The Blotter Paper of the
Perhaps it's alienation and anomie brought on by the Age of Technology. Maybe it's a natural response to overcrowding or the apparent breakdown of close, personal bonds within the family and community. Whatever the cause the result is apparent: modern society is having a real problem problem-solving.
You have probably heard of the rage that seems to permeate our roadways and airlines these days but not everyone decides to take matters into their own hands. For a growing number of folks the best alternative to finding their own creative solutions is to call the police. This practice of calling law enforcement officers to solve simple, everyday problems is a growing trend all over the U.S. From large, impacted urban areas to working-class and upscale suburbs, to small rural towns, an increasing number of people are turning to the police to resolve everything from problems with their neighbors to, well, see for yourself:
The following items were taken directly from Police Blotters during the second week of October, 1998. The locations are irrelevant; it could be Anywhere, U.S.A.
Item: October 7
Uh, do you really need to call the police for this? As I see it you have a couple of other choices here. Number One: get your video camera out, film her acting like a maniac in public, and then mail the tape to her employer. Number Two: call you ex-husband and tell him to reel her in or you will tell his coworkers about his secret penchant for wearing rubber gloves and adult diapers during love-making. [Note: It does not matter whether this is true, the imagery is so good the result will be the same either way.] Number Three: Shut the windows, draw the curtains, and turn the stereo up.
Item: October 8
Ridiculous. Everyone knows that teenagers would never behave this way. This guy obviously just needs some attention. Volunteer at your local shelter or take up a hobby. And leave the police alone.
Item: October 7
Now apparently we as a society have really lost our creative problem-solving skills. This is a TELEPHONE, folks. Do we really need to file a police report? Next time try this novel approach: IGNORE IT.
Item: October 13
Can you spell "Insurance Fraud"? At least let's hope that's what this is. If not, this guy doesn't need the police. He needs a crash-course on Basic Living Skills. What person in their right mind would leave this sort of stuff in an unlocked vehicle in this day and age? This guy should have his belongings stolen just for being a moron. Someone this stupid doesn't deserve to have all that stuff.
Item: October 13
Leave him. Immediately. He needs Anger Management classes and YOU need to learn to distinguish between genuine personal endangerment and idle threats. Everyone knows that pot-smokers would never do anything to damage their gear.
Item: October 14
Forget the police sir, here's some creative problem-solving strategies: Number One, call a lock-smith. Number Two: have a giant garage sale and replace everything you own. Five break-ins and nothing was of value enough for burglars? It's time to upgrade.
We'll have to continue this later. There are several more items but I have to stop here and look up the phone number for the police station----the neighbor's cat just peed on my lawn.
Do YOU have a problem you would like help with? A number of readers have suggested I offer an advice section from time to time in my column. Screwed-up as the world is, I have decided to step up to the plate and do my part to help (smirk). Send me your problems, frustrations, or observations via email!
Disclaimer: All letters should be sent anonymously. It should be recognized that this is a totally irresponsible venture and therefore neither myself nor Mindjack are responsible for the consequences of any advice actually used.
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