If they burn me at the stake so be it …
Quite a few moons ago …
I was driving back in the early hours of the morning following a good friend ( actually a VERY good friend) in, as fate would have it, his Ford Fiesta. We were close to the London HILTON, Park Lane where we came across a police Panda. Needless to say he was stopped; stopped for 'driving whilst hanging out of the driver's door and waving at the car behind'. I parked on the other side of the road. The boys in blue were so gobsmacked as to how someone in his condition could actually get behind the wheel of a car, let alone drive, that one of them came over and, still shaking from disbelief, was in the process negotiating a safe form of passage with me, whilst 'B', as he will be referred to from now on, couldn't quite adopt a marginally penitent attitude with the other. His only response to the cops request to ' get out of the car ' was to tell them to 'f*** off ' - not once but thrice.
As he sat in the back of the Rover - nicked - no amount of friendly exchange was going to circumvent the 'trip to the nick' - not even his articulate ' Who do these punks think they are … ? '
He got driven, I drove, to Vine Street police station, Soho. No longer exists but it was, as most of these old London house were, extremely narrow with an impossibly steep staircase. Such was B's underlying good nature, that the cops disposition, by this time, had gone from disbelief to a rather more humorous take on the whole episode. Nevertheless the visit by the police doctor was indeed inevitable. The 'interview rooms were on the first floor, I was on the ground floor, at the base of the staircase.
The doctor turned out to be a barrel of a woman. As tall as she was wide (with a sense of humour to match). Now, what follows I didn't witness first hand - but the police did.
Doc enters the room, and finds B siting calmly in a chair, against the wall, next to a table. Doc approaches and instructs B to empty all his pockets on said table. Out came the keys, cigarettes, wallet and a multitude of god-knows-what items. Doc approaches, picks up all the items and proceeds to lay them all out, in a square, on the floor, in the middle of the room. B sits calmly, silently, just watching her.
Doc then approaches B, looks him in the eyes, and says in a calm, soft and controlled voice 'Now, I want you to stand up and pick all these items up'. B' s eyes widen slightly, a somewhat surprised even incredulous look comes across his face, his head cocked in disbelief, pauses and then replies" 'Me ? ... Me ? You put them there you silly bitch, you pick them up !"
The cops, literally, fell down the staircase, one over the other, in hysterics. It took a good 10 minutes for the mirth to subside. No exaggeration, NADA. One of them was laughing so hard she even had tears rolling down her cheeks . By this time it was 05:00 in the morning, I had work and wasn't going to nanny him to Bow Street Magistrates Court at 10:00. They took him to court directly …
The rest I'll let him tell you in person one day - he lives in Arta, Mallorca.
These antics are long gone. NO, he got spared jail, just - and before anyone comes back at me over this anecdote - this was then , I don't condone drink driving in any way, don't drink or indulge in illegal substances either.
And to complete the picture, BTW, he was also the only person to grab John Conteh by the neck and threaten to thump him! For those who don't know who John Conteh was, here's a link ..http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Conteh