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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

4 Days and a Second Ticket

This afternoon as we were making our way home, the cop who usually sits, bored senseless at the corner of my street watches us pass by onto the main drag where we pull up behind yet another officer in a marked SUV. All of a sudden we see lights in our rearview mirror, then the SUV in front of us lights up. We pull over next to the laundromat parking lot where the cruiser pulls up behind us and the SUV pulls into the parking lot next to us. I look down long enough to put my seatbelt on (I know, "at all times" means at all times...), and when I look up again... BAM... there's a cop face in both windows, each of them grilling us at the same time about seat belts, inspections, exhausts, and front license plates.

The cop in the cruiser makes us wait an eternity while he runs licenses and such. My other half is fuming, yet again when suddenly a third cruiser drives by, lights up, and throws on his siren. The cop in the SUV hauls ass to his car and hops in, Super Troopers style and speeds off, and finally the officer in the cruiser runs to our window, throws the ticket at my boyfriend, mumbles something about driving safe, and blows by us.

The only thing I can manage to get out is, "Where the hell were all these guys Friday night when we needed them?"

We drive a couple blocks farther up my street to see all three cruisers in front of the local funeral home. And what praytell did Winchendon's finest rush off to do? Stop three small children from fighting over a bike. Thank God. I've never felt so safe in my life!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

5 Days and Counting!!!

I have 5 more days left in this white trash cow town hell and after this past Friday night, I'm glad of it!

Driving back from Western Mass after a concert, this yahoo in a BMW gets right on our tail. And I mean right on our tail. He was so close that when I turned around all I could see was hood. I'm pretty sure he could smell my perfume from where he was. The guy starts weaving from side to side, getting ever closer to the car when my other half locks up the brakes and the BMW slides to the left, nearly making contact with our back bumper. Then this clown decides to try to pass us in the breakdown lane while moving towards the side of our car, basically trying to shove us into oncoming traffic. 

Once our exit comes up, my other half hits the gas, full tilt around the exit that is basically a U-turn and pins it. We're going at least 80 on a residential road and somehow the BMW is still with us. At this point, I'm freaking out because this guy is obviously following us and manages to land on our bumper once again the moment we have to slow down for traffic.

My bright idea? Well, I'll call the state police! They'll help! So I dutifully dial 911 and speak to a trooper, telling him what route we're on and what mile marker we just passed. The trooper informs me that he is going to transfer us to the local police for my town so that they can intercept this genius who has now just tried to shove us off the road for a second time. I wait for the call to transfer and speak to the dispatch officer in my town. I tell him where I am and he starts to "hmm" and "umm".

"Well, you're technically in the village of Baldwinville. You would be better calling the Templeton police."

So I figure, ok fine. I'll call Templeton. I call the state police back and I say that the Winchendon police have told me I should talk to the Templeton police. But by this time I realize we have crossed the town line into Winchendon and ask for the Winchendon police again. I explain that this punk in the BMW is still following us, still riding our ass, and now has his high beams on while flashing a bright blue flashlight at us from inside his car.

What do the fine, brave enforcers of our town's laws tell us to do? "Pull into the police station. You'll be safe there."

At that point I hand the phone to my already fuming driver. He starts asking this brilliant dispatcher what on earth this solution could possibly do for us in light of the fact that the BMW has now tried to KILL US TWICE. For this, the cop has no answer except to say that all the officers on duty are currently "out on a fight". This incenses him further and he starts to swear at the police officer (not such a good idea by the way) and asks him if he's retarded (another not so great idea). The officer tells him the only way he can help us is if we can get the license plate number on the BMW. 

Fine. So this car is obviously following us and there's no way we're pulling into our driveway and letting this jackass know where we live so we pull into the gas station on the corner of my street and get out, trying to see what the car's license plate is. Unfortunately neither of us can see it and my other half is back on the phone with the police, letting them know that the car has now turned onto my street with us and wants to know if they can send a cruiser for "when this kid gets his ass kicked".

The dispatcher continues to tell us there's nothing they can do for us unless we have the license plate so we hop back into the car and speed down our street to catch up to the BMW which has since turned into the parking lot of the local school. We creep around the school building, James Bond style, and watch this kid get out of his car. With about 3 of his friends. Being that we're outnumbered, we decide to try the police yet one more time. 

For the final time, the police suggest that we try to get the license plate number.

Dispatcher: Sir, can you get close enough to the car to see the license plate?

BF: Um, they're parked in a deserted parking lot with like 4 of them and 2 of us. You want me to roll up on them and get their license plate? What the hell kind of police academy did you graduate from?

Dispatcher: Sir, we can send a cruiser out in about 15 minutes if you can stay there and box him in.

BF: You want me to sit here all night, parked across the exit until you d*ckheads can send a car? Because we're not going home so this kid can come to my house and f*ck up my car. I should have locked up my brakes in front of the police station and let the kid hit me right there."

Long story short, the cops did zero. So what did we do? Stormed into the police station ready to do battle. While my other half wound up, getting ready to rip the dispatcher apart, I stepped in front of him and did my best Linda Blair impression, pounding on the counter, spit flying everywhere while I loudly informed him that we would be camping out in the station until he got off his ass and checked out this kid's car.

After sitting in the station, listening to the kid who caused the fight that took the entire police force to break up yell and cry like a 4 year old girl in lockup for 45 minutes, the dispatcher finally hopped in a cruiser to check out our complaint. He comes back after 10 minutes, laughing and shaking his head. Immediately we know that this is not going to end the way we hoped.

Dispatcher: Yeah. So I know this kid and um, he said he was out getting rims for his car. He even showed me the rims (BF: I don't give a f*ck if he showed you the rims a$$hole.). So it was just a coincidence he was following you. And uh, he says you were the one driving like an A-hole (his word, not mine). But I know this kid, I'm going to court with him on Monday and he's going to lose his license anyway because he drives like an idiot. So yeah."

Great. Of course he knows the kid. And of course the fact that the kid tried to KILL US makes no difference because he showed this yokel his RIMS THAT HE BOUGHT! I'm pissed but I can see that my other half is ready to boil over. We get in the car and there is steam pouring out of his ears as he jams the car in gear, backs out of his parking space next to a cruiser, and...

Peels out in front of the police station.

We don't make it more than 100 feet before we see blue lights behind us. They can't send a cruiser out to catch the kid who damned near caused our deaths but they sure as hell can jump in their car pretty damned fast to give us a $200 TICKET!!!!! 

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Mass Health

The notion of free health care for those of us who are say, unexpectedly unemployed, those of us who find ourselves fallen on hard times, is one that I can staunchly and wholeheartedly support as well as appreciate. However, it must be nice to get free health care on the state's dime and still be able to afford your Dolce and Gabbana (definitely real) sunglasses.

I went down to the city office of Mass Health with my other half today to keep him company while he waited to file for health benefits as we are now both out of work. He's a mechanic and right now, with people selling their cars or simply taking them off the road, he's generally screwed. However, he still needs to have regular health care. So we sat in that office for about 45 minutes while I marvelled at the individuals coming in for benefits.

The first woman to come in after us was a very thin blond woman. I'm fairly certain she was caucasian though it was difficult to tell behind all the jail house tattoos. She was complaining loudly to the receptionist that her benefits had been interrupted due to her recent incarceration and she was wondering if she could get them restored as soon as possible.

The next to come in was an overweight African American man who also informed the receptionist that he had lost benefits while serving time in the local maximum security facility. It seems the facility, upon his release, sent him to Mass Health with forms that would allow him to receive emergency benefits. Why? Because he's overweight and diabetic and therefore needs insulin.

Mixed in amongst these individuals were women who looked like they couldn't be much older than 25 asking if they could add their 15 year old daughter to their free health care plan. There were young men talking to their "boys" on cell phones that cost more than my rent payment. There were 12 year old girls also talking to their friends on their cell phones (Why does a 12 year old need a cell phone again?) about how they were going to leave the Mass Health office in a few minutes to go buy a new pair of $125 sneakers.

Every single one of these individuals was asked to produce a paystub to prove that they were making a salary that placed them below the poverty line, which is a requirement to receive the free health care. What did most of these high rollers with nicer wardrobes than mine answer? "Oh. I ain't workin' there no more. I ain't workin' at all."

And I felt guilty filing for unemployment.....

Monday, July 20, 2009

Good to be back!

Well thank you for the hearty welcome back Mom!

And Phoenix, not only have I witnessed that particular breed of "rink mom" but I used to be one of those kids out on the ice thanking God that my mother was outside smoking a cigarette instead of inside the rink. The only skating advice she ever gave me was, "Fall on your ass. At least that part of your anatomy never swells."

I competed for the final time in my career when I was 18 years old and while other kids' parents were browbeating them for coming in 3rd, my father's response to me after seeing my standings posted was, "Well, technically you didn't come in dead last. There was that girl who dropped out..."

Being a teacher I will never understand why some adults react to children the way they do. Telling your child or student that he or she is a failure certainly does not, in my opinion, constitute a good use of your adult wisdom. Even if that child is in the corner talking to sock puppets at the age of 16 or wildly trying to pound a very square plastic peg into the very round ear of a classmate, you never tell that child that he or she will be a failure. Hey, my dad ate paste until he was 7 and he turned out pretty damned good. No one ever told him he was a loser for snarfing up the kindergarten adhesive like it was frosting on a cupcake. Sometimes you just have to remember that kids are kids- not miniature adults.

On that note, I'm off to be artsy out on my porch because I'm tired of packing my giant amounts of crap.

You should be required to pass an IQ test to be a parent...

I know, I know... I disappeared yet again. I took a brief hiatus but I'm back and better than ever. Well, not really but at least I'm back.

And my pearl of wisdom for you today is that I found something more horrifying than pageant moms. MOTOCROSS MOMS! I went up to Crow Hill Motocross track today to shoot a friend who was racing and in between the motos he raced in I got to witness the little tykes racing their tiny screaming motocross bikes while their large screaming mothers stood on the sidelines, shouting at them to quit being losers and step on it! Half these kids can't be more than 6 years old and as they're riding their bikes back to their trailers, fathers are barking at them to kick some more ass in the next race.

Now, call me crazy, but I don't think calling your kid a loser is such a great motivator. Although since I don't yet have kids, I suppose I'm not one to judge. However, once my kids pick up motocross after watching their uncles race, I'll be on the sidelines trying not to slap the shit out of those other mothers!