Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Call off the hounds, I'm back.

Returning from a nice long vacation, where I traveled to parts of the world that few ever think of visiting, I felt renewed, even happy to be back to work.

The natural cynicism of a big city copper meant when one got too much enjoyment out of something it had to break down, go bad, get ugly.

Tragedy struck the police family again and again, all around the country, Oakland, Seattle, Lakewood, Pittsburgh, heck everywhere, I suddenly felt my spirit go numb.

Going to work lost it's beauty.

This was a horrible experience.

The spirit, the beauty, of being a copper is what made it all worthwhile.

Every copper, deputy, officer, five oh, po po, detective, marshall, whatever you guys and girls call each other, knows what I mean.

The job can become a wicked ugly thing.

There has to be a sense of purpose, a love of the street, a craving for the adrenaline rush, for a good copper to survive the years and years of grief it takes to collect the pension.

Without a true love of the spirit and energy it takes to make the job the fulfilling vocation it should be, the evil can take over and ruin a copper's soul.

Fortunately, good friends, good coppers, and good sense revealed the demon to the light.

People noticed the Big City Copper blog was dormant. Questions where asked. "Where are you? Why are you so silent?"

You gotta love those friends that noticed these things and cared enough to say something.

I still love the job, just not so much any more.

The pension light is visible and not so far off in that tunnel.

I know now that I'm leaving the police world in 18 months or so. I'll be maxxed out in pension, wisdom, and spiritual effectiveness.

I'll miss it but health and sanity is a beautiful thing too.

For now though, I'm back.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A slow day

Every copper knows every day police work can be slow and filled with mundane tasks. That is what the big city copper has experienced since returning from vacation. Oh, the usual stuff goes on, like watching an SUV roll over trying to avoid the crash that was already blocking two lanes of traffic. The idiot barely looked up in time to avoid killing the responders already there. Like I said, every day stuff.

While most coppers are having a good day, others found the hands of fate needed to amuse themselves. Good honest officers found their fate in the hands of murderers. Lakewood, Washington followed closely by Pittsburgh Pa. had officers slain. There might even be more since I read the news last.

Is it a form of survivors guilt to feel bad? Being unable to attend the memorials of these guys saddened me. I sent a small token and prayers for the families instead.

I hope to continue having boring slow days.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Winter and fire safety

The onset of cold weather reminded the big city copper of some of the worst memories of a copper's experience. Fires.

True, the fire department does all the fire fighting and are the usual "heroes" but more times than not it is a copper or two that are the first to arrive and get involved.

One night two young coppers were responding to a disturbance in a large apartment building. They stepped off the elevator and into a smoked filled hallway. They turned the corner and saw a bucket of tar with a mop. Further on was an apartment door on fire with the flames spreading to the ceiling. Seeing flames spreading across a ceiling was a shock. There had to be ten apartments on this floor and the building was at least twenty stories high.

They put in the emergency call for help and began to pound on apartment doors. The tenants, realizing the danger , began to gather their families and head for the stairs. Several helped to warn their neighbors.

The sound of sirens announced the arrival of help. The coppers went to the top floor and pounded on doors. They assisted as many people as they could find. The fire spread rapidly so the coppers had to get out.

The street was filled with fire equipment, ambulances, and police cars. The coppers had saved a few lives by their quick reactions. They were exhausted and had breathed in smoke so were driven to the hospital to get checked out.

The fire and evacuation was intense but the real trauma was in the ER. The coppers were taken immediately. A nurse approached with the nastiest looking needle the copper had ever seen. "This might hurt a little" was an understatement. She inserted the needle into the coppers wrist to obtain arterial blood in order to check for carbon monoxide. She missed the artery and had to look for it by moving the needle around while in the wrist. The most intense pain the copper had ever felt almost made him vomit. The code prevented him from crying like a little girl especially since the screams from the next room were from the copper's female partner.

The nurse finally ended the torture and got her blood. The copper went and puked in private. The partner wept without embarrassment. They had done their job and saved some lives. The boss said nice job. No medals or accolades, just respect from the guys and girls on the watch.

The worst part of fire jobs was the casualties. The firemen find them and bring them out but coppers do the paper job and follow up.

Seeing fire victims on the clean white gurney at the morgue didn't make it any easier to do the job. In order to see a body burned beyond recognition or children burst open like plumper hot dogs, a copper needed to flip the switch that let him step out of his self and be the professional he needed to be. When a copper suppressed all emotion, the experience was fascinating. The smell wasn't any worse than burnt meat and burned beyond recognition really meant what it implied. Gender identification was visibly impossible but every muscle was clearly visible.

Thank goodness for the ability to suppress emotions.

Practice and preach fire safety.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Justice served.

Big city and small town coppers everywhere who are mourning our fallen heroes can rest a little easier today.

A fellow copper found the bastard who killed our brothers and sister and sent him to hell.

Now everyone knows the big city copper is all about ethics, morals, and justice but God fearing values meant nothing to the man that attacked our law enforcement family.

The families of the fallen wept.

A civil society demanded this evil not go unpunished.

The code of the street copper screamed for fierce reprisal.

We have prevailed.

Donations to the families are being taken on line at the Lakewood Police Independent Guild.
Please give generously. Support your L.E. family in their time of grief.


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