Sunday, December 12, 2010

Oh, I Shouldn't Tell You That

     I celebrated a friend's birthday last the skating rink. Yes, seeing a bunch of thirty-something year olds on roller skates was pretty comical. I hadn't been skating since I was a kid. I expected the rink to be full of little brats and overheated teeny boppers. I was surprised to see adults. Not the parents, but actual adults there to make their rounds on eight tiny wheels.
     When we got ready to leave, I noticed an older man enter and sit on a bench. Well, he was one of my clients. As I walked up to him, he smiled and said, "I just flew in from Chicago." Okay, these folks can't travel without explicit permission and a typed travel permit. Suffice it to say, I had not given him permission to leave the parish, much less the state! His response to WHY he was in Chicago was, "Girls, women, good times, you know." Huh? No, I don't recall that in the travel brochure. I guess the look on my face brought him back to reality, because he blurted out, "Oh, I don't think I shoulda told you that. You look different!" Really, ya think?! I always find it amusing when they don't recognize me when I take off the uniform and put on makeup. He quickly recanted and said, "You know I ain't really been in Chicago. I know I can't go no where."
     As he pulled out his personally owned skates from his bag (seriously, this dude is 47 years old with NO kids), I asked him if he'd been drinking. At least he was honest when he replied, "You think I'd be flying if I wasn't drinking?" Ummm, didn't he just tell me he hadn't really been on an unapproved trip? So I asked him why he was drinking and why he was here on a Saturday night. He looked at me like I was crazy for having to ask and enthusiastically told me, "I really like skating!" I guess I should have seen that coming.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

I Can Count to Dog

Fa la la la la, it's Christmas time. All the houses I visit are decorated now. They've got trees & lights & stockings & blow up yard thingies. They've got presents wrapped under the tree. I have a solitary stocking hanging from the mantle...for my puppy. That gets us to the point of this tale.

I went to visit a client this morning. He had reported a new address, so I'd gone to verify it and approve it. There were two cars in the driveway & a dead Santa and reindeer in the yard. Okay, not really dead, but the plug to their air blowers had been pulled from the wall, so they looked like festive victims of a holiday drive-by. The subject answered the door and directed me to the room he shares with his girlfriend. We had our usual, "Are there any guns or drugs here? Of course not ma'am." conversation. The girlfriend said this was her father's house & he was letting them stay here. All seemed good.

As I got ready to leave, I walked back through the living room to the front door. That's when I saw them...24 Christmas stockings. Yes, twenty-four, I counted them. I have no excuse for not seeing them when I came in, except that only three were in my line of sight when I originally entered the house. Three were hung from the mantle, two hung from a shelf, and nineteen hung from hooks on the wall. Stunned and dizzy from the swirling holiday twilight zone, I asked the subject how many people live here. He responded, "Oh, just the two of and her and her dad (pause) and his wife." Ummm, I may be wrong, but I think that equals four. He's working on his GED. Isn't basic math a portion of that test? Of course, nothing he said explained the 24 freaking Christmas stockings scattered around the living room, and yes, each had a different glittered name on it.

Monday, December 6, 2010

I Am an Army of One

So sometimes I see old familiar faces. In my 12+ years at this job, I've seen many of the same folks come through my doors again and again and again and...well, you get the idea. Today was one of those days. I had a drunk revisit me. Normally drunks are pretty passive and not much of a bother, other than that whole, 'I don't really have a drinking problem' thing. This guy isn't too much different, except for that minor 'I need to be loved when I'm drunk' thing he's got going on. Okay, not to get into detail, but when he's drunk, he's walking a fine line to becoming a sex offender. Since I already knew about this, I was prepared today. During his intake, I immediately referred him to various counseling services. He wasn't happy about it. Apparently only me & the local PD & his neighbors & his prospective victims are aware of his inclinations when intoxicated, since he conveniently forgets all of his missteps.
When I had finished my portion of the intake, I delivered him to a clerical for fingerprinting. These ladies have heard all sorts of fun ramblings, blurtings, and unprompted utterances in their short exposure to our clients. I guess the clients feel "safe" when there's no longer a gun in the room. The clerical that processed this guy came to see me when she had completed his procedure, to share what he had told her. He announced to her that, 'I'd rather take on the Hun Army, cross the entire forces, than cross her' (speaking of me). Wow, I think I'm blushing. Maybe I should start wearing bars & stars on my shoulders. Or maybe eagles. What do ya think?