So nights can get a little boring when patrolling the Market Town of Maidstone in Kent in the late 1990’s, and various games were employed to keep ourselves awake during the long winter nights. One of them was a mash-up of spitball and tag, you take a big handful of paper towel, wet it in a puddle, and throw it at your colleagues cruiser as they go by. We had a few rules, you had to stay in the old part of town where the roads were really tight, especially with cars parked on both sides of the road, so there was no driving fast. Of course the other thing in this part of town was the very old maximum security prison with the 30 foot high walls, quite a spectacle to have in the middle of town, but it went with the older style roads in that part of town.
Sometimes, to fool the other cruiser, the ‘thrower’ would get out of the cruiser while the driver played dumb, like they didn’t see the approaching other cruiser, and lure them in to be ‘tagged’ by the hiding thrower tucked behind some parked cars. Luckily the only other vehicles around at that time of night was the milkman.
And while we are at it, those cruiser were not exactly stealth machines. Peugeot diesel sedans, horrible boxy things when I first joined up, the diesel noise gave it away long before you could be seen trying to sneak up on someone on those housing estates. Then from even longer away, the Peugeot headlamp assembly was pretty unique, and Peugeot was not a popular make in ___________, so any approaching Peugeot was presumed to be a cruiser. CID had some Pequots of different colors, but being the same make and model, were obviously unmarked police cars.
The other game we used to play, which had been banned by the power-that-be was ‘snooker’. For those who are not in the UK, snooker is similar to Pool, except that the table is much larger, there is alarge triangle of red balls, behind that a black ball, and infrom of the triangle an arrangement of other colors. the idea is you have to pot a red ball, then any color, which is then respotted in it’s origionating position, then another red, another color, until all the reds are gone, then you have to pot the colors in a particular order, with the black last. So the idea with cars is you have to stop a red car, then a colored, then another red…
So at the end of the month, you could run a computer query, and add up your scores, see who got the biggest ‘break’. Of course the poor girly girl who thought having a pink VW bug would have been stopped by every officer playing snooker, since pink is not a very common car color. Eventually the fun had to stop, and the powers that be put the kibosch on it.
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