Friday, June 19, 2015
Sunday, May 11, 2014
So, for all you moms out there:
Thursday, March 06, 2014
Saturday, April 20, 2013
Lori was a sassy little brunette from a small town in western Tennessee. She had a floral tattoo on her hip, and a twang in her voice that wandered between trashy and charming. She wasn't the prettiest hooker I ever met, or the funniest, or the most seductive. She was my first, and so, nearly twenty years later, I still remember her. I'm a middle aged man now, and I understand that just about all of my memories are colored by either nostalgia or regret, but I swear I'll tell you this story as honestly as I can.
I don't mean to give the impression that I made a habit of buying sex from prostitutes. True, I've spent time with plenty of girls over the years, but I've only ever tried to buy sex from a few of them.
Let me back up for a minute. You know I'm a cop right? Or, at least I was when this happened. I just realized I was about to turn this into an elaborate shaggy dog story, only with prostitutes instead of shaggy dogs. Let me clarify: my first experience with a prostitute was also my first experience doing any kind of undercover work.
My encounter with Lori didn't come about because of some clever investigation on my part. It was because a Chicago Police detective called us to let us know an escort service was working in our town. In the motel directly across the street from the police station.
My partner and I got excited, because, you know, prostitutes across the street from the police station! We jumped at the opportunity to work on something that night other than bad check cases. I called the number and found out that a massage cost $80, and the girl would be available for one hour. I gave my name as "Sam" and made an appointment. I had no idea why I used the name "Sam." I mean, really, why not use my real name? At least I managed, in spite of my inexperience, to not ask over the phone how much the sex would cost.
So, I was tasked with the job of posing as a john. How would I do this? I tried to remember every war story I ever heard from every Chicago vice cop I'd ever been drinking with. I knew the prostitute had to be the one to offer sex for money. I was nervous, and so I decided to build on that. I created an elaborate backstory for my encounter. I would be a high school guidance counselor who had never done this kind of thing before. I would have a pregnant wife at home and I would be a perfect square. Or at least the kind of nerdy, sexually creepy square who'd be trying to get off with a prostitute at the Travelodge at eleven o'clock on a Sunday night.
We came up with a plan. I'd leave a cell phone line open so my backup could hear what was going on in the room. Once the girl said the necessary words, I'd exclaim, loudly, "Oh yeah, that's great" and the arrest team would swoop in. I was afraid that the girl would have someone with her and I'd get rolled once the door closed behind me. I was nearly as afraid that she'd take one look at me and say, COP, and that would end it.
Lori answered the door in a sheer lace teddy and a short red silk robe. "High" she said, only it sounded like "hah." "Sam?" "Yeah, I'm Sam!" I walked in and I could feel a bad case of flop sweat forming at my temples, neck and armpits. Without a badge, radio, or gun I suddenly felt more vulnerable in the presence of this petite woman than I'd ever felt.
"Relax baby, you seem nervous." She had no idea.
We made some small talk and confirmed that the price for a massage was $80. Lori asked if I was a cop. No, I said, I'm a guidance counselor, why? Just asking, she said. I asked if there were other services, and Lori said to go on and get undressed. "Ah cain't talk about anything else if you got your pants on baby."
I was wearing a v-neck sweater, a black tee shirt, jeans, and Chuck Taylors. Lori perched on the bed, a little nipple showing through the teddy, feet tucked up under her butt. I started to freak out.
I took off my sweater. Lori sat there, regarding me with a knowing half smile. I took off my Chuck Taylors. I took off my black tee shirt. Lori didn't move. I unbuckled my belt. I opened the button of my jeans, and undid the zipper. I took a breath. I opened my jeans and began to slide them down past my thighs, exposing my underwear.
The instant the waistband of my jeans cleared my junk Lori spoke:
"$140 for a blowjob, $200 for straight sex or anything else."
I found out later those prices were inflated. Lori had made me as an easy mark.
I need to mention underwear here. Not hers, mine. My bride, having a lovely sense of humor, has always enjoyed gifting me with novelty underwear. As luck would have it, that night I was wearing some--a set of silk boxer shorts bearing Dr. Seuss' "Green Eggs and Ham" characters. That's right. I unconsciously chose the undercover name "Sam" because I was wearing Green Eggs and Ham boxer shorts on which a cartoon character proclaimed "I am Sam. Sam I am."
Time to give the bust signal. "Oh, yeah, that's great!" I said. Lori looked at me, smiled, and patted the bed next to her. "Come on baby." "Oh yeah, that's great," I repeated, louder. I paused. Lori stared. "Oh yeah, that's GREAT" I called out. The cell phone had shut off and no one outside could hear a damn thing. My jeans had fallen down below my knees. I had to do something.
"Ok, I have to tell you this, I'm a police officer. You're under arrest." "THE FUCK YOU ARE." Lori bounced up and rolled toward the opposite side of the bed. I waddled after her, trying simultaneously to hitch up my pants while grabbing desperately at the retreating sex worker with my free hand. "I really am a cop" I yelled.
I managed to grab Lori, who was now shrieking for help herself, and pulled her back from the nightstand drawer she'd opened. There was a can of pepper spray inside. Back up officers rushed into the room and handcuffed her. 'Fuck, you are a cop?!" Yes, I told her. Yes I am. Lori took a deep breath and exhaled, like she was deflating. She started to shake.
"I thought you were just some crazy asshole."
We searched the room. We found some lingerie, a pair of high heels, and 36 condoms. I was relieved that she'd left her gun, a little Beretta .22, in the glove box of her car, parked outside. Lori said she carried it for protection while she was on the road, and had forgotten to bring it inside that night.
Once we were back across the street, everyone calmed down and we talked. Lori was kind of a free spirit, and she was chatty. She wasn't too angry at me for arresting her, and I certainly didn't judge her for any choices she'd made either.
Lori had come up to Chicago and was working as an escort after some other "opportunities" didn't work out. Lori got a little of her flirt back, and assured me that she probably wouldn't have shot me--she would've just used the gun to scare me.
I left the booking room for a while, and when I came back Lori looked offended. "Your partner's trying to talk me into working in a titty bar" she said. "I was just saying it might be a little easier and safer than turning tricks in a motel, you know. And she's got the body for it."
"Knock it off" I said. My partner continued, leaning in, conspiratorially. "Come on Lori, be honest. Did Joe get all the way naked? Was he smooth and hairless? I've heard he has piercings..." "Oh, stop" said Lori, grinning now, and I swear she blushed a little.
Lori bonded out. Four months later she pleaded guilty to prostitution and took one year supervision. A couple months after that we arrested another girl from the same escort service. During the investigation the girl described Lori as a coke fiend who'd do just about anything for some blow. I think that girl just said those mean things because she was jealous.
As far as I know Lori never got arrested in Illinois again. Last I heard she was back in Union, Tennessee, and I wish her well.
Sunday, April 01, 2012
5 years, 11 months, and 25 days ago I started a blog to have some fun, reach out to people and entertain myself. Along the way I landed a blogging gig with ChicagoNow, and even got on the radio a few times. It's been a blast, and I can't thank you guys enough for reading, commenting and re-tweeting over the years..
Lately, though, I've felt something missing in my life. I realized that too much of my time and energy was being spent in what was, ultimately, a rather shallow series of clown jokes, stories about weenie-wavers, and self-satisfied crowing about how much I ate and drank. I've also become less satisfied with my career as a law enforcement officer. For some time now I've spent hours thinking about how I could better live a life of service, compared to the well-paid and complacent civil servant's life I now lead.
I have wrestled with both demons and Lincoln's "better angels" of my nature. And I have made a decision. A trip down south affected me in a profound, and I hope lasting, way.
This is my last blog post.
I have taken a leave of absence from my job, pending my retirement. I have purchased a used Dodge minivan and converted it to a makeshift camper. I had hoped to buy a mobile home in which to travel the shining gospel way, but it didn't work out.
On Monday I will be driving south to New Orleans where I will be joining a recently-formed street ministry, the Good News Living Statue Ministry. I ran into some of these folks during a trip to New Orleans, as several of them acted out the Stations of the Cross around Jackson Square. As I stumbled out of a nearby daiquiri stand and crashed into one of the soldiers scourging the Christ, I felt a profound sense of disorientation and longing, and knew I'd been truly touched.
The GNLSM ministers mostly to gutter punks, street performers and tourists in the French Quarter. They do so mainly by acting out various Gospel passages while spray-painted gold or silver, in the manner of many New Orleans street performers. I was moved by the depth and intensity of their devotion to the Gospel, as well as to the art of living statue performance. They are truly Godly people, and other than a brief (but ugly) confrontation with a group of traveling Clowns for Christ, I have found them to be beyond reproach. I have signed on to act as a fry cook and go-fer for the troupe until I "learn the ropes" as a living statue and New Testament reenactor.
My beautiful wife and children, while not fully comprehending my decision, are nevertheless pretty much supportive of it. They will remain here performing earthly duties such as bill payment and home maintenance while I carry out God's work down south. They are my rock.
Please pray for me, as I will for all of you. God bless you all!
Monday, February 27, 2012
Monday, May 30, 2011
"Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."
"That damned hero stuff is a bunch crap, I guess...You gotta understand that there's all kinds of heroes, but they never get a chance to be in a hero's position."
--John William Finn was the nation's oldest living Medal of Honor winner. He died on May 27, 2010.
Holidays like Memorial Day and Veteran's Day exist for a reason. It's not just a day off school or work, or an occasion to picnic. For years I have felt that our schools don't do a good job of teaching the history of the holiday, or imparting the proper sense of respect. Memorial Day, in particular, gets watered down into a broad, hazy day of remembrance. People need to understand that Memorial Day exists for the sole purpose of honoring our war dead.
There are many of them. Since November 2001, more than 209 Illinois citizens have died in combat. They came from all over the state, from varying backgrounds, men and women alike. What they all have in common is that they died in our service, and they are deserving of our deepest gratitude and respect.
Memorial Day was originally called "Decoration Day", and was first observed on May 30, 1868. It was first officially proclaimed by Commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, General John A. Logan. Yes, that's the same Logan that Logan Square and Logan Boulevard are named after.
Every year since 2000, there is a National Moment of Remembrance at 3pm. It's a good time to observe a moment of silence, or say a short prayer, both for our fallen and for the families they left behind.
If you want to be deeply humbled, or inspired, visit the website for the Congressional Medal of Honor, and read some of the citations.
For everyone who serves, or who has served, and to the families of all those men and women, I say thank you.
Saturday, May 28, 2011
"It's a tense situation when someone enters your home in a one-ton dump truck."-South Berwick, Maine Police Chief Dana Lajoie, referring to an incident in which 24-year-old Eli T. Hutchins crashed his Ford pickup truck into a condominium. Naked.
According to this story, Mr. Hutchins " drove over lawns and driveways until he hit the structure" after leaving another unit in the complex.
This brief piece from UPI.com gives us a little more insight, reporting that Mr. Hutchins left a nearby party after getting into a fight before embarking on his naked drive. During the fight, reportedly started by Hutchins, he was struck in the head with a hammer.
Alcohol was involved.
Sunday, May 22, 2011
The Blue Moon of Kentucky cocktail (serves 2):
In a cocktail shaker or large glass measuring cup:
-muddle ½ cup of blueberries with a ¼ cup of triple sec & a tablespoon of lemon juice. Let sit for 15 minutes (at least)
Add 1 ½ oz of blueberry schnapps (DeKuyper)
-Add 1/3 cup bourbon
-Strain, pour over ice in a tall glass, garnish with fresh blueberries and lemon peel