Friday, April 06, 2007

The Booking: Charlotte Part Two

Mr. Sunshine Daydream had left me and I had a new officer escort now. This man was in a much meaner mood than Mr. Sunshine Daydream was. He was all business and I think there to intimidate us as much as possible. He was very good at his job.

Just outside the police barricade there was a man supporting a gigantic crucifix where all us prisoners could see. Upon the cross were the words “those who follow the Dead follow them straight to Hell.” It was a fitting sign. Normally I would have had a few words for the fellow, but in my current position, I would only serve to prove his point. It is hard to take the moral high ground when being detained.

I was seated at a long picnic style table in a specially roped off part of the Charlotte Coliseum’s parking lot. They had a few trailers set up outside the main gate so all those lucky enough to have avoided arrest could look at us as they entered. At least I had decent eye-candy while I was officially booked and charged.

Directly across from me was a beautiful girl, about 20 years old with long dark blonde hair and amazing green eyes. She wore no make-up and looked like she stepped out of the 70’s. I had a hard time concentrating on the cop during my booking. I remember laughing internally as she slipped her hand out from the plexi-cuffs to scratch her nose every time her officer escort looked down to write what she said. Curiosity made me check and I found I could slip out of mine rather easily as well, but chose not to risk showing it off. They would smirk at the cute girl playing around, but they would jump on the guy with free hands. To them I was a six-foot-three druggie and nothing more. I would become more later on, but as of now, I was just a druggie to them.



“Where are you from?”

“Miami originally, but I came here from Tampa.”



“You drove here from Florida to get arrested? Seems stupid to me.” The guy was a smart ass.

“No, I drove here to see a concert. Getting arrested was just a bonus.” So was I.

I glanced down at the paper work he was filling out on me and noticed some very scary words next to “offense” on the form. He had written “possession of less than an ounce and a half.” I roll big joints. I plead guilty to that, but there is no way I had a 42-gram joint in my shoe. It is physically impossible besides impractical. At the least I would have two 21-gram joints.

“I had a joint,” I said almost forgetting to pretend to remain cuffed. My finger really wanted to point out his mistake, but I went for words instead.


“And you are charging me with less than an ounce and a half. I had nowhere near that much. I don’t want to be charged for more than I had.”

“That is the least we can charge you with.”

“How is the judge going to know I only had a joint then?”

“He will.”

“How? You wrote an ounce and a half. That is all they are going to know then.”

A dirty look from officer Unfriendly quickly ended my debate with the man. I was high and I am stupid, but I was neither that high nor that stupid.

Two of my three friends were arrested along with me. The third friend, the guy who was holding the pot avoided the arrest by not being in the mood to smoke when the rest of us were. While I looked a cop in the eye during my hitting off a pipe, he was resting on the hood of the car watching the sky go by. Since he was not smoking, the cops did not arrest him. I kept reminding myself that he was out so I was fine. We just needed to get word to him.

The Charlotte police were very well prepared for the shows. I was personally impressed with their organization. After being booked, we were shackled to one another and loaded into unmarked white vans. Those vans drove us around to the back of the coliseum where we were escorted into a large room backstage. At this point, the officers told us they were going to remove our plexi-cuffs.

There is a look of total shock mixed with fear that a person gets in their eyes when their secure delusion is shattered. This was the look the ten cops had on their faces as forty-five men they thought they bound all held up their free hands and offered the still closed plexi-cuffs. If there were a studio audience, there would have been a deafening roar of laughter and applause. We all snickered and giggled a bit, but really were trying our best to be respectful. Fear does that to you.

The bail was fifty dollars as set by a judge they even had on the premises. We pooled our money and managed to have enough to bail one of us out. Since I had no idea how to drive stick, I was not even considered. No matter what, it appeared I was going to jail for a little while and there was nothing I could do about it.



Scary Monster said...

Good stuff. Me will hold all comments untill the end of the saga.


a.k.a. Zooomabooma said...

Part 2 and not done yet? Alright, i'll wait for more since you've sucked me in this far. Sadly reminding me of the paranoid terror outside of the Chapel Hill shows in '91 and bringing back memories of my arrest for jumping the turnstile on the NYC subway during the '94 MSG run... but those of us who followed the Dead, we've all got out stories...

Anonymous said...

Neat stuff. Read both just now and am looking forward to the next installment. This reminds me of some concerts I vaguely remember seeing in the SF Bay area in the 60's.

Kanrei said...

I am so happy you are enjoying it. The story is true for the record. Only some quotes have been changed due to poor memory. There should only be one more part or possibly two depending on how verbose I get.

littlebirdblue said...

I think you've got a memoir in the works, K.