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True Detective Stories

By Wyatt Earp | August 25, 2009

detective-shield1Pity me, for I am a Philadelphia police detective. Pity me also because I am a Philadelphia police detective that answers the damned phone at the worst possible time. Like last night, for example, when I had the severe misfortune to take this call – completely unedited for your amusement.

Me: “Detective division, may I help you?”
Jersey Woman: “Yes, hello? I am calling from New Jersey and am trying to get the police non-emergency line.”

Me: “Well, this is not it, ma’am. You’ve called the detective division.”

It is here that she uttered the most dreaded phrase in police history.

Jersey Woman: “Well, maybe you can help me.”

The sound you hear is me slapping my forehead in frustration.

Jersey Woman: “If I come from the Delaware Bridge and drive up Broad Street, where would I find Old York Road?”

Me: “Excuse me, ma’am, but are you calling a detective division for directions???”
Jersey Woman: “Well, I wanted to call the police non-emergency number, but since I have you . . . “

Me: “Ma’am, did you think to call information instead of the police?”
Jersey Woman “No.”

Me: (Sighing) “Okay ma’am. If you take Broad Street north, you will run into Old York Road at about the 5700 block of Broad Street. It is right after Albert Einstein Medical Center. Our division is about a block away form there.”
Jersey Woman: “Your division? I am not trying to get to your division. I am trying to get to Melrose Park. Thank you, though.” (Hangs up.)

Just so we’re clear here, the Philadelphia Police Department is not a poor man’s Travelocity. There are no roaming gnomes in my division, and we cannot land you a good deal on a hotel room. Now bugger off!

I swear it is an absolute miracle that I am not an alcoholic by now.

Topics: True Detective Stories | 16 Comments »

16 Responses to “True Detective Stories”

  1. Jon Brooks Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    Your new motto should be ..E Pluribus Ductapeum.

  2. Mike47 Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 4:23 pm

    I suggest “Nil Illicit Carborundum”. Freely translated, “Don’t let the bastards grind you down.”

  3. Mrs. Crankipants Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    Hey whatever happened to “Protect and Serve”?
    Doesn’t giving out road directions fall under “Serve”?

    Those Jerseyites are a colorful bunch!

  4. Smite A. Hippie Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 5:25 pm

    you’re a better man than I, sir. I’d have just said “hold on, ma’am.”, then forwarded the call to 411.

    “I swear it is an absolute miracle that I am not an alcoholic by now.”

    *slides over a Guinness*

  5. Ingineer66 Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    That is funny stuff. After hearing that, I think I am going to call the local fire house for cooking tips.

  6. Sully Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 7:35 pm

    These are the days I’m glad nobody can fire me.

    …and I can ignore the phone at will. You poor bastard, Wyatt, if not beer, how do you stay sane?

  7. Rick Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 9:08 pm

    How do you stay sane?

  8. bob (either orr) Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 9:21 pm

    411 in Philly? Smite, that would have put her somewhere around Amish country… Better Wyatt directed her.

  9. mdmhvonpa Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 9:53 pm

    Say … since you are on the subject … I’m on this road paved with good intentions and I was wondering, does it lead to Center City or Trenton?

  10. RT Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 10:02 pm

    I apologize for the ignorance of people from my state. We’re not all that dumb.

  11. Wyatt Earp Says:
    August 25th, 2009 at 11:16 pm

    Jon – Okay, that’s the funniest comment of the day!

    Mike47 – Nah, they’re much-needed comic relief.

    Mrs. Crankipants – Shhh . . . I think RT is listening!

    Smite – That was my only issue with Cheeseburger in Paradise: No Guinness on tap.

    Ingineer66 – See if they can tell you how to smoke a ham.

    Sully – I drive other people insane with this blog. It’s not much, but it’s all I have.

    Rick – G-U-I-N-N-E-S-S.

    Bob – Good point. I figure this little good deed would keep me in one of the better spots in Hell, instead of front row, center.

    Mdmhvonpa – Neither. It leads to Middle America.

    RT – I’m still trying to figure out where she meant when she said “Delaware Bridge?” The Delaware Memorial, or any of the bridges crossing the Delaware River?

  12. Jason Says:
    August 26th, 2009 at 10:23 am

    I was at a gas station up in the Poconos when a Jersey woman was struggling to figure out how to work the gas pump. I watched (with a certain amount of glee) as she became more and more frustrated until she began screaming “Hey Boy Scout. Yeah, yew, over there. Hey Boy Scout, hows about one of yuse comes ova heeeea and pumps my gas.”

    There was a pack of weebalos and fathers taking a break from what looked to be a road trip of sorts. The fathers looked on in horror as this woman verbally accosted them. And she was pissed that no one would help her.

    I took pity and helped her with the pump and left with a parting “listen lady, you should switch from obnoxious to sweet and maybe even hold up a 10 spot. You will get a little further.”

    And this was a woman in her early thirties…

  13. RT Says:
    August 26th, 2009 at 10:59 am

    I wondered the same thing, Wyatt. It was probably Walt Whitman or Ben Franklin. She’d be really lost if she thought the Delaware Memorial would take her directly to Philly. Commodore Barry, maybe???

    Jason…do not confuse the obnoxious folks who don’t know how to pump gas with the educated New Jersey lasses like me.

    Just for the record, I hate Bruce Springsteen, pronounce my words correctly, and I don’t live in malls.

  14. Jason Says:
    August 26th, 2009 at 12:10 pm

    I don’t cast a wide aspersion of idiocy to all who dwell in the people’s republic of New Gersey. The good Lord has done ample work of seeding most of society with mal adjusted tuckfards.

    It’s like the joke “New Jersey has the most waste sites per capita and California has the most attorneys per capita. Know why? Jersey got first pick…”

    Everybody hates lawyers until they need one.


  15. Wyatt Earp Says:
    August 26th, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    Jason – A single woman, probably. Who is marrying that?

    RT – Bruce Springsteen sucks donkey balls. Oh, sorry.

    Jason – Truer words were never spoken.

  16. Snigs Says:
    August 26th, 2009 at 8:15 pm

    I’ve got one more month at the dental office- I’ll see if I can’t get you hooked up with my nitrous guy. At least it lets you giggle through situations like this. :D