the dark side
Beer Run
I get called to the hospital, St. Vincent’s Emergency Room. Always a winner of a call. Usually it's picking up a woman to take her to the battered women’s shelter, or a drunk to the homeless shelter. One of my favorites was a 58 year old man with his leg broken in two places. "What Happened?" "Well it involved beer and skateboards". But tonight it is a soldier, going to the national guard armory. The Police put him in my cab and tell me where to take him. As we leave he starts cursing the Police. "What happened?" "Well, I got kicked out of Cheeks (the only strip bar in town) for touching the dancer. They called the cops and the cops beat me up." This guy did look pretty beat up, but he probably fell on his face, or resisted arrest. "Then after they beat me up they took me to the hospital, how do you like that!" This guy was really sketchy so I asked for $50.00 up front and he handed it right over, cool, I'm covered. He asks if he can stop at the Giant for some cigarettes "sure" why not? He goes in and comes out a minute later with a 36 pack of Bud Light. Hmmm, I wonder how he got the cashier to sell him beer at 1:00 am. Take out alcohol sales end at midnight in New Mexico. Oh well, obviously he convinced the cashier, I will take him home to the base. As we are driving out to the base my dispatcher comes on the radio. "Are you loaded?", "Yes", "Where are you going to clear?", "The National Guard Armory", "Did I just see you leaving the Giant?" "Ya, that was me.", "Cool, call me when you clear." When we got to the Armory, the guy got out at the gate, I said "Hey, don't forget your beer." He said he couldn't bring it on the base and I could keep it. The guard at the gate put him down on the ground and handcuffed him, and made him sit on the curb. I called my dispatcher and he said that the guy had stolen the beer from the Giant and the cops were right behind me. Sure enough a few minutes later they pulled up, took the guy to jail and took the beer back to the Giant, it was unopened. That guy was on a self destructive rant, I wonder if he thought he was going to get out of the armed forces that way, or what. A friend said if he made it into the base he would be in the Brig for a long time, and the Brig is a whole lot worse than jail. The next day I got a call from my manager to come in early to work, he needed to talk to me. Oh dear, I'm in trouble. So he says, "I heard from the police about your call to the National Guard Armory last night." So I told him what happened. " Was the meter running when he robbed the Giant?" "Yes, of coarse it was". "OK, as long as the meter was running, that is a service we provide."