June 30 was just another Wednesday night, like many others before. I was attending night classes at my local community college, and got out of class at 8:50 PM. I needed some quiet time to study and do homework before going home to my wife and daughter, so I went to the library and met up with the tutor who gladly assisted me with any and all questions I had with the assignment. After making sure all my homework was complete for the night, I ran into one of my classmates, who was finishing up his assignment. I gave him a hand for a few minutes and he was finished as well. Having finished our homework, we decided to go have a beer or two. The night was still fairly young, and I knew my wife and daughter would be sleeping, so I wouldn't be missed.
Since my car was closest to the library, I agreed to drive. I asked him if he liked to play foosball, which he did. It didn't take long to figure out where we were going. There's this quaint little tavern near the main college in town where college students go to play darts, play pool, drink beer and play foosball. Actually, it was one of three places I knew in town that HAD a foosball table, and was the coolest of the three.
We got to the bar, and I ordered a beer for myself and one for my classmate. We sipped on our beers and made small talk about class while waiting for our turn at the foosball table. By the time we got to the table, and I had consumed about half my beer in the 10 - 15 minutes we had been waiting. Paul was finished with his. He got another, and the game began.
Now for those of you who haven't played foosball, let me explain. It is often confused with table soccer, which is very much the same, but the tables themselves are different in number of men and foosball has sloped corners. At any rate, In foosball, you keep your hands on the two rails that control your team's men. You push, pull and twist the rails to make the men take control of the ball and try and shoot it into your Opponents' goal. The ball only stops when someone scores, or when someone pauses to set up for a shot. In this game, these guys were playing pretty much non-stop, so my hands stayed on the rails much of the time. Between scores I'd take a sip of my beer or a puff of my cigarette. The game went on and on.
In foosball, you have 9 balls, and the winner is the first team to get to five points, or whoever has the highest score after all balls are used. After about 15 or 20 minutes, we lost the game. It was close, though. We were tied 4 to 4 and they won the last shot. I shook the hands of the other players, and went to the bar for another beer. Paul had another, too.
The process repeated itself, with me drinking another beer in the time it took to wait our turn and play the game. We lost the second time, too. Paul drank about 5 beers in this time, and I was finishing my second. I looked at my watch and decided it was time to go, since I had to be at work in the morning. Paul finished his beer, we were on our way.
Now, I made the concious decision to get beind the wheel of that car and drive home. I didn't make this decision carelessly, I made this decision based on years of drinking experience, coupled with the knowledge of my size vs. the amount of alcohol I drink. The average sized person can drink 1 drink per hour. That's 1 12-ounce beer, one glass of wine, or 1 oz of hard liquor. That's for an AVERAGE sized person. I stand 6'3" inches tall, and weigh 240 lbs. I am considerably larger than an "average" sized person. And it was right about an hour and 20 minutes from the time I walked in the bar to the time I left. I was not feeling "buzzed" at all. I didn't go to the bar to get drunk, just to relax for a few minutes. Knowing my limitations and where I was in relation to those limits, I started my car and drove away.
We got about three blocks away and I was going to turn right to go back the way we came. Paul spoke up and told me it would be quicker to get to the interstate if I kept going straight. As I continued up the road, I saw the signs for the interstate, and I noticed an officer parked on a side street up ahead to my left. I wasn't paying much attention to speed, because I wasn't going very fast, but I saw his lights turn on, do I pulled over right away.
The officer pulled up behind me and said I had been speeding. I had no idea what the posted speed limit was on this road, since there were no signs from where I came from to here, but I didn't doubt his claim. He asked if I had been drinking, to which I answered yes, two beers. This may well have worked against me, as it is my understanding that two beers is the lie every drunk tells to the officer when asked how much they had to drink. Sadly enough, two beers was all I had.
The officer asked me out of the car and asked me to do some tests. I did them all, one by one, seemingly to his satisfaction. After I finished one, he would ask me to do another. I didn't have a problem with any. Then he told me he was placing me under arrast for DUI, and if I would take a breath test. I couldn't believe it. Up till now I had been VERY polite, although I felt this was a load of bullshit. I asked him which test I failed, and he said they were all pretty pitiful. He said that in the walking test he told me to keep my arms at my side, and I had raised them several times. Now THAT's a load of shit. I refused the breathalizer going on the advise of EVERY attorney I have ever spoken with. He proceeded to place me in cuffs and put me in the back of the car.
In the back of the car, the officer explained to me what I could expect in the jail that night, and that I wouldn't be released until the next morning, and told me I better get a DAMN good attourney because he's only lost 2 cases in his 13 years as a cop. He then went on to tell me he was a specialist in DUI arrests, kind of like a apecial DUI task force or something. That made me think. Here's a cop sitting on a dark side street just up the road from a major college area where there are several bars lined up in a row on both sides of the street. For a DUI cop, it would be like shooting ducks in a barrel, knowing that odds are one in three of the cars that go by is going to be driven by a drunk driver at that time of night. Then it dawned on me that this was the last day of the month, and the last day of the first half of they year, and maybe he had a quota to meet. Of course this is all speculation, and by the way he wrote up my report, it sounded like I could hardly stand, and was fall down slobbering drunk. Boy that pissed me off something fierce.
By this time, Paul, who was pretty drunk, was sitting in my car rooting through the phone directory of my cell phone. I guess he figured something out, because he called the number listed as "HOME". He told my wife what had happened, and how I was going to jail and that I had only had TWO beers to drink. My wife was beside herself. She didn't believe Paul at first because she knows two beers won't put a dent in my sobriety. He walked back to the cruiser as the officer and I were sitting in the car. He wanted to hand the phone to me so I could speak to my wife, but the cop wouldn't allow that. She could hear my voice and knew I wasn't speaking like I was drunk, and since the cop had a speech impediment, she thought HE sounded drunk.
At any rate, they took me to jail, where I was processed and placed in a cell with 5 other people, one of which it turns out had some kind of contageous illness, like TB or Hepatitis or something. All I know is as I was being removed from this cell, one officer asked another, "Hey why is this guy in with the others? He should be isolated and wearing a mask!" I was thrilled to no end.
So the next day came and I was released on my own recognance, and a friend of my wife's knew a girl who worked for an attorney. That's another story...
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