Post and photo by the Hawthorne Hawkman.
Disclaimer #1: Alleged prostitution bust.
Disclaimer #2: Prior to moving in, I had to convince people that this corner is not as tough as everyone thought it was. After moving in, I realized it's not even as tough as I thought it was. But stuff still goes down.
Last week as I was walking around, a semi pulled up and parked in the vacant lot right across the street from me. "Well this certainly is unexpected," thought I. The trucker hopped out of the cab and began to let his doberman out for a bit. Not wanting to call 911 immediately, on the off chance the pit stop was so the dog could do his business, I took care of some business of my own down the street. Upon return from Broadway Liquors, a woman in a sun dress crossed the street and called out to the trucker...
..."Hey, looks like you got a lot of room in there!"
At that point, it was time for me to pretend I was waiting for the bus so I could see what was going down. (Although I certainly didn't want to see *everything* that was going down.) Mr. Trucker and Sun Dress Lady gave each other several hugs, but that's all they were doing - hugging. I'm not even sure if he got to first base. Well, this looked rather innocent. Maybe I was wrong about what I thought I was seeing. Suddenly I was reminded of a childhood memory with a grade school friend we'll call Timmy.
I was over at Timmy's house watching "The Goonies" on VHS for the forty-third time when I noticed his mom hugging the mailman. I inquired about this, and Timmy said it was because his mom and the mailman were good friends. Subsequent Goonies viewings happened with concurrent views of his mom hugging the plumber, the pizza delivery guy, and even a couple of Jehovah's witnesses. Each time, Timmer's explanation was that they were "good friends" with his mom. But when she was hugging the cable guy, I asked how they could be such good friends if they just met.
"Look, my mom has lots of good friends, ok?" said Timmy, obviously uncomfortable for some reason.
"Yeah, I get it, but how come I never see her hug your dad?"
Timmy didn't invite me over as much after that, until high school when his folks got divorced and he went through an emo phase. We'd turn on black lights, listen to The Cure, and...where was I again? Oh yes, trying to come up with an innocent explanation for the Trucker/Sun Dress hug. Which might have looked like a happy reunion if it had occurred elsewhere, like at an actual truck stop.
(Note to self: If, while observing public displays of affection, you happen to think, "What I am looking at would appear more innocuous if it were going on at a truck stop," it's probably prostitution.)
So when the two of them got in the cab, but the engine (of the truck) did not start, that's when 911 was alerted to what I was seeing. On an encouraging note, they had already received at least one call about the truck itself. So one of my neighbors or a passerby was alert enough to call it in almost as soon as a truck parked where it should not have been. That person, however, had not witnessed or reported the woman stopping by for a visit.
Shortly after adding that juicy tidbit to the report, an officer arrived at the scene. Mr. Trucker and Madamoiselle Sun Dress had their extracurriculars cut short by Officer Friendly and were called out of the cab. After some questioning and hopefully a citation, everyone was free to go. The trucker drove off after a few more hugs and Ms. Sun Dress spoke to another fine gentleman at the corner for a while before making her own departure.
Once scenarios like this repeat themselves enough, my intersection will become known as one where unlawful activities are simply not tolerated. With the coordination with alert neighbors, we're already well on our way.