It’s funny that it began with a refrigerator. By funny, I mean, I recently spent five days in the county jail.
After the initial anger over the injustice of my arrest, and the interrupted sleep of sobering up, I always find myself sighing in relief upon waking in a too bright cell with several similarly clothed strangers. There has existed, always, a very secret part of my brain that tells me “you belong behind bars”. Such an existence fits me in a way nothing else ever has. Being locked up provides sobriety that I, myself, cannot provide, meds are taken at regular intervals, there are an almost unlimited amount of books and the time to read them all. I live my life, my “free” life, as if I were a prisoner so the actuality of it happening seems inevitable and comfortable. I don’t have to shave my legs on a regular basis, answer my cell phone, work, pay taxes, shower daily; I’m not expected to vote, call my parents, date, have sex, have kids, or brush my hair. So I wasn’t concerned about this most recent arrest, I was only angry that it was for once, undeserved.
For the record, my previous five or six Public Intoxication arrests have been my own fault. I was drunk and feisty; thrown in solitaire and told to “Shut the !@#$ up, or you will never see a Judge!”. I like to grunt and oink at the male officers, and drop pick-up lines for the lady officers. (Despite my best efforts none have responded.) There was the time I used my work phone as if it were a grenade, pulling the imaginary pin with my teeth and screaming “Buddy,cover me while I throw this grenade!” at a police officer in Garland. He wanted my phone so I gave it to him. Apparently, I slapped a bartender for not serving me free drinks. I paid for that stunt by spending a couple of hours strapped to a chair after being forcefully shoved into several hallway walls. I can only guess at their intentions, but I am certain they only wanted me to have a closer look at the cracks in the concrete…
One of my favorite P.I.’s involved another friend of mine and myself in the back of a Garland police vehicle after having fallen asleep at a red light, we were woken by several firemen who couldn’t understand why we wouldn’t move out of their way after several minutes of the loud “Aaaaaa-ooooo-GAH” that only fire trucks can produce. At the time the only identification I had on me was my ex-girlfriends and I didn’t bother to correct them as they filled out the citation. That fun night was dismissed from my record on account of my not being her when I arrived for my court date.
Several years ago I was out in Rockwall, drinking the night away with my, once upon a time friend, Rachel when we suddenly found ourselves arguing at a gas station. Once we pulled out into traffic on the Frontage road I bailed out of the car screaming obscenities over my shoulder as I rolled into the ditch. We had so many fights before similar to this that she had run out of patience with me and my antics so she proceeded to drive herself home while I walked into the night over a bridge a mile long towards home, or so I thought. Every time a semi passed by me I leapt over the concrete embankment into the tangled fauna that grew on the lake-side of the barrier. After half an hour of my duck-and-cover, action movie stunts, an officer pulled up and I just walked up and climbed into the backseat. He asked where are you headed and I said “home”. After telling him my home address and my work address he made a U-turn and took me to Chili’s. My mother met us there and he eventually issued my fourth Public Intoxication citation. I was furious! I couldn’t believe that after having decided to walk instead of drive, I could be punished. So I tore up the ticket and threw it on the ground. My mother, picked it up, pointed towards her car, and apologized to the officer while I threw myself into the backseat of her Dodge Stratus. Upon arriving home, I was sent to my room and told “Sober up, we’ll talk in the morning”. Not likely, I am often a runner while intoxicated, and this night was not going to be any different. I called my friend and told her to meet me at the entrance to my subdivision and out the window I went. I jumped three unnecessary fences and bear crawled across six lawns before reaching the end of my street. I stood up to my full height of five feet four inches and sprinted through the night, diving behind the entrance sign and there, I curled up and waited breathless for my friend to show. I’m never certain of what I am running from at times like these, but I feel desperate and willing to go to any length to escape this feeling of being pursued.
These tales could go on indefinitely if I allowed them to, so I will find my abrupt conclusion here, in the present. I offer you this:
I believe there to be a level of ignorance attached to those who have never been to jail. You probably believe the people inside those concrete walls are “crack heads”, murderers, all around lesser people than you. But mostly, I have only met good people who made one or two mistakes. Like Shanda, the mother of two who failed to pay her probation fees on time. Original crime? Smoking pot. Besides me, who doesn’t smoke pot? You just haven’t been caught yet. Have you been out drinking at a bar and walked home, or walked to your car and a cop accosted you and suddenly you find yourself being finger printed for a Public Intoxication. It’s not just the rowdy and rude who get caught drunk in public, its also those who are just sitting outside of their sister’s old house watching two men try and fit a large refrigerator through a small front door.
© 2011 Jennifer Bermudez
FrankiesGirl6Yr from South Carolina on February 25, 2011:
After reading your Hub, I found that it held my attention, which is a drastic turn from the last several hubs I’ve attempted to read. Although I try to support hubpages by reading, commenting, and voting, most of the time I can’t make it to the end of the “Here’s a Suggestion” or individual opinion on their “Need to knows” and “How you should live”. So Good Job, Thanks..
In reference to you believing that there’s a “level of ignorance attached to those who have never been to jail”. I think there are many of us out there that live in instant risk of getting locked up daily and know that if we keep testing the odds, we will get caught. I think those who have an “I don’t give a shit attitude” or have a problem with addiction, especially alcohol, are those who are at the most risk of getting caught. Before you think I am being bias, let me explain. Those with an “I don’t give a shit attitude” have little or nothing to loss. They also have little to look forward to and previous marks on their record that have already fucked things up for future plans that may call for a clean record. Now why especial alcoholics? Because out of all of the addicts I have encountered (lived and practiced with) alcohol seems to reveal the rowdiest, risk taking, and rebellious individuals out of the bunch. Their always testing the bar or growing balls they soberly wouldn’t have, that are intensified publicly. So to get to my point, all who have not been to jail are not incorporated with a level of ignorance, in fact those of us who are involved daily in activities that are fair to say “in the boundaries of incarceration” are just very very careful, are surrounded by the arrest, bond hearing, and sentencing of friends and have something important to look forward to.