Time to Settle Accounts
January 28, 2011: I thought the cop was a prostitute, the real version.
The driver was a young man in his thirties of Eastern European descent and an affable haircut and he was driving me from Carrie’s to a 9 AM interview with a Chicago alderman. Snow was falling and I knew that after the interview I would have a few miles to walk to the next one.
Alongside Addison at the Lakeview police station sat a black two-door sports car with its doors open and no person inside and a police SUV parked behind with lights rolling. The driver of the black car was seated in the backseat of the SUV while the driver of the police car was searching the black car with a flashlight.
“That’s how they get you,” the driver said.
“Did you see what he did?” I asked.
“No no, I saw them take him to the car. That will be an expensive ticket.” We passed the Red Line stop, and some kids hopped across the street in hopes of making the train, and the driver skidded a bit and cut the wheel left. When we cleared the big intersection at Clark, he said, “A friend of mine, you know, he was arrested for joking to an officer. One of these cute little lady cops, going undercover, she asks him if he wants some and he says ‘How much?’ He was joking! But you can’t joke.”
We turned onto Ashland, and the driver told me more about his friend. “Two thousand dollars, you know? He’s married, and he’s joking. But they need money so bad. The city. You don’t have to take out one penny. Just, ‘How much?’ Two words, you’re finished.”
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