I truly believe it’s your civic duty to help out your local police department any which way you can...or is it any which way but loose?
Anyway, for example, this one time, I saw this out-of-control truck striking vehicles along the roadway, nearly taking out my rearview side mirror (or side rearview mirror?) and continuing on the road with no regard for the safety of motorists or pedestrians.
When the traffic started moving again, I noticed a police officer taking a statement from someone near two crashed vehicles. I parked, approached the officer and told him that if he needed me as a witness, I’ll gladly say in court, under oath, that I saw the tan pickup truck occupied by a male, female and orangutan barreling down the road.
“You mean the red Chevy Sonic crashed behind me with the male driver who admitted to reckless driving and is now in custody?”
“Sorry, officer, I just watched ‘Any Which Way You Can’, and that movie really stays with me,” I said. “Or was it ‘Any Which Way But Loose’?”
So, that story puts me in the perfect position to answer the call of the Kutztown Police Department and their search for drunkards as that Pennsylvania police department recently posted on social media their need for three volunteers to drink hard liquor to the point of inebriation.
Now, I’ve heard of police relying on the public to help them solve cases or find fugitives by being their eyes and ears in the community, but this was the first time I heard of a police department relying on the public’s livers.
The idea is for officers to be trained on how to administer field sobriety tests for suspected DUI traffic stops as the police department will provide the liquor, but no compensation, which is an oxymoron if I ever heard one.
However, there are some requirements a volunteer must have to participate in drinking hard liquor in the cradle of the law.
First, a volunteer has to be between the age of 25 and 40 and in good health, which I do qualify for the 40 part and after a few drinks, your cholesterol and blood pressure count are just numbers between friends.
Second, a volunteer must have no history of drug or alcohol abuse, but that’s pretty subjective. What one would call “abuse,” others would call playful butt-slapping during a football game at a local sports bar from which you suddenly find yourself banned for life.
A volunteer must have a clean criminal history, which I believe is another oxymoron unless you count those folks who committed various misdemeanors for polishing public property without a license.
Finally, a volunteer must have a sober, responsible person drive them home, and I’m pretty sure the phrase, “My kid just has a learner’s permit, but I’ll be in car the whole time” probably won’t cut it.
Despite all those rigorous requirements, the police department responded on their Facebook page that they received an overwhelming response, but were able to fill the positions and will be contacted by the department’s chief, Craig Summers.
The following is my open letter to the chief:
“Dear Chief Summers, I hope this column reaches you before your call to volunteers for an upcoming training session — not the one for volunteers to take a blast of pepper spray or take part in a jailhouse delousing, but the one for drinking alcohol because I need to write a follow up to this column because I’m running out of ideas.
“I figure taking part in the session will give me about a month’s worth of material and a lifetime of drinking stories to tell at local sports bars from where I have yet to be banned.
“If not for the material, just let me participate as a consultant as I’ve encountered many drunks in my day and have walked among them and can provide valuable insight — I can be like your Dr. Hannibal Lecter and say stuff like, ‘It appears that our Billy has consumed approximately 252 ounces of Old Milwaukee’s Best Light along with a meat-lover’s pizza judging by the scent of his belches and crumbs on his shirt and ramblings on calling his ex-girlfriend Vicky. Yes, what do you hear, Billy, when the bartenders announce last call? Do you hear the groans of the patrons or the silence of the jukebox?’
“Or invite me in as an observer — I don’t care, i just want to be a part of this thing and would be pleased if you can make it happen any which way you can...or even any which way but loose.”
According to Hofmann is written by staff reporter Mark Hofmann of Rostraver Township. His book, “Stupid Brain,” is available for purchase on Amazon.com.