Monday, February 18, 2013

The Long Arm of the Law

Another story that I wrote for the Working Border Collie Magazine
The Long Arm of the Law - May 2005
by Diane Pagel

 Having been in the rural scene for a bit, one does forget that city folks have a different perspective on things. Like really different. Plus, no sense of humor.

A few years ago, I had to go to court. The court day arrives and I stroll into the entry where everyone has to go through a metal detector. I drop my large purse onto the tray to go through the x-ray machine and I pass through the metal detector and wait on the other side for my purse.

Two deputy sheriffs approach me and ask me to step aside with them. So I comply.  Not that I have a choice or anything. My purse is open and a women deputy is sitting next to it. 

She asks, “Madam, what is this?”, as she pulls the hoof trimmers out of my purse.

I recognize them immediately as my orange hoof trimmers that I have misplaced and quickly reply “My hoof trimmers”.

Noticing the looks of bewilderment of the three deputies I explain that I have a sheep farm and I use them to trim the sheep hooves. I go on to explain that I have sheep in a field not too close to my house, and I had trimmed their hooves just recently and had put the trimmers in my purse to bring home, otherwise they would just get lost in the truck.

 They seem satisfied with my answer and put the trimmers aside and tell me that after they are done, I have to take them out and leave them in my truck, as they are considered a dangerous weapon. Apparently my skills as a hoof trimmer have reached their ears!!

Next, the female deputy pulls out another large metal object from my purse.  At this point, I realize that I might be in trouble. It is the bander. All three deputies look at me and I softly say “It is a bander.”

Well, the female deputy smiles and I know she knows what it is used for and she says “Ok, you need to put this in your truck too”.

Not happy with the nonchalant response from the female deputy, one of the two male deputies, ‘Deputy Smith’, grabs the bander and holds it up and asks, loudly so everyone within 20 feet all turns around and stares, “What is this?”

“It’s a bander” I answer in a quiet voice. The female deputy has a sly grin.

“What? Speak up. What is it?” he demands as he waves it around.

“It’ a bander” as I reply in a louder voice.

“What is that? What do you use it for?” he demands.

By this time we have a good audience since most of the crowd is of the farming community. The second male deputy wisely keeps his mouth shut.

“I use it to band ram lambs” I tell him.

“What?  Please explain.” and he moves closer to me, holding it out to me.

Ok, by this time, I figure that I am in deep doo-doo and rummage around in my purse and pull out the green rubber bands. I just banded a bunch of ram lambs at the field at the same time I had done hoof trimming.

I take the bander from ‘Deputy Smith’, fit the rubber band on and open the device wide.  I turn and look and see that my audience is lined up behind me with smirks and the female deputy has her hand covering her mouth and a small giggle is escaping.

“You see, I put this on the little ram’s private parts and it neuters them. It cuts off circulation and their private parts fall off.”

 I am waving this around for full visual effect for the crowd. I figure if they are going to arrest me, might as well go out in style.

At this point, ‘Deputy Smith’, realizes exactly what this is for and turns a bright shade of red, the female deputy burst out laughing and a few giggles burst out from the crowd.

He is too stunned to say anything and I quickly grab my hoof trimmers and purse.

“I’ll be right back and will put these back in my truck. Life on the farm sure keeps me busy” I quickly say.

 I race out and quickly deposit the trimmers and bander into the truck. I also take out the Leatherman and anything else that is farm related.

I go back in and am told that I have to go through the metal detector again and the purse has to be run through again. I notice that ‘Deputy Smith’ is gone and the remaining male and female deputies are smiling broadly at me.

“Got anything else we should know about?” she asks me.

“Nope, it’s all ok now” I state. I smile at both hoping that I am not in too much trouble.

 The other male deputy motions me over and whispers to me so he, the female deputy and I are the only ones that can hear what he has to say.

“He’s a city boy”. We all smile that knowing smile at each other.

1 comment:

geonni banner said...

OK. Great story, but I must protest that city folk are not the only ones who lack a sense of humor at times. Hence:
A Different Perspective
I live in the East (San Francisco) Bay, which automatically gives me the reputation of being a “granola person.” (Everything that ain’t fruits or nuts is flakes.)
I have a number of friends in a group called the SCA. Wikipedia says, “The Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA) is an international living history group with the aim of studying and recreating mainly Medieval European cultures and their histories before the 17th century. This is a bunch of (usually) gainfully employed geek types who like to, among other things, dress up in armor and bash away at each other with rattan or even real swords.
I once lived in an SCA house in the Richmond hills, and although I wasn’t much involved in the SCA, I enjoyed watching fight practice on the front lawn every Wednesday and found the whole enterprise vastly entertaining.
Once or twice a year they would pile all their re-enactment gear into station wagons, SUVs, sedans and other modern vehicles and go off to fight wars with each other.
On one such occasion they were travelling through a sparsely populated region of Arizona in a motley assortment of vehicles, when they were pulled over by an Arizona Highway Patrol officer. This lawman took one look at the obviously miscreant crew with their long hair, outlandish garb, and California tags and ID and thought he was about to make the bust of a lifetime.
This protector of the peace began to search the cars. He rummaged through all the accoutrements of medieval life with great diligence and thoroughness. Finally he opened the trunk of the last vehicle. He shoved aside swords, daggers, maces, morning stars, longbows, crossbows and all sorts of other weapons large and small, when at last he found that which justified his perseverance. Eagerly he lifted the dreadful object and brandished it at the band of criminals he had captured.
“Now I’ve got you!” he exulted. “I know what these are! These are them deadly num-chucks! These here are illegal in Arizona. You’re comin’ down to the station with me!”
Tucking his trophy under his arm, he instructed the group of perpetrators to follow him into town where they would be charged with possession of dangerous and illegal weapons. The miscreants meekly followed him and were presently marched into the station and arrayed before the officer’s captain. The officer displayed his find with obvious pride, and unfolded the tale of finding the dreadful object after an exhaustive search.
The captain, however, seemed unimpressed. He sighed and swept a withering glance over his subordinate. Turning his gaze to a member of the rank of young people that stood before him, he said, “Son, I’d like to have a look at your vehicles.” The young man quietly assented, and the group filed out to the parking lot with the captain bringing up the rear. The cars were given a cursory inspection. The captain’s eyebrows were occasionally elevated, but he made no comment. At last the trunk where the “deadly num-chucks” had been discovered was opened. The Arizona sun gleamed on the scabbards of half a dozen swords, several helmets and other steel, wood and leather pieces of the gear of ersatz war.
The captain, who had taken possession of the officer’s trophy, held it up and asked one of the group, “Sir, what is this?”
“It’s a camp-stool.” replied the young man.
He then reached into the trunk, he removed a three-cornered slab of tooled leather with pockets at each corner. He explained that the three wooden legs, fastened together at the center, opened to form a tripod, the ends of which fitted into the corner pockets of the leather triangle to create a comfortable seat that remained steady, even on uneven ground.
The captain sighed a long and weary sigh. He handed over the legs of the camp stool and said, “You are free to go. My apologies for your inconvenience.”