THROWBACK THURSDAY (MUSIC)

MARCIA GRIFFITHS – “ELECTRIC BOOGIE”

You could not go to a black persons cookout without hearing this song! Not sure if this is true today, but you definitely here the Cha Cha Slide more often now.

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THE DREADED SEASON

Since July 2011 my wife has been dealing with an autoimmune disease, called lupus, and even this day we still keep learning different ways to fight and deal.  I’ve mentioned it before, but the best way I can describe this disease to someone is to have them imagine their worse case of the flu or pneumonia, and imagine that same feeling every single day for the rest of your life with no medicine to help.  It does get frustrating when my wife shares this information with people and one of the first things that is mentioned is to exercise.  You gonna exercise at the gym or at home when you have pneumonia and your joints are always achy and just under constant pain?  Imagine yourself going for a run with a fever of over 100 and every time you move your joints are tearing apart with each movement.  You think you can run through that pain and not pass out from the enormous stress your body will be under?  Probably not!

As of today there is no cure for this disease, and no specific test to determine if you have lupus or not.  Numerous tests must be done and the collection of all the tests taken are usually determined whether you have the disease.  Since moving to the northeast from the Mid-Atlantic region, her lupus flare ups and seizures have dropped dramatically, but the threat is always there for her to have either at anytime.  During the winter months her lupus is very much in remission and doesn’t cause much discomfort, but when it does it shows up in an ugly form.  Officially winter is over and with warm weather on the way, this is usually when her lupus starts to slowly rear its ugly head.  It’s bad enough that she is allergic to everything under the sun, but when those get going and her lupus is acting a fool you can only imagine the mess that goes on.  We don’t always have full warning of when her lupus will flare up and when seizures will come, but limiting the amount of stress that is there and making sure we eat the proper foods is one way to fight.

We are now entering into our second week of Spring and so far so good.  She’s beginning her new job at a new company and we can only pray that the lupus will allow her to perform to her best before it decides to be a hindrance.  The late spring early summer seasons are the worse with temperatures rising and the humidity high, but not as humid and hot as it would be in the Mid-Atlantic region.  Not to mention the doctor we see is more understanding and much more awesome than the ones we had in Maryland.  I’d travel across country and the pond to see this doctor! I’m not kidding with that notion either.  The medicines that my wife takes for her lupus helps her deal with it, but can be highly addictive.  With this as our main concern we are always looking for natural ways to help deal with her ailment, but at the same time we are not just going to try anything that everyone suggest.  Our main goal is to keep the stress level down for her and consume the proper foods.  Now that the bitter coldness of winter is behind us, we tend to change our diet to much more vegetables and fruits.

Coming up this May is Lupus Awareness Month and something that I am very passionate about.  Purple is the color of disease and I am looking at wearing something purple everyday for the entire month!

Henry Scott

COULD THESE WORK HERE IN OUR CITIES?

As anyone who lives in a city knows, public sidewalks these days are a free-for-all of pedestrians staggering along, zombie-like, staring intently at the screens of their phones. As well as infuriating other pedestrians, there’s some evidence that this behavior increases our chances of being hit by a car. To avoid that fate for its…

via People won’t stop staring at their phones, so a Dutch town put traffic lights on the ground — Quartz

THE RIDE AROUND

CAPITAL DISTRICT – ALBANY

Sometimes my wife and I get the energy to do something, such as wanting to go out and grace the public with our presence when we feel like dealing with people.  Yes, we are introverts, and our people energy is usually in the deficit by the time Friday evening comes around.  So that plays a big role on when I go out with people and why my ‘out time’ is so spread out.  Plus, not to mention I like being home and don’t like a lot of drama and issues that sometimes going out brings, but once in a while I don’t mind sharing my time with friends.  On this particular Saturday evening/late afternoon, we decided to go out for a drive and see where we end up.  We did this activity a lot in Maryland, and we ended up in Hershey and other parts of the area until our curiosity was fulfilled.  On this Saturday night we ended up doing just that, driving around until we felt it was time to head home back to our four legged kids.

Once we got in my truck we had no particular direction to go, except wherever I decided to go and turn.  Doing this sometimes actually helps us learn new routes and new ways of getting around places.  I ended up learning two roads that can help me get around traffic or road closures, but hopefully I will remember them when I need them.  At one point I lost which direction we were going, but since we didn’t have any particular direction to go it didn’t really matter where we ended up; however, certain streets and neighborhoods we avoided.  We found ourselves in Rotterdam, Schenectady, Watervliet (parts that are not just outside our neighborhood) and Niskayuna.  Not only was the drive fun and exciting, but very informative.  I saw parts of Niskayuna that I don’t remember seeing and saw beautiful houses that could be our goal one day to either purchase or build.  Living in this town would be too far of a commute for me, but nothing wrong with wishing and setting a goal for us.

During our travels through a sketchy part of Schenectady, we ended up passing by Union College and the car dealership where I bought my truck from last year.  As we drove down one of the sketchiest parts of the city, we came to a stop light and while waiting for the light to turn green my wife looked up to her right and noticed a crosswalk sign.  Ordinarily this wouldn’t be anything interesting to look at, but at closer examination you could see that the sign used to be a Dead End sign.  How we know? It was repainted or the letters were removed, but the imprints of the letters ‘Dead End’ were still present, it was placed upside down for whatever reason and they painted the shadow figure that represents crosswalk ahead.  Seeing this just made our night more interesting as we laughed our asses off at what we just observed.  I made the joke in a black ghetto voice overlay, “We need to save money! We’ll just use this sign and reuse it.  We need a crosswalk sign!”

This was just very amusing to us and only added to the interesting this we saw while driving through Rotterdam.  First thing, to me Rotterdam doesn’t seem to be a very appealing town to live in, but I suppose for some it is a new level above being in the trashy parts of Schenectady.  We learned of where one of the most interesting malls to visit in the Capital Region is in Rotterdam, but from what we could see it didn’t look all that interesting.  I suppose this is the mall where the aquarium is located, but that wasn’t what got our attention.  The thing we saw was a small gym, located in a small strip mall, called ‘Average Joe Fitness’.  It is a 24-hour gym, but as we drove passed it, it looked poorly lit and not very inviting.  This also became a butt of our jokes for the rest of our drive back into Schenectady.  As we drove back through Schenectady, we passed a house and looking at the house made us remember why some people end up getting burglarized.  This lady had all the blinds in the front of her house wide open where you could see her big HD television, lamps, furniture and other items placed around the family room.

We strangely didn’t see a lot of sketchy people outside during out drive, but that doesn’t mean that they weren’t there.  Our whole drive lasted for maybe just over two and half hours, but we learned a lot, laughed a lot and add this to our many drive arounds.  If it wasn’t raining earlier in the day, we would’ve been out much earlier and probably saw a lot more to make fun of and talk about.  I’m not sure when we will have another drive around, but I’m pretty sure more things will be discovered, add to our list of adventures.  More to come I’m sure!

Henry Scott

THROWBACK THURSDAY (CAR)

1987 AUDI 5000CS TURBO

1987 AUDI 5000CS TURBO QUATTRO

With this type of vehicle, I usually saw middle age to older white individuals drive this around town. Anyone know different? Needless to say, I didn’t see much of this around my community in Maryland, but when I saw it in D.C. that is all I saw driving it.  So growing up with that type of complex and social parody, you automatically think that only white people can afford these type of cars.  Such a horrible way to be, but growing up in a place or community that thinks that way it rubs off on you.

1987 CHEVROLET CORVETTE

1987 CHEVROLET CORVETTE

The only time I saw this car around was when I would visit my late grandmother’s house in her NW Washington, D.C. neighborhood and play with my first cousins’ Barbie silver corvette when playing with certain girl toys wasn’t a taboo.  Don’t recall seeing this car alot, but I’m pretty sure some of you did.

1987 FORD MUSTANG GT

1987 FORD MUSTANG GT

You don’t see these around here much anymore, but some people are trying to keep the lifeline alive.  If you ask me I like the 1960’s style Mustang and if I was going to buy a Mustang in its current framework, I would want to get only the Shelby style.  If I am going for a muscle car I want all the whistles to go along with it.

Henry Scott

ADVENTURES OF D & T

ALBANY, NEW YORK

“CELLULAR PSYCHO”

Each and every Sunday, or at least once a week, we try to visit my wife’s mother and her step-father either for dinner or for other things to help them with.  Our Sundays over their house is usually uneventful, but on one particular Sunday, March 19, 2017, we had an event that would probably be engraved in our memories for a long time.  If you pay attention to the news, even if you don’t watch the news regularly, you at least know that most electronics are hackable and can be manipulated in one way shape of form.  This is my concern of us going all WiFi in our home and having to tend with our house becoming someone’s playground.  I’m very sacred about my home and people playing around with my sanctuary is not cool with me.  That is one thing that I am very protective of and if I am not aware of you coming to my home, you might get greeted with an attitude.

Anyways, going back to our normal Sunday dinners at my wife’s mothers’ house.  At this particular time of the incident, it’s just my wife, me and her mother watching NCAA Women’s Basketball (NC State vs Texas) when suddenly we here this high tone beeping beginning to bounce around inside the house.  All three of us start looking around very confused and at each other hoping someone would know what it was, but we had no idea what it was.  At the beginning we thought it was coming from near the dining room table, behind or near the china cabinet, but as we kept moving things around we never found the source.  We then started increasing our search to the family room, under the tables, in every corner of the first two rooms and then moved to the kitchen.  My wife thought it was maybe the oven or another electronic device in the kitchen before she told her mother it might be her alarm system going off.

We called to the downstairs apartment, where my wife’s uncle lives, and asked him was the alarm sounding downstairs, and he told us no.  So my mother-in-law got on the phone and started to speak to the alarm company about resetting the house alarm and having someone coming over to check the system.  As my mother-in-law was on the phone, my wife and I started check the bathroom, the other bedroom, checked the basement door, and her office.  In almost every room we checked, we could hear this awful high beeping continuing and getting louder and then suddenly quite down.  Even a few times the beeping stopped for a few seconds and began once again getting louder, continuing to bounce around the house.  At one point, we thought we had secured the sound in her parents bedroom and was very confident that we have located where the sound was coming from, but the challenge was to find what is the source.  We were so confident that we knew where it was coming from we told her mother it was coming from her bed, which is controlled by remote control.

Now, we began to search around the bed and when my wife moved one of the pillows it stopped, and when she moved the pillow again it started up again.  She even lifted up one side of the bed and I climbed underneath to unplug the entire bed and two lamps thinking this is it.  Well, we looked foolish when I unplugged the power strip from the wall and the beeping still didn’t stop.  Now, my wife and I are just about going nuts to figure out where is this beeping coming from, and if we don’t find this noise soon we may end up shutting off power to the whole house.  Each time I left the bedroom, and went out to the living room, I wouldn’t hear it except in her parents bedroom.  I did this at least a few times and thought it was settled, but when my wife came back out to the living room, the beeping noise started to bounce off the walls again.  OMG! THIS WAS DRIVING US NUTS!! Her mother thought it had stopped, but she doesn’t hear tones very well so we kept reminding her that no it hasn’t stopped!

We check the smoke detectors, nothing!  We checked the carbon monoxide detector and still nothing!  We tripled and quadrupled our efforts around the house and the beeping couldn’t be found, and with me partially deaf in my right ear, the tone wasn’t driving me crazy that way, but it was more so annoying.  Then finally, my wife went back into the first bedroom we checked and yelled to me that the noise is in there.  I went in there and closed the bedroom and the beeping got louder and seemed more condensed.  My wife, finally grabbed her phone from her hoodie pouch and stuck it up to her ear and finally located the source of the beeping.  She started to turn off the phone and restart it and the beeping noise started to stutter before coming to complete silence.  WHEW! We finally found the source of the issue, but now our concern was her phone hacked?  Her phone made this loud beeping noise that we have never heard before, and what made it so difficult to find was the screen was off and the noise kept bouncing around.

After at least thirty minutes of searching and driving ourselves completely crazy, the source of the beeping was eliminated and concerns of her phone being hacked was now our new concern.  Nothing has been found yet, but that was very weird and we are still tripping off that incident.  We just don’t know!

Henry Scott

SHOOTING STAR – PART III

“NEW SUN”

[FREDERICK, MD @ 06:05hrs – Local Time]

Jennifer is startled awake when a very low flying fighter jet flies overhead, which also causes the car to shake from the rumbles of the engines.  As her body jumps from the sudden shock, Luther also starts to come out of his deep sleep followed by a painful moan.  She looks down at Luther and knows that moving him will be huge task, but it’s must if Jennifer wants to regain circulation in her legs.  As she starts to think about her plan to do so, either the same jet or another fighter jet flew overhead waking up Marcus and Brooke.

“What’s going on?” Brooke mumbles in her tired painful voice.

“I’m not sure, but I think I hear fighter jets above us.” Jennifer replies in a calm voice trying not to raise too much alarm.

Marcus responds in a low tone, “Fighter jets? Are they doing patrols?”

Jennifer turns her head to look at him as she reaches out to him to touch his hand, “They could be doing patrols, but they could also be searching for any unidentified objects or planes.”

“Unidentified objects? What do you mean by that? UFO’s?” Luther jumps in the conversation.

“Well, UFO mean unidentified flying objects and doesn’t necessarily mean alien aircraft’s either.”  Jennifer mutters in a condescending tone.

Brooke jumps in with her comments, “Do you know something Jen?”

Closes her eyes before responding to the question, “Usually fighter jets flying in the sky after a massive incident or blast is protocol to protect our airspace.” Releases a sigh anticipating more questions coming her way about the subject.

“I think my eye sight is starting to come back Jen.  I know the sun is out, not only I can feel it on my face, but I can see more light.” Turns towards Jennifer’s direction.

“Oh Marcus that is great! I hope things continue to improve.  How you feeling?” Jennifer responds with some enthusiasm.

Takes a swallow and then replies, “I’m getting feeling back in my legs it seems, but afraid to move right now.”

Luther responds, “At least you’ll be able to walk again, but I over here with one whole side fucked up!  Which brings me to another point, when are we getting the fuck out of here.”

Jennifer looks down at Luther and replies, “Well, one I can’t move because I have no feelings in my legs, and second, walking through the grass may allow the radiation to attach to us.  Not to mention what we may have already breathed in.”

“Radiation? Isn’t that what the rain does?” Brooke speaks in a concerned tone.

“All the rain did was clean the air of any impuritents, but the bad thing is that is has all settled on the ground.  Finding food and water needs to be one of our main priorities besides medical treatment.” Jennifer replies to Brooke, but meant for everyone.

“So what I need to do is get out, go get help or at least find transportation for us to get the hell out of here.” Jennifer states and continues.  “That means I will have to move you Luther, which is going to hurt like shit! You’ll probably cuss me out later, but it needs to be done.”

“What do you need me to do?” Luther replies to Jennifer.

Jennifer quickly gives him instructions, “I will need you to roll over to your right and hold it until I am from underneath you.  Are you ready?”

Luther takes a huge gulp of saliva before answering and completing the task, “Yeah! Ready…1…2…3 (followed by a painful grunt)!”  As Luther rolls over to his right and struggles to hold it, Jennifer wishing for quick feelings in her legs so she can make a hasty getaway.  Which probably felt like forever for Luther, once he knew that Jennifer was out of the car he let his body flop back down and yelled out in agony.

After Jennifer crawled herself through the driver side window, she peeps back into the car, “I’m going to go find us some help and find a way out of here for us.” Looks at Marcus and rubs his head full of hair, “I’ll be back!” When Marcus’s reaches for her hand and touches it before she jets out of there.  With Jennifer gone for help Marcus, Luther and Brooke are all left alone in suspense waiting for her return, if she ever does return.

“You think she’ll be back for us? You think she’ll make it back?” Brooke speaks in a worried tone.

Marcus responds in great defense, “She’ll be back for us.  She won’t leave us here.”

“I think what Brooke is getting at is if she doesn’t return, how will we know when to defend for ourselves and know that she’s not coming back; or travelled a long way for help?” Luther intercepts the moral of hope with his negative thoughts.

“I honestly don’t know, but I know we have to focus on the positive and keep faith that she’ll succeed in finding us help.”  Marcus responds in a positive voice.

Jennifer limps her way down the steep hill back to the main road and stops in the middle deciding which way to go.  Should she head towards town or the opposite way to hopefully see someone that would be willing to help her friends out.  After a painstaking decision process, she decides to limp her way in the opposite direction and take a chance.  Limping her way down the road drained numerous amounts of energy and had to rest every couple of minutes.  During one of her breaks, she heard in the long distance a fighter jet overhead, but doesn’t know where it’s coming from.  As she looks up, using her hand to block some of the sunlight, she finally sees the sunlight reflecting off of the jet as it appears to be circling around the area.  While she looks up at the fighter jet circling and following it with her eyes, it suddenly takes off towards the west as the flames from the engine could be seen.  Only a few seconds past until the roaring sound of the jet engines faded away and it couldn’t be seen any more above.

Disappointment overcame her and left her dejected for a brief moment, but she knew she couldn’t rest.  Jennifer gets herself back up and continues down the road in the same direction, limping away.  Approximately, a mile down the road she turns around to see how far she has come, and she recognizes she’s gone a good way.  Continuing down the road about another ½ mile and she sees a car on the side of the road with someone in it.  Jennifer waves her arms to see if the person can see her, but with no response.  Creeping closer and closer to the car, it appears that the person inside might be sleeping, but she’s not completely sure.  Slowly making her way towards the vehicle, the person she sees in slumped over in the driver seat.  Not sure if it is a man or a woman, when she gets up to the driver side door she knocks on the window.  Still no response.  She then convinces herself to open the door, very slowly, and tap the person on the shoulder.  When she opens the door, the body slowly leans out the car and falls to the ground.  The stench of death hit her nose and nearly made her puke on the deceased person.

Regaining her composure was some work, but Jennifer was able to do so.  Now, her mission is to get back to her friends and get them some help.  Stepping over the body she gets into the driver seat and reaches for the ignition, no key is there.  Jennifer looks down at the dead person and immediately looks into the side pockets with one luck to find the keys.  She finds a set of keys and pulls them out of the pocket to discover numerous keys on the on the key ring of gold and silver.  Confusion comes over her expression as she tries to figure out what the hell are the keys for, but finds the car key.  Jennifer slowly sticks it in the ignition and turns the key.  After a few seconds of the starter trying to catch, it catches and brings her immediate joy.  What made it even better was when she notices that it was full of gas.  Yelling inside the car at the top of her lungs with happiness, she puts the car in drive, closes the door and takes off towards her friends.

Marcus kept dozing in and out of sleep, but wakes up when he hears a car engine racing towards them.  “Hey guys?! I think I hear Jennifer coming back!” stating in his joyous voice.

She starts to honk the horn repeatedly as she was coming up the hill towards them.  Pulling up next to the car she yells at them, “LET’S GO! I FOUND US A RIDE!”  Jumping out of the car and runs over to them, “You guys ready? I’m here to get you out of here!”

“Brooke doubted you the whole time.” Marcus states to Jennifer.

“WHAT?!” Brooke shouts, but realizes he was just kidding when he started laughing.

“You guys!” Jennifer smiles as she prepares to move Luther.

For several minutes moving them from the metal shelter to another drivable car was a task, but Jennifer was able to do it.  Once everyone was inside and able to have more room, Jennifer guns it back down the hill towards the main road.  This time she goes back towards the town, and her eagerness is shown in her speed.  After going around a few turns and within a mile from the town limits, she sees a military vehicle blocking the road.  Pressing hard on the brakes, she comes to a complete stop jolting everyone in the car.  Waiting for someone to pop out in full military gear, Jennifer starts to think of how she might be able to get out of this situation.  As she thinks to herself of what to do, Luther breaks the silence, disrupting her brain waves, “No one is around.  Maybe we can go around.”  Jennifer looks back at him and nods in agreement and slowly moves toward the military vehicle with no resistance.  Just enough room was allowed for her to pass around to continue towards the town.  To their surprise no one is around and they continued.  Suddenly, anxiety starts to fill their stomachs as they creep closer towards the town, but once again their progress was stopped by numerous cars and debris blocking every path.  They all look at each other as if they were telling each other by mental speech that things will only continue to become more real.

[MANAUS, BRAZIL @ ONE HOUR LATER]

As the fires rage untouched in the Amazon Rainforest, wild animals and natural resources continue to be in danger of being extinct.  All this is unknown to the five-year-old, who was discovered by another person dressed up in a chemical suit.  Several hours later, as he is sleeping in his sleeping bag on the wooden floor, the weight of the child wakes him up.  Suddenly, he sees himself eye to eye with a beautiful grey-eyed child staring back at him.  As they stare at each other, he breaks his straight face with a smile, which is followed by a smile from the child.  They start laughing together and he begins to tickle the child, who just falls all to pieces with hard joyous laughter and smiles.  He continues to tickle the child until the child can’t stand it anymore and takes off running into another room.

He gets up and chases the child into the room where he continues to tickle the stomach and legs.  A minute later, when he stops the child and he is on his knees, the child stands up and stares at him again.  They start speaking in Latin to each other, and at the end of the conversation, the child goes over into a corner and grabs a gun.  Thinking it is a toy gun and oblivious to the dangers, points it at the man who freaks out and snatches it from the child.  He starts to scold the child in Latin for handling a gun, but got interrupted by a loud noise outside the shed.  He becomes silent quickly for a minute and goes over to the window in the direction he heard the noise.  Looking outside he could see two people, who looked to be covered in ash, dust and soaking wet, digging in garbage scrapping for food.  He looks down at the child and tells her to stay put, and surprisingly she does.

He goes back to his room to grab his other handgun fully loaded and goes outside to confront the two individuals.  As they make their way stumbling, coughing and hacking, they see him standing there staring at them.  Both of the sickly men look at him and at each other before opening a dialogue in Latin, asking for food and water.  The man responds back telling them he doesn’t have enough to give out, they look at each other and begin to grin.  They ask once more and he refuses to comply.  Both the men start making their way towards the man as if they were going to cause him harm.  Seeing how bad they look and knowing that they have been out in the black rain, he raises his gun and points it at them.  Freezing in position seeing a gun pointed at them, the man takes two steps towards them and speaks a few words in Latin before opening fire.  Striking both men in the chest, they fall to the ground in obvious pain and agony.  The man walks up to each one, speaks more Latin words, and finishes them off with a bullet in their brain.  After neutralizing the sickly men, he drags their bodies over to a pile of wood in the back of his shed, throws them in the pile and sets the pile on fire.

As the bodies and wood burn into the air, the child comes outside and stands next to him.  He looks down and sees the child grab his hand and hold on to it staring into the fire.  Not sure if the child understands what she sees, he doesn’t quickly remove her from the situation, but what he doesn’t know is that she witnessed the murder of the two men.  This would be a secret she would keep to herself for many years to come.

END OF PART III

(Next Publication @ April 1, 2017 – Part IV)

THROWBACK THURSDAY (CAR)

1987 ACURA INTEGRA

1987 ACURA INTEGRA

How many people of their early twenties and teen years have heard of this vehicle, let alone seen it?  Well, I think a number of us in our thirties and older, maybe even people in their late twenties, have heard of this vehicle and actually seen it.  Going through my high school years, between 1993-1997, I knew of a few people that actually made it their mission to go out and buy this car.  I never really had much interest in this type of car since it was a two door and it seemed like every young black person I knew would have this as their car at one point.  A friend, who lived at the cul-de-sac in our neighborhood, owned a nice gold one, which only seemed to be owned by a lot of young black men with tinted windows, and with his driving style ended up wrecking it. Of course, other versions came out into the nineties.

I wonder how many of you remember owning one, knew someone who owned one and always wanted one, but never got it?

Henry Scott

THE CRAB DIARIES: CROSSROADS

UMPD BLUES

Every city and town have their hot spots, and in those cities and towns you need to have a special way to deal with those issues.  When you are speaking of the city of College Park, I am referring to the intersection of Knox Road and Route One.  Route One being a major thoroughfare that travels north and south and Knox Road being a local road traveling east and west.  At or near this corner we had four to five bars that was always hoping and full of people, and being in a college town underage drinking was definitely going on.  When we would respond to alcohol poisonings later in the evening, you could almost automatically assume that the underage assumption was being done at one of this bars.

I can’t count the number of times when we would respond to fights, disturbances, robberies and once in a while shootings at or near this particular intersection in the city.  Hell, we would have officers posted across the street from two bars and around the corner at the Bank of America; us and county police.  Even with our presence there in the area shit would still kick off as if we weren’t around.  I can remember at one point, while on field training, I approached the intersection and a fight broke out in the middle of the street on Route One.  As my FTO and I rushed out of the car to break up the fight, it spilled back on to the sidewalk in front of the Cornerstone Grill and Bar establishment.

While my FTO was in the middle of this melee that kept growing, I went in to get people from behind him and saw a person just turn around to throw a punch.  Thank God he missed because he didn’t look to see who it was and I felt the breeze of his fist go right by my head; it was a blur for real.  It was at that point I learned that jumping into the middle of a fight, while it is going on, is ABSOLUTELY not a good idea.  We’ve had officers get hit in the head with beer bottles and physically assaulted themselves jumping into active fights.  So when attempting to going to break up a physical altercation between two or more individuals, make sure you use your head and don’t just jump in.  You head might get used as a punching bag!

This same area was also known for a hot spot for property being destroyed and damaged due to riots after Maryland-Duke basketball games; or for whatever other reasons students and residents decided to cause mayhem.  Within the last couple of years of my time there, we were also responding to shootings, which began to increase all over the area.  Many foot chases began here in this area, vehicle pursuits sometimes would begin in this location, DUI arrest were prevalent and at one point most of our criminal arrest and citations were in this exact area.  Fake ID’s were a big violation for a period along with bouncers having warrants and allowing some of the underage students, especially girls, into the bars.  I’ve had beer bottles thrown at me from beer balconies and found myself patrolling the area with a FN303 (Pepper Ball Gun – Less Than Lethal) when shit got that out of control.

When the WAWA was there, a convenient store, that just added to the problems especially when fights broke out in the College Park Shopping Center, which was adjacent to Knox Road and Route One.  Many strong arm and armed robberies occurred in this plaza and almost every time our suspects would dart towards the D.C. Metro station that was located only couple miles away.  Alot of the knuckleheads and criminals would use the metro station as their mode of transportation, but it would appear that later on they smarten up and find other ways to penetrate and exit the area.  We would just have to adjust to the times of new ways as they would adjust to our way of doing law enforcement.  If you was the officer that had to patrol this part of the city, especially at night, most of your time would be trying to be proactive to anything to happen, but wouldn’t always happen.

We had certain county officers we could count on for responses and back up, but others would just watch us from across the street or not respond at all.  Needless to say our relationship with the county police was strained at times and excellent at others just like international allies.  After the WAWA was stripped from the area due to financial loses it couldn’t make up, our call volume in the area dropped tremendously, but we still had the 7-11 across the street.  Not too many issues happened there because our presence was heavy there just waiting for things to kick off, which you can almost count on every Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  Seeing the Walk of Shame was also prevalent in this area and telling the girls not to walk alone back to their dorms seemed like it fell on deaf ears a lot.  This is also the same area we would find students and residents alike passed out in the Chapel Field down the road, and some of them were women or girls not wearing any undergarments.  Not a good site to see especially when she is passed out and not aware of the world around them.

This is also the area where a college student got beat by unknown officers in riot gear, which was caught on surveillance camera.  That incident caused a huge ruckus and was over and down with prior to our agency getting to the area to supplement them in our riot gear.  Flying through this area at over 100 mph during a chase was scary and nerve wrecking as you was always afraid of someone not paying attention before entering the lanes of traffic on Route One.  I was actually surprised not too many people got hit by traffic flowing through there as much as foot traffic flooded the area.  However, when the Bank of America got robbed or was being robbed you think the county police told us? Umm..no! I happen to find out by listening to the scanner after it was all said and done, but I’m pretty sure some of our superiors knew.

It goes without saying too much or going too much into it that every night you worked in the city, you never knew what Route One and Knox Road was going to bring you.  Some nights it was uneventful, but other nights you couldn’t leave that place without shit happening.  “Knox and One” is what our code name for it was and you knew if it was going to be a good night or a bad night depending on the issues there.  However, this wasn’t the only place where our headaches were, but a good portion of our stresses was from this area.

TODAY’S SPECIAL DAY

HAPPY

BIRTHDAY

NATASHA SCOTT FRANKLIN!!

I want to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my Queen and Best Friend, Mrs. Franklin, who have been blessed to be with us for at least 34 years! Throughout all that we have been through, and continue to go through, you have remained the same and have never wavered.  I hope to see many more birthdays with you and that we continue to grow and get stronger as time around us become more uncertain and less reliable.

Love,

Hubby