Cheese it! The cops! (a white privilege tale)

I had a run-in with the cops last night.  Damn, the way they harass me.  I had left my car near our neighborhood nine-hole golf course (yeah, that’s right, we’re talking mean streets), and my neighbor Carol drove me down to retrieve it.

Don't step away from the car, ma'am -- you're perfectly fine!

Don’t step away from the car, ma’am — you’re perfectly fine

It’s about 10:30 p.m.  The street and the neighborhood are entirely dark and quiet.  My neighbor swings her car around nose-to-nose with mine.  As I get out and start toward my own car, I see headlights coming down the street.  Those headlights belong to a police car and in a few seconds, I’m in a police spotlight.  Here’s what goes down:

Me:  (Waving my keys in a manner that can only be described as “merrily”)  “Yes, this is my car!”

I continue unconcerned to my car.

Him: (spotlight still shining on me) “Um, is everything alright?”

Me: “Oh, everything’s fine!  I had to leave the car here earlier, for, um, personal reasons.” [translation: none of your business why I left my car here, officer]

The officer moves the spotlight to my neighbor, who is still sitting in her car.  She rolls down her window and waves.  I can’t see if the wave is merry, but let’s assume it is.

Him: “Ok!  Just wanted to make sure you ladies weren’t out here drinking!”

Laughing all around.

Me:  (somewhat overly brightly, as we have in fact been drinking for the last two hours, just not here) “No, everything’s fine!”

Just making sure you get home safely ma'am!

Just making sure you get home safely ma’am!

He pulls away down the street a bit but doesn’t quite leave the scene.  I get into my car and start it, do a K-turn and head toward home a few blocks away.

As I near my house, I see headlights behind me, and when I pull into an open space on the street the police car cruises slowly by me.

The harassment never ends.