Monday, October 26, 2009

Excuse me, Officer?

So here is one of those times when my terribly hot headed over opinionated very verbal mouth could possibly have gotten me into oodles of trouble - and still may.

This weekend I was in my front yard doing hedge work and the non-sick child was out front with me playing on his scooter or bike or big wheel or skate board or what ever had caught his fancy that current 15 second period. I start to hear sirens going off around the neighborhood, so I know something exciting must be happening and police are in hot persuit. That is when a marked police car comes flying down the street- sirens blaring - and races past our house.

Now let me give you a little history here. My street is a main entrance into a large neighborhood. Because of this, many people treat it like the main lanes of a cross country freeway. They come racing through and pay no regard to silly things like, oh I don't know - speed limits. Some have even blown past my son's bus even though the blaring blinking red lights and stop signs might have given a clue for them to stop. Un-marked police officers often sit in front of my house to help curb this issue. My point is - when I see a cop doing the same thing as the regular idiots in the neighborhood, I get PISSED.

So.... this is me.... and what does Mama Beck do? She calls - she calls her lovely local police department's non emergency hot line with a concern. Did you read that? Yes...I said concern - not complaint - concern. The receptionist takes my info, listen's to my brief concern and says someone will call me back. Thank you.

Ring Ring - Private number

Hello this is Rebecca

Hello Ma'm this is Seargent (so and so) with the (blah blah blah) police dept, how can I help you?

(terribly sweet cooperative tone) Thank you for calling me back - I first want to say that I have lived in this city for a very long time and I appreciate all that you and the other officers do for our city. I have a concern - today I was outside doing yard work when one of your officers went blaring through here on a neighborhood street going 60 miles an hour in persuit of an emergency. I appreciate that my street is an easy cut through and allowed him to avoid a lot of traffic and several lights, but this is still a neighborhood with children playing.

Well, mam'm, let me ask you this? Did you have a radar?

(Dropping sweet tone) Excuse me?

Well, Ma'm you say he was going 60 miles an hour - I was just curious how you would know that if you didn't have a radar?

(Pissy growl begins) No, sir... I do not have a radar -

Well, Ma'm I pulled up his GPS and he was only going 45 miles per hour.

Officer - I am not calling to debate the numerical speed of your officer. All I know was that he was going excessively fast for a neighborhood street when he had many other options, including pre-designed main streets that would have better accomodated his requirement for speed.

Well - he was in the neighborhood patrolling for safety when he received the call....

(Starting to lose all sense of decorum) And I appreciate that. I am calling because my 6 and 4 year old play in this neighborhood - a neighborhood with no sidewalks, and God forbid my children had run into the street after a ball or lost control of their bicycle - your officer would have hit and killed them. Now like I said before - I appreciate all your officers for all they have done - including patrolling this notorious street known for speeders - so when an officer disregards the same issues of safety that he upholds - I have concerns - and I would hope that I could call and have someone listen to my concern and not be confronted with such hostility. I grew up in this neighborhood, I now live here and choose to have my children grow up in this neighborhood, and I have a concern about their safety.

Yes, Ma'm ... I will talk to the officer in question and I will advise him that in the future perhaps a little more caution would be best.

(cold)Thank you.

Have a good day Ma'm.

.... here's hoping they haven't tagged my license plate in they system.....

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