This last weekend, I was headed to work, it was dark, early Saturday morning at 4:30 am. I should have suspected things may not be quite right, as the moon was closing in on full and I drove unaware that forever above my head, a block of cheese would mold the day to come.
The first clue to this happened quickly as I was on my way to work, driving down Killingsworth I shot by a sight that warranted a double take, and instinctively I hit my brakes. An empty wheel chair sat in the road, and next to it lay a still body. I had already dialed 911 and began describing the scene still squinting to catch movement in hopes that I wasn't seeing my very first street corpse.
Recently, I helped my son pull his dead cat from under a crawl space in his house. The little fluffy ball of fur was ice cold, stiff, and felt three times heavier then when she was alive.
It chilled me to the bone and I certainly didn't want to make the transition from dead feline to dead homo sapiens this quickly (or ever, for that matter).
When I rolled down my window I could hear the man lying in the gutter speaking belligerently and sounding quite drunk. Now what? I should run to his aid! Give him mouth to mouth if necessary, (visions of his vomit in my mouth at 4am almost made ME hurl) hoist him back into his chair, be the hero in the movie of my life...but, I was running late and honestly; what if it was a trap, or the guy was as crazy as he sounded and bit off my ear, Tyson style, or worse...what if he had shit and pee'd himself? I hate the people that smell like pee who enter my cab. The small space fills so quickly and I force myself to be nice while not breathing through my nose. But you smell it anyway and the thought of touching it on the way to work. I would make a terrific nurse.
Some hero I was turning out to be. Fight or flight? I was on the next plane to anywhere.
Then the 911 operator said that he'd have an officer on the scene right away and I took that to be a hall pass and sped off to begin my day.
My first customer was a call to pick up a guy. I knew something was off when I called ahead to let him know that I was approaching and a woman answered the phone who was clearly intercepting his call. As I rolled up there was a police car on the corner and the doors opened as I came to a stop. The female officer came over and opened the door to the cab, alerting me that the blood wasn't 'his' and that he had a credit card, was that okay? Well, uh, sure. I'm pretty easy going. So this young shirtless guy covered in blood sat on my back seat I inventories the situation, immediately noticing that his knee was skinned badly and the blood that had flowed down to his ankle was clearly his own. So of course my first words were pointing out that was indeed his blood. Do all cops lie? He agreed it was his and then went on to tell me he was terrified. What the fuck happened? I asked as politely as I could muster...