When I woke up I hurt. I hurt everywhere. The cast on my right arm itched and the arm hurt.
The broken arm was only two weeks old and the constant pain was getting to me. I was trying not to count on pain killers.
My patrol area was the downtown battle zone. I had hookers, pimps, several topless and strip clubs, taxi dance halls, and other assorted pillars of the community.
When I started riding the Vespa motor scooter there were lots of laughs. My motorcycle got wet and it shrank. What, I couldn’t afford the whole motorcycle? Stuff like that. They didn’t last long.
First of all, my reputation as a beat cop kept a lot of their comments unspoken. And after they saw the scooter could get around very fast, and go almost anywhere, they stopped laughing and started keeping a closer eye on me.
But, accidents will happen. One night while harassing a pimp I had a special dislike for, I lost control and went down. The broken arm was a result of that.
Not a bad brake, but bad enough. They put it in plaster, gave me some pain killers, and told me to enjoy the paid vacation.
It’s hard to enjoy a “vacation” when you’re in pain all the time. It’s hard to sleep with a cast. It’s even harder to get laid. In fact, it’s damn near impossible.
So I took some pills, drank some, a lot, and tried to learn to like the pain.
It’s also hard to cook so I ate out as lot.
It’s hard to clean house, so the apartment looked like a bomb went off, several bombs.
But, my arm wasn’t the only pain. That morning I had gotten a visit from my sector sergeant and the watch lieutenant. They had even more bad news.
The letter they delivered had a simple message;
“The Honolulu Police Commission has upheld the complaint against you filed by ____________. Blah, Blah, Blah.
Therefore, for the good of the Honolulu Police Department, it has been decided that upon your return to duty you will be on suspension for fourteen days and at the end of that suspension you shall have your employment with the Honolulu Police Department terminated.
You have the right to file grievance –blah-blah-blah.
Chief of Police”.
In plain language I had been fired. The complaint was a minor thing, but an Internal Affairs head hunter with special beef with me, had worked hard. He built a case and found or fabricated enough evidence to convince the commission that I was no good. The Police Commission only got to hear one side of the story. After you filed a grievance is when you get to tell you side.
So I got fired.
The only thing I ever wanted to be was a cop. From the time I was 12 or 13 it was the only profession I wanted.
I was a good cop. I made good arrests. I knew what was going on in town. My snitches provided good info not only about my working area, but sometimes clear across town.
My quarterly ratings were high. The number of closed cases rom m beat was always high. Often when the detectives wanted something special, they asked me.
So when this dropped on me it was a heavy blow. My whole life felt shattered. After eleven years, I really didn’t know what to do.
So when I got up, it was not only the physical me that hurt. My heart and soul hurt.
I was trying to make coffee and breakfast when the knock on the door came. I put the coffee down, threw on a shirt and answered the door.
When I opened the door, there stood another sergeant. In his hand was the big fruit basket that was always delivered to injured officers and their families.
I took out the card and read;
Wishing you a speedy recovery.
—– Stamp ——
Chief of Police
Once I started laughing I couldn’t stop or catch my breath. The sergeant finally asked what was so damn funny. So I told him;
“They fired me this morning.”
The irony escaped him.