Another chapter from STOP and SMELL the CRAZY, part 2 RE my arrest for underage drinking.
|“You know, you can go to Ona for this,” Officer Jones said as he parked in the lot beside the Barboursville Volunteer Fire Department on that fateful night that Danny and I got arrested for my underage PURCHASE of alcoholic beverages.
I noticed more cop cars parked on the opposite side of the building and the other DEPUTY FIFES heading our way.
“On the first offense?” I asked Jones, knowing he was referring to Ona Correctional Facility for Wayward Youth…yeah, JUVY with a capital “J”, which, of course, was intended to FRIGHTEN me. But Jonathan F. Smith (my Dad) posed a much bigger threat…in that HE could force a confession to the scary-assed Father Lombardo, or some other UNSPEAKABLE penance for my newest set of sins.
I took a deep breath, stepping out of Jones’s cruiser into the darkness enveloping the dead end street. A rather bulky, Bull-Dog looking cop got out of the front seat, and whirled round to me…“And judges LOVE to make examples of brats like you.”…
“Excuse me, but I didn’t see YOU at Judge Vincent’s barbecue last summer, there STUMP NECK, or Gary Cruickshank’s wedding neither!” Danny squawked.
“What’d you call me?” Bull Dog asked, his chest plumping up like a swollen gland.
“Gary? You mean Mayor Cruickshank?” laughed a deputy, whose badge said OFFICER MELTON…
At which point, I noticed two headlights puncturing the darkness. Mom’s Monte Carlo and my allies had arrived. “So, ya’ll know Marvin Ulysses Cruickshank, as well?” Shauna said sashaying toward us. God LOVE Shauna and her impeccable timing.
A shimmer of surprise in Bull Dog’s eyes reflected my suspicion that the newspapers had never printed the Mayor’s MIDDLE name.
“Is that so -?” Bull Dog stumbled, obviously unsure how to finish that sentence.
“Okay, THAT’S enough. This way,” Jones said grabbing Danny by the elbow and heading for a black sidewalk winding toward the front of the firehouse. “We can all discuss our alleged social calendars INSIDE.”
Danny’s dark eyes were trained on Bull Dog’s bug-eyed stare. Neither one moved or spoke.
“All right?” Jones balked, tugging on Danny’s arm. “Did you hear me, Smith?”
“Yep, crystal clear,” Danny replied through tethered teeth, his gaze never veering from Bull Dog’s hot glare.
“Yes, sir,” Bull Dog snarled.
When…I suddenly felt a twinge of anxiety. It was windowless room kind of dark out here among the endless woods surrounding the firehouse. Perfect place to murder someone and boil their bones or some shit. The HOOT of an owl startled Prissy who was finally toddling along with Shauna. Jones smiled at her, “They won’t bite, you know, the owls.”
Prissy fired an annoyed look at him, then said, “Excuse me, Officer, but what’re we doing HERE?”
“This way,” Jones replied.
Uh, THANKS, but that didn’t ANSWER her question, there EINSTEIN…
A moment later, I relaxed a bit when I saw several FAT firemen through the front window of the firehouse playing cards, drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes beside a huge stone fireplace. Another fireman stoking a red hot blaze.
And then, I saw the TINY wooden sign haphazardly hanging above a black door indicating: BARBOURSVILLE POLICE DEPARTMENT followed by an arrow POINTING UP. Can you say HILLJACK? The sign rocked hard against the winter breeze, while emitting an extremely high-pitched SQUEAK.
We followed Jones up the narrow stairs to what was basically a large garage apartment over the ambulance bays. “Have a seat,” Jones said, gesturing toward a threadbare sofa across from a row of empty desks.
David, Shauna, Prissy and I collapsed into the couch, and Jones sat down and started typing on a manual typewriter. The clacking of the metal keys immediately conjured up the memory of Mrs. Moonfield, my typing teacher from ninth grade. Her horrendously nasal voice spouting, “F, F, F, F, F,” while we typed the same damned letter for an hour. Just throw me in the HOLE, will ya?
I glanced around the less than pristine precinct. The decor was akin to a frat house. Dusty/sagging hardwood floors, overflowing ashtrays, and every wall devoted to posters of girls in bikinis and the like. Yes, including the signature FARRAH in her red one-piece was also in attendance, her now-deceased smile, frozen in time. No wanted posters here…WTF? All that was missing was OTIS and BARNEY… :)
The other coppers settled into metal chairs at the far end of the room. I felt the exhaustion bludgeoning me, an adrenaline crash, so to speak. And I was almost asleep when I heard Prissy say, “Oh, my fucking God,” followed by her customary GASP. My head snapped up, and I looked at Prissy expectantly.
She pointed to Bull Dog and three other cops DRINKING our ROLLING ROCK while jabbering on about the Superbowl. CAN YOU SAY FUCKING PRICKS? How could this be LEGAL? They’re drinking the goddamned evidence!!!
I could see Danny’s jaw tightening, the rage surfacing, “Danny don’t-” I said in a CURT voice.
“You MEAT-HEADS enjoying that fucking beer WE paid for?” Danny sputtered angrily.
“Yeah, matter of fact, I am,” chirped a tall skinny cop wearing a turtleneck under his uniform (I know, right?)…
Jones glanced up from the typewriter and turned to his brothers in blue – hollering, “Hey, don’t touch that other six pack. We need it for court.”
Bull Dog slurped down the rest of HIS beer, grabbed another one from MY SAVE MART BAG, and said, “Don’t worry, boss. It’s in the fridge. We won’t touch it, right boys?” That comment evoked a bawdy round of laughter from the sporto rent-a-cops…
“Blankenship!” Jones barked.
“Okay, okay. We won’t drink it, I swear.” And, then they settled down to sucking down the last of the touchable cerveza.
I slung my arm across Danny’s chest again to keep him from rocketing off the couch and getting in Bull Dog’s face. Then, I leaned over and whispered, “Remember, Danny, he has a gun.”
“Like I fucking care,” Danny blathered loudly, but the cops ignored him. Typical Danny, fearing no one and NOTHING except maybe having to WORK for a living….however, he did something I would NEVER have foreseen. He SHOT up off the couch and rushed toward Jones. I went after him, ready to tackle him if I had to.
“Danny, don’t,” I said as the conversation in the beer galley suddenly halted to a deadly silence.
“Sit your ass down, Smith,” Jones ordered.
Danny held out both his wrists toward Jones. “Ya better cuff me to a goddamned chair, or I’m gonna fuck them up, and get m’beer back, understand? And it ain’t gonna be pretty,” Danny bellowed.
No laughter from the quartet of brawn in blue. Instead, their eyes went uniformly WIDE in anticipation of Danny’s next move. By the suspicious glint in Bull Dog’s eyes, I could tell, he was expecting TROUBLE.
Jones calmly stared at Danny. Man, JONES was TOTALLY becoming a candidate for the seat next to me in my lifeboat. His composure was straight out of John Wayne’s bible…
Finally, Jones took a pair of handcuffs out of his desk, and he latched Danny’s right hand to the arm of a wooden chair next to his desk. Danny sat down without a word.
At that moment, I totally understood the corruption of rural municipalities. I never thought about the logistics of misplaced EVIDENCE until I saw it disappearing into Bull Dog Cop’s gullet that night.
No boring fare in a history book. This was real time sleaze in ALL its glory in one of many shitty, one stoplight villages …and I’ll bet these fine, upstanding regulators would’ve been the FIRST to stand in line to collect their hooch before casting their votes on ELECTION DAY back in the days of yore…
And there you have it….once upon a time in a place where the BOYS never become MEN, and the SHEEP sleep with ONE eye open…
So, what happened AFTER our arrest? How did my parents react? Well, it was like this…*
wait for it…..
wait for it….
The Ode to Barboursville and the days of yore…
(to be continued)…
THE CONTINUATION can also be found at: http://tenaciousbitch.wordpress.com...i.e., my blogging website, written under the name: tenaciousBITCH/Kennedy Smith...or you can wait until I post the remaining story HERE regarding going to COURT after my skirmish w/the Barboursville Po Po...but for now...I must go...