Memoirs of the Local Police
Bumper to Bumper
One summer morning on the way to work via one of Ontario's busiest highways I was stuck in traffic and barely moving. With a fresh large cup of hot tea in one hand, I was leaning over to tune the radio with the other in stop and go traffic. As I was in the middle of a "go" and not paying attention, I bumped the vehicle in front of me. We both pulled over to the shoulder, an older couple exited their vehicle and we all began inspecting the vehicles for damage. I apologized to the couple for my incompetence and they didn't make a big deal out of it. The two vehicles were old and there was no damage to either - it was just a minor incident from both our views. Just as we decided to get on our way to our destinations, another vehicle was backing up ahead of our vehicles and stopped in front of the older couple's car.
An OPP Officer driving an unmarked car enters the scenario. He must have witnessed the collision in one of the other lanes. He approaches us and immediately asked the couple if they were ok, and they responded with positive news.
Then... He looks over at me and raises his voice and starts grilling me in front of this couple. He made comments like "What the hell is the matter with you - driving so carelessly?" and "Are you trying to get somebody killed?"
Stunned, I replied with an equally high voice, "What, you think I did this on purpose? Look around we were barley moving!" We started arguing for a few seconds and I did not let up - he made a big deal out of nothing. He told me to shut up and get into my car until he was ready for me.
He took a statement from the other driver first - and before he drove away, he even looked at me and was shaking his head. I then entered the police car and while the officer wrote me up a ticket for driving to close, he started telling me how much of a smart mouth I was for challenging him and not taking the crap he was dishing out to me for, again, no good reason. Needless to say, I continued my vocal opinion on him just the same even after he told me to shut up again.
A Late Cold Night
Driving home late one night after having a few drinks at a friends place which was about five minutes away on one of the coldest days of the year, I was stopped by a Peel Regional Police Officer. It was about 2:00AM and on such a cold night, it took that vehicle about 15 minutes to heat up and start blowing hot air through the vents (I wasn't gooing to wait 15 minutes to drive 5, so I made my way home after a minute or so when the motor sounded smooth).
The Officer pulled me over and asked me for my ID and other vehicle papers, which I turned over. He told me I was pulled over for not wearing my seatbelt and then told me to shut off the car. I didn't argue... it was late.
I had a 1x3 inch neon clock in the car that stays on permanently. As soon as the officer walked back to his cruiser, I noted the time. We'll say it was 2:05AM (as i can't remember the exact time - it was so long ago). I sat there in super sub-low temperatures for 10 minutes straight. I was getting pissed off and decided that this guy is going to hear from me if I didn't hear from him by the time my clock turned to 2:20. Sure enough, as soon as the clock turned to 2:20, I rolled down my window and yelled at the top of my lungs "WOULD YOU HURRY UP AND GET YOUR &$%@*% ASS OVER HERE YOU $#%#@&%# ASS$#@&!!!"
Not another 30 seconds went by when he came up and knocked on my window. I rolled it down and he raised voice to me asking "What did you say to me?" and again I got the most out of my lungs one more time and responed "WHO THE F$#K DO YOU THINK YOU ARE YOU LOW LIFE PIECE OF SHIT, PULLING PEOPLE OVER IN THE FREEZING COLD AND ORDERING THEM TO SHUT THERE ENGINES OFF SO THEY CAN GET A LITTLE FROST BITTEN! WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE, HUH? LET ME TELL YOU, YOU ARE A F#@$ING ASS$@, THAT'S WHO YOU ARE!!! He backed right off of me the second I responded to his question. When I was done saying those sweet words, I ripped the ticket out of his stunned hands, started my car and drove off. What can you do?
One day on the job making deliveries in a company truck, a police cruiser came out of nowhere and pulled up beside me matching my speed. I looked over and there began a hand motioning conversation.
I looked at the police officer and he looked at me. He grabbed his seatbelt and stretched it out towards his steering wheel. I looked down to see that I wasn't wearing mine, so I then put it on. When I was done, I looked back at the police officer and he was giving me new signs. With his hand in front of his face in almost a clenched fist with his index finger protruding out and pointing at his speedometer gauge, he began moving it back and forth a few times. I looked at my speedometer and noted the speed. I was about 15-20 clicks over the limit. I eased off the pedal to the allowable speed limit. I looked back at the police officer and yet again, he was giving me a new sign. I can't exactly remember what it was he getting on my case for this time, but I reacted by letting air out of my mouth and a little eye roll. I looked at him again and his index finger was motioning me to pull over. I did.
As I sat in the car waiting for him, I looked in the mirror and observed the "young" police officer. It had to be his first day in the squad car by himself. I had observed him putting on his police hat while looking in his rear view mirror to make sure it was on straight and that he looked good. He did this for about 5 seconds or so as I recall and I just thought to myself - "Oh No!"
Sure enough he wound up lecturing me on the law and it went on for a few minutes. I didn't respond much, I just sucked it up. What could I do?
The Local BC Pub
After leaving Ontario and moving out west for seven years, there was a number of RCMP officers I had unintentionally interacted with. The one I remember the most was in a local pub in Port Coquitlam. Sitting at the bar on a busy night and along comes a very pretty looking brunette. We chatted for awhile and she seemed very friendly and the moment finally came when I asked her what she did for a living. Her answer: I'm a Police Officer! My Response was one that she expected: Oh! (with a stunned look)
She started getting on my case...
Pretty Police Officer: Oh so now everything changes right?
Well what the hell was I supposed to say? ...I just decided to tell here "exactly" what was on my mind.
Me: Ya know what? I'll tell you honestly (and I was speaking sincerely) that I have met quite a few police officers over the years and I must say that more than half of our police force in this country is loaded with crooked f$@#ing ass$#%& that don't deserve any respect.
Amazingly, her reply took me by surprise.
Pretty Police Officer: Your right. I can't argue with you on that because it's a fact.
Even though we chatted for awhile I still felt uncomfortable about the situation. There is some hope knowing that there are police officers out there that see the failures with their own organization. It may be a good idea to start singling out such police officers by approaching them and creating some dialog. It won't be long before you know whose side they're on. If they are on your side, make friends with them.