Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Pain Killers

Here is the tale of my mis-adventure yesterday where I witnessed the Boston Police size up and then confiscate prescription medications from a supposed-dealer in a McDonald's.

I had said goodbye to my friend at Government Center and I was about to board the Blue Line back home when my stomach reminded me that I hadn't eaten a single thing all day. I thought, I could either wait until I get home in about forty minutes and find something there (slim chance) or run to McDonald's and grab a Big Mac (across the street). Of course the obvious choice is clear. I proceeded to McDonald's and ordered a hamburger and some fries and thought I'd head upstairs to the second floor seating area and relax while reading my book. Little did I know I would have the entertainment literally brought to me.

When I got upstairs, the whole seating area was empty. I took this as a fortunate sign and sat in the corner at a round table near the window, granting me a view of the entire upstairs area as well as the street below. After a few minutes, this overweight, obnoxious guy came up the stairs with crutches, yet walking perfectly well. He started talking to this old man who was standing outside the bathroom.

Old Man: "They're down there, you can tell."
Crutchy: "You're being paranoid, let's just do this."
Old Man: "They're down there, plain clothes cops."
Crutchy: "Just get in the bathroom and let's go."

They proceeded into the bathroom together. Man, I thought, a drug deal going down in front of me. Here I am, munching on some fries, nonchalantly peeking over at them out of the corner of my eye. But then I laughed at the ridiculousness of the situation. This paranoid old man who clearly wants his fix is scuffling with this fat guy on crutches, who presumes to write him off as being on a bad trip.

Little did Crutchy know that Old Man was right. A minute later about four plains clothes cops came up the stairs and pulled Crutchy out of the bathroom - I'm not sure what happened to Old Man, I never saw him again. It wasn't all "Boston Police, hands up!" or any commotion like that. The cops simply questioned him and asked why he was holding pain killers in his hand. I'll get to that in a second.

First, I want to comment on how stereotypical these cops were. Maybe it was because they were plains clothes cops who have to fit in with their locale, but these guys were the quintessential Boston bros - complete with accent, gruff demeanor, and Irish last names. And then there was the lone Asian cop. Boston Police are one of a kind - it brings me back to the day last summer when the police woke me up at my friend's house looking for my friend's friend whose father had a warrant out for attempted murder (LONG story, which totally deserves a blog post here when I get the time).

Anyway, back to Crutchy. The cops asked him why he had the meds and Crutchy began spouting out this ridiculous story about how he was recently hit by a car. Meanwhile, Asian Cop pulls out about five different pill bottles from Crutchy's backpack and reads the dates on the labels which date back way before this supposed "car crash." One of the Irish cops looked at Crutchy and said, "Haven't I arrested you before near North Station?" Yet Crutchy stuck with his story.

In the end, the cops confiscated all the meds but allowed Crutchy to remain a free man (for the time being) and escorted him out. One of the cops who stayed behind to do some paperwork happily called out to Crutchy as he hobbled down the stairs, "See you next week."

I'm not sure what's more disturbing: that I was eating alone at a McDonald's and saw this little show go down a few feet away from me, or that I was eating alone at a McDonald's? I'm going to have to say the latter.

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