When I was fourteen years old, I ran from the cops. I wasn’t in trouble and I hadn’t done anything wrong. So, why was I running, you may be asking…?
Well, to answer that I have to provide you with a little bit of back story; when I was fourteen, I was a little shit! There, you’re all caught up. 😊
Now, why was I evading the long arm of the law if I hadn’t done anything? Simple, on my walks home from school, and that school residing in a small town, it was not all that uncommon to see police vehicles passing by. It was hypothesized by my friends and I (mostly me), that should you lock eyes with a passing police cruiser and then take off in a fervid sprint in a direction opposite of theirs, their curiosity and impulsivity to act would demand that they pursue — and I was right!
On my way home from school on a warm spring day much like the one we are having now, I found myself on the final descent of the hill leading to my place. And while meandering and grazing the fields of thought, my eyes captured sight of something distinguishable from that of the ordinary — an approaching (and unsuspecting) police cruiser.
It took no time at all to be bitten by intrigue, its venom of zeal began to course through my juvenile veins. I knew exactly what I was about to do, and that poor cop didn’t have the slightest clue.
As his engine grew near, my eyes began to widen. My mouth became desiccate, a slight and subtle gleam of sweat started to percolate. It was time. The officer behind the wheel peered gently to his right in acknowledgment of my presence. I swear, he even smiled in friendly gesture, but just before finishing his cordial gesticulation, and for a finite moment in time, our eyes locked in an unbreakable pas de deux!
3… 2… 1!
I broke gaze and bolted in a spirited dash away from the passing police cruiser. Over the sound of my puffing inhalations, I heard the unmistakable squelch of tires fornicating with asphalt. I then heard the wine of an excited engine as the vehicle banked sharply in a direction opposite of its original mode of travel.
I didn’t look back, I just kept running, my arms sawing frantically, but as I did, I began to laugh uncontrollably. In my mind, I demanded that I cease and desist this delinquency, but for whatever reason, I couldn’t! The result of this laughter was a slight decrease in my ability to maintain speed, and in no time at all, the now snarling police vehicle pulled in front of me and even cut just ahead climbing onto the sidewalk, its front end now blocking my path.
The driver side door exploded open, revealing a uniformed man with Adonis like features and towering physique. This observation dulled my cackle rather quickly.
The officer cast laser beams from his eyes and halted me in place with unspoken demand.
“Why are you running? What did you do? You steal from the Little Store or something?” He barked.
The Little Store was a diminutive convenience shop that lived on the opposite side of the school. It would be overrun by zit-faced boys and gum-popping girls every lunch hour, and it was well known that their one-cent candies fell victim to the dreaded “five finger discount” on five days of the week — the five days when school was in session, so his question made sense.
“No. No, sir.” I panted my response.
“Then why the heck are you running?” He snapped sternly. I hadn’t actually thought that far ahead in my plan, I didn’t have a ready-made retort. “Well..?” His baritone pressed once more.
Now thinking on the fly, I responded, “I was racing.”
The officer allowed his eyes to survey the area surrounding both he and I. Apart from the both of us, the only things in existence were the swaying pines and the sound of a lawnmower in the relative distance, and perhaps a bird or two.
“Racing who?!” His words heavy in disbelief.
“Um… me! My personal best. I mean. I — I sprint this road all the time… and… Oh! I was using your car as a start point. Yeah! That’s — that’s what happened.” I responded confidently as though what I had just said was irrefutable and impervious to critique.
When I was fourteen, I raced a cop. He caught me, pulled me over, asked me what the hell I was doing, and then sighed with deflate before remounting his vehicle and driving away. Our eyes met one last time — no gentle smile, no friendly wave, only silent castigation.
The moral of this story? … when I was fourteen… I was a little shit!
Maybe you can relate…?
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