared at him – fast food, girls, entertainment, swimming.
Well, why did you run??!
Exercise?  Youthful exuberance?
Where are you going?
Home.
Well, you make sure that you go straight home, (which he can’t legally demand) and don’t let me catch you (doing what?) again!

I have been waved over into several RIDE Program checkpoints, both in a car, and on my motorcycle, during the Oktoberfest drunken craziness week.
I was stopped while driving the daughter back from a dog breeder, because she was cuddling her adopted puppy on her chest/shoulder.  The patrolman marched up to the car, realized that she was holding a dog, and waved us on.  If you’re in an accident, it’s acceptable to kill a pet – but children must be restrained in approved car seats.  My Weekend Weak-End

I was stopped at 1:30 AM – in August – for going too fast in a school zone.  He was right, but he was also bored, and wanted to flex his legal muscle.  I didn’t get a speeding ticket, but a $30 fine for not having the most recent proof of insurance in the car.

I was stopped, driving three co-workers home after a 4PM to 1:30 AM shift at a railway warehouse on the edge of town.  We just reached the end of the driveway, when a cruiser went past to the right.  I turned left – in-town – but soon had flashing lights behind me.
What are you guys doing?
Going home after work at XXX Transport.
I didn’t know anybody worked out here on Saturday.
(Then you don’t know your patrol area well)
But officer, this is the end of a Friday night shift.
Oh…. yeah.  Okay, away you go.

The site manager, and the shipper, both drove past while we were detained, after stopping to lock the gate, and wanted to know what and why on Monday.

I am bewildered by the existence of an “I Don’t Know” option at the end of the second and third questions.  If you’ve been pulled over, or had to call the police, wouldn’t you know??  Wouldn’t it be exciting enough to be memorable??!

Martha, that time we had a home invasion, and those three guys with guns broke into the house, what did we do?  Did we go on the Dr. Phil Show?   🙄

’20 A To Z Challenge – G

Ham

I recently took a linguistic tour of names, from South America, to Mexico, and parts of Europe.   It was all virtual – in a book, and online.  In real life, I’m barely allowed out the front door by myself.

The hero of the book fled a refuge in the headwaters of the Amazon, high up in the Andes, where Brazil, Peru, Colombia, and Venezuela all bump together.  Reaching Mexico, he found that a friend had been killed.  He discovered that a U.S. Navy Seal, who he had thought was an American named Eddie Gamble, had actually been a Mexican named Eduardo Gamboa.

Gamboa’, as a Spanish name is not common, and I thought at first that it was really Portuguese, through Brazil, so I started looking.  Maybe because Portugal is on the other side of the Pyrenees mountains from Spain, the language developed different.  They spell words and names like this, the other way.  Their version is Gambao.

It was at this point that my ever-reliable…. uh….memory – that’s it!  Memory, reminded me that, when I am playing my free online game of Solitaire, I am often cajoled to BUY the game Gambino Slots.  Gambino??!  Dear Lord – the Italian mob owns my computer games.

Too lazy to think, I began running them through a couple of translation programs.  The problem is that, because they are proper names, the computer just gives back the same spelling in either language.  Just as I clicked the button to switch from Spanish to Portuguese, for a fraction of a second, the word ‘stem’ appeared.  😳  Duh, FACEPALM!

facepalm-cat

Now, I knew where I was going.  Not stem, but LEG!  I fearlessly ventured on into French.  There, the equivalent name is Cambe, a spelling variation of the word jambe – a leg.  An uncommon English version is Camby.  The French word for ham – a pig’s leg – is jambon.

This even explained the old gangster word referring to a good-looking woman’s legs.  Back during WWII, Betty Grable, and others, had ‘great gams.’

Betty Grable

 

I would like to claim that I came up with a great idea for the letter G, in this A to Z Challenge, but I wouldn’t have a leg to stand on.  It was the daughter who suggested this.  You keep coming around to read, and I’ll keep pumping out this dreck interesting trivia.

WOW #60

Weeping

I am greatly saddened that I will sadden you.  I weep, that you will weep, when I introduce the triplets of unhappiness.

ELEGY – THRENODY – MONODY

Elegy – a mournful, melancholy, or plaintive poem, especially a funeral song or a lament for the dead.
a sad or mournful musical composition.

Threnody – a poem, speech, or song of lamentation, especially for the dead; dirge; funeral song.

Monody – a Greek ode sung by a single voice, as in a tragedy; lament.
a poem in which the poet or speaker laments another’s death; a threnody.
Pretty much just a solo of threnody

The optimist thinks that we live in the best of times. 
The pessimist fears that that is true. 

In these days of COVID 19, it is easy to believe that we have things rough, but society, and life in general, must be improving, if we no longer have these three words around to use regularly.  I hope that none of my readers have lost anyone close to them.

There will always be doomsayers, and wet blankets, who can knit a grey cloud from a silver lining, with much weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth.  I prefer to always look on the bright side, even if people think that I’m none too bright for doing so.  I feel it’s a good idea to laugh at being sad.  To prove it, here’s some of the old gang from Hee-Haw to show you how.  https://youtu.be/BkzE23pyME4

**It Has Hit The Fan

Pride Flag

The Waterloo District Catholic School Board refused to fly the rainbow Pride flag at their schools during June, LGBTQ+ MonthHo-Hum, same-old – same-old.  There are 37 area Catholic boards in Ontario, and only one of them, the Sudbury one, did so.

Last year’s chairman of the board – a very capable administrator – resigned from the board when his term ended, because he could not stand to work with these narrow-minded bigots.  The most outspoken – a man – thundered that he would not allow the Pride flag to be flown, because Pride is the greatest sin in the Bible!

There are 7 Deadly Sins listed in the Bible, none of them marked as more serious than any other.  The resigned resigner publicly pointed out that the “Biblical” sin of pride is the rejection of the power and wisdom of God, and believing that one is as smart and strong as Him.  It has nothing to do with LGBTQ+ gay Pride.  Either the intolerant bigot is intentionally lying, or, he does not know/understand the basic positions of his religion.

manure

If this was all that (didn’t) happened, it wouldn’t even be news.  It would just be Catholic ‘Business As Usual,’ but the board really put their foot in it.  While they wouldn’t fly the rainbow Gay Pride flag – against the recommendations of the Catholic School Teachers Federation and several student organizations, they designed their own “Pride Flag,” and summarily announced that it would fly during June.

Catholic pride-flag

The local media reported on this, and suddenly it went viral and global.  The local newspaper went from days when there were no Op-Ed letters, to 6 and 7 a day about this for a week, on both sides.  Letters with captions like
Alternative Pride flag a creative attempt to embrace inclusivity
No, it’s not, and I’ll explain why, below.
Catholic trustee should be able to speak his mind
Yes he should.  No-one suggested that he couldn’t, but the rest of us should be free to point and call him a bigot.
Don’t criticize Catholics for not flying Pride flag
Why not??!  Are they being loving and inclusive?
The rainbow Pride flag should not fly at schools
Perhaps not, but that’s the smaller side of this controversy.
Dissenters are bullied in discussion of Pride flag
Told that they are arrogant assholes, suddenly ‘Good Christians’ are being bullied.  😥
Rainbow flag celebrates freedom from persecution
And yet, the Board still wants to play “My Way Or The Highway.”
Clearing up controversy by properly defining “Pride”
His definition, almost word-for-word, echoes that of the ex-chairman, explaining the mistake, and yet he still wants to fly the board’s alternative flag.  The only positive to his letter is that, at least he’s not a hypocrite.  He is intolerant, prejudiced, dogmatic, and proud of it.

A number of the Catholic commenters wanted to support intolerant Church tenets, yet not appear too judgmental and small-minded themselves.  There were many references to ‘loving, acceptant, and inclusive, about the use of the Catholic flag version, but these words only relate when they apply to others, as they are, and under the symbol that they have chosen for themselves.  It is not ‘loving, acceptant, and inclusive,’ if it is only done under your rules and restrictions.

This sad fiasco has not really been about LGBTQ+, or gay rights, or the rainbow flag, or its distressing replacement.  It has been a power struggle, about militant Catholicism and control, in which EVERYBODY lost, but the Church lost most of all.  Because of the public scrutiny and controversy, the Catholic Board decided that no flag would fly, including their own design.  I wait to see next year, if it gets unfurled again.  😛  🙄

***

The mayor of the township which abuts our cities’ western edge, also refused to allow the rainbow Pride flag to be flown from any Township building.  His ‘justification’ was that, no two lesbians can produce children, and no two homosexuals can produce children, therefore, ‘If we encourage this sort of thing, this will be the last generation of humans on Earth.’

What disturbs me, as often and as much as the bigoted intolerance and misrepresentation, is the (often intentional) ignorance [lack of easily gained knowledge] and stupidity [misinterpretation of easily understood facts.]

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