It was after a Rocky Horror Picture Show. We were walking across the town, all dolled up in leather, tutus, makeshift toilet paper ascots, corsets, and Amanda Palmer stockings. We were all very drunk, but that’s why we were walking.
We were at the town’s campus’s student center, a large swath of concrete with flood lights pouring down on it, and woman who was with us hopped onto her husband’s back. The husband, being too drunk to carry this sudden weight, toppled to the ground, his wife scraping her chin against the pavement.
And FWOOMP! there were three campus cop cars on the scene. The cops saw the woman with a bleeding cut on her chin with her husband standing over her and made an assumption. They sat her down on a bench and examined her. Her husband tried to approach her, only to be warded off by this policewoman.
An ambulance was called, and a firetruck. The EMTs flashed their lights into her eyes, and put a bandage on her chin.
That’s when the trouble started. After the fact, the woman told us the EMTs gave her the impression that if she didn’t get to a hospital and get treatment IMMEDIATELY, SHE WAS IN DANGER OF GETTING IT INFECTED, AND DYING. The guy said the cops told him the ride to the ambulance would be free, an offer which enticed him because of his new-born baby and their skinny budget. It was bold-faced lie. Once the policewoman left the vehicle, the woman, who was now in the ambulance, somewhat against her drunken will, asked the EMT if she actually had to go to the hospital. The guy confessed that, no, if she disinfected it and put a butterfly stitch in it, she would be fine.
All of this happened in the middle of campus, with drunk cabals of freshmen wandering hither and thither to blackout drunkenness. We were all in costume, so we were kind of spectacle. Hoss told them to fuck off. Some asshole, staring with his friends, said he was looking at they “eye-candy” or whatever. It was rewarding to see Hoss in a tutu yelling at him to suck a dick.
After squabbling with the cops a bit, we got the information that if there was a car to take her home, she didn’t have to take the ambulance. We all started looking through our phone books for viable options to call at midnight. Hoss saw a couple walking on the sidewalk, two perfect strangers, and asked them if they had a car. They nodded, and he explained the situation to them. By Satan’s good fortune, they let the husband and wife ride in the back.
The cops lied to us. That ambulance ride would have put a serious dent in the couple’s finances. In a town where we drive past cops harassing houseless, where they are “mysteriously” absent from the street corners during the college’s football games, it was another moment of disillusionment.
And I leave you with a song from the Wingnut Dishwashers Union, “Fuck Every Cop“.