Wednesday, 10 June 2009

The police come a knocking

Ju and I had just finished playing our evening game of cards (yeah, we play cards every evening. So what?). I was at my computer and Ju was just about to go to the bathroom when she came running back saying that there were two men in policemen hats at our front door (we have frosted glass at our front door). I said I'd check it out and sure enough there were two coppers out front. One of them was well over nine feet tall and both of them were armed with guns, cuffs and bullet-proof vests. Anyway, I said, "Good evening officers. Is something the problem?" To that, one of them said, "We don't know yet. Can we please come in? We need to talk about something." It seemed as if they were expecting me to open the door. But they hadn't rung the doorbell. Come to think of it, the doorbell may not be functioning any more. I'll have to check it out. Anyway, I had no option but to let them in. The big guy had already intimidated me. Once they were in, one of them said that I'd better shut the door. I had a big metaphorical lump of shit piling up behind me already. I enquired again as to what the problem was. When I said this, one of them said, "Sir I will ask you just once to please stay calm." I shat the fuck up (shat being the past tense of shut in this context). Then they asked us if we had been having any problems with our neighbours. By this time Ju had joined us too. We said, "No - not at all." They asked us about the Chinese family downstairs. I had just borrowed a drill from them yesterday to fix my bed - how could there be a problem? I was really confused. I did not even know if they were complaining against us or if they had been complained against. In any case, we vehemently denied there being any problem between us and any of our neighbours. Then it became clear that someone had complained against the Chinese people and this was their last chance. But they're just a man, his wife and their four year old daughter. Who would complain against them? There was a silence and one of the policemen said "Oh dear" in that really British manner. He said that he couldn't understand the Chinese man and that made things difficult. The tension had eased. Everyone was confused. My pile of shit began to get smaller by the second. The smaller policeman looked at me and said nice shirt (I was wearing my Big Lebowski "the dude abides" shirt). He said, "at least you have nice taste". I told them, "I thought we were in trouble". And they said, "Oh if you were in trouble, we wouldn't have come in, taken our hats off and had a civil conversation with you." I laughed awkwardly. They thanked us and apologised for disturbing us and took our leave. Weird. I just hope the Chinese family hasn't complained against us - for what - I don't know. And I hope nobody has complained against them. They're quite friendly and thanks to them, I fixed my bed!

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