When working night shifts surrounded by drunks, hookers, pimps, dealers and other assorted pillars of society, you had to make your own fun.
Sometimes it was writing a speeding ticket on a “pimpmobile” while it was double parked outside Bob’s Soul Food while the driver was picking up some food.
Other times it was just pretending to be a little crazier than you really were.
But once in a while it would come as a flash of inspiration.
At this time, the area surrounded by Beretania, Nuuanu, and Smith Streets was an open and metered City and County parking lot. It was poorly lighted and wide open so all sorts of things could and would happen there. The Smith Street parking lot, as it was called.
For many years the Honolulu Police Department used Harley Davidson “45 Flathead” motorcycles with a side-car or the “ice cream box” 3 wheel motorcycles to patrol the Hotel Street area and parts of Waikiki. These motorcycles could get around in traffic or even use the sidewalk if necessary. Often they could get places faster that a patrol car or a footman.
There was a little, very little, extra pay for being assigned to the bikes, but mostly it was an almost prestige thing. The area Sergeant had to request you and the Captain had to okay the assignment. As you could guess, it took me a while to get okay’d.
I loved those motorcycles. You could sneak around and if you were good, you could sneak up on people and cars.
One night toward the end of the watch I happened to see one of my favorite pimps Cadillac parked over in the back corner of the Smith Street lot, across from the Shamrock Bar. The Shamrock Bar was a well-known pimp hangout.
From my vantage point I could see there were two occupants in the front seat.
They appeared to be looking at something on the seat between them.
I parked the motorcycle and approached from behind. As I got closer I realized they were chopping a bit of cocaine on a small mirror.
Any amount of cocaine was a felony, but as it was 10:35 and I was almost done, I just walked up and rapped real hard on the window.
The pimp in the driver’s seat, JJ, took one look out the window, saw the uniform, and promptly dumped the mirror and the white powder on it, onto the white shag rug that covered the floor of the car. White powder in white shag, that would make evidence recovery tough.
He then slowly powered the window down, smiled and said “Can I hep yo offica?”
I do not know where I come up with these things, I really don’t. Maybe it was his half-assed attempt to dump the coke, or the fact he thought I was blind and didn’t see him do it..
I looked at my watch and replied, “Yo JJ, what time does that make believe Rolex you got on say it is? It’s almost time to go home and my Timex has quit tickin’.”
You could almost hear his teeth grind as he slowly lifted his arm, looked at his watch (which really was a Korean Rolex knock off) and said “ten thirdy fou.”
“Thanks JJ,” I replied. “I’m outta here. You all have a good night now, hear?” and I walked back to my motorcycle.
As I walked I had to hide my laughter. I could hear them cussing’ and I got this mental picture of two pimps on their knees, snorting rug fuzz.