So we get herded into this area, which holds 2000 people I was told. Every one of us paid $50 to take this class. You do the math. Someone is making bank off of this. So the presentation starts with some Highway Patrol officer telling us all that we're trapped there for the next 2 hours, and that there is no talking, no drinking of any fluids or eating of any food or any cell phone activity allowed. Violators will be asked to leave and lose their $50. Pay attention to this, because it comes up later. Now you who know me know I always wear a hat. Me and at least 5 other guys in the place were wearing hats. Nothing offense or outlandish, just baseball styled hats that everybody wears. After Mr. Highway Patrol officer is done informing us of our rights, some lady takes the microphone and explains why were all here. I swear I must of had a sign around my neck that said Please fuck with me, because the cop comes off the stage and right up to me and says "Take off your hat. No hats are allowed to be worn during the class." Less than 2 seats away from me, in a different row, was another guy wearing a hat. What about him? I ask the officer. "Don't worry about him. I'm telling you. And don't think that just because I'm a Highway Patrol officer that I can't arrest you." While I'm sitting there fighting back the urge to laugh, wondering where in the Hell that statement came from, I took off my hat and then the games began. If I tell you that this Cop had a hard on for me, and did everything in his power to get me to mouth off to him and thus, get kicked out of the class, you probably wouldn't believe me, but he did. Holy fuck was this gonna be a long 2 hours.
One of the Speakers was this Cop who got hit by a Toyota 4 X 4 truck at 95 MPH while trying to lay some spikes out on the freeway. To say that he made Crackhead Bob seem like a perfect public orator is an understatement. The guy could barely speak, but someone handed him a microphone, and now we were supposed to do this call-and-response thing with him, where he says something and we're supposed to repeat it back to him. Nobody had a clue what he was saying, and I had people all around me asking what he said. Good thing I speak Crackhead Bob-ese. Highway Patrol officer comes up to me, not anybody else, and reminds me there's no talking allowed. I tell him that people were asking me what the Speaker said, and it wasn't my fault he wasn't understandable. He got a bit miffed and turned on his heel and left. What was he gonna do? Tell me he WAS a good speaker? LOL It was a bit embarrassing to hear him speak and only drove the point home further and irritated me more. I didn't belong here. And I was ready to leave by any means necessary.
Everyone that spoke on stage extolled the horrors of alcohol, and I was bored to tears. After the Cop that was hit @ 95 MPH was done speaking, almost everyone in the place gave the guy a standing ovation. Out of the 10 or so people in the place who didn't stand up and applaud this bozo, guess who they singled out? Yup. So Mr. Highway Patrol officer comes up to me and says "Why aren't you standing up?" So I tells him, I didn't know the standing ovation was a requirement of the class. Needless to say, he got a bit upset... heh heh heh. He's yelling at me that I'm here to participate, and that I'm here because I was arrested for drunk driving. I'm sick of it so I start to spar back with him, telling him that not only am I not there for being a drunk driver (Xanax and Vicodin, thank you very much), but that I've lost family members to drunk drivers (true) and that I haven't had a drop of booze in 15 years (a huge lie). He's flabbergasted at what I'm telling him, thinking of a rebuttal when this short female officer comes up to us and says, "Is there a problem here?" I notice she's got her hands unlocking her handcuffs from her police belt, so I says, There's no problem here Officer. If there is, you're causing it. With a look that said WTF ? all over her face, she looked at the Highway Patrol officer who, much to his credit and shock to me, shook her off and told her that everything was fine. Whew. Dodged a bullet on that one but I was fed up and ready to go back to jail. I really didn't care at that point.
The Class didn't end soon enough for me. After a huge clusterfuck trying to get the proof required of my taking the class, I rewarded myself with a huge Philly cheese steak meal. As I walked past the Highway Patrol officer I told him to have a good life. He just scowled at me as I left the auditorium. It felt great to have been put to the test and to have passed with flying colors. Justin flaked on practice, so me and George called it a early night and went home.
I know this has absolutely NOTHING to do with punk rock or music in General, but if you don't like it, you can always come back here tomorrow and I'll tell you about the interesting band projects I've been invited to be a part of, as well as why Infestshit cancelled their Summer Tour plans. Helltown Harlots are playing Divebar this Saturday. Go check them out after the Union 13 / Infestshit gig @ G & L. That is all.