My First Brush With The Law…
Yes, I did say my “first” brush with the law. (Hi Mom! Hi Dad! Aren’t you glad your kid has a blog? That’s read internationally? (A shout out to my three foreign readers!) Cool stuff, huh?)
I went from living with a very strict parent in a conservative environment to living with a very “laissez faire” parent in a stoner town.
It’s no wonder I score polar opposites on personality tests – on the same test, or I score dead center.
Just imagine what it’s like inside my head…
You, wondering for a moment what it’s like inside my head: *thinking… imagining… letting out small scream*
But I digress…
Capitola was an awesome beach town to grow up in as a young teenager because you could walk everywhere. This was very helpful for someone who didn’t have a car. It made it MUCH easier to get into trouble.
Wonder what your kids are doing while you’re at work or not with them? Keep reading because my parents NEVER knew about this (until now)….
I was just about 14 and I had two partners in crime girlfriends, Sonja* and Penny*. One night we were supposed to go to the movies to see Used Cars (I think, probably so we could ogle Kurt Russell). I can’t remember why (the theater was closed?), but we blew it off and started walking around The Esplanade, which is the two block one and a half block that comprises downtown Capitola and runs along the beach. (Yes, it’s micro small.)
In the near distance we can see what’s left of the pier after the recent and massive storm took most of it out. Just beyond that we can see a fire. It looks like a bonfire. An illegal bonfire on the beach. Burning the washed-ashore remnants of the pier.
Cool. An illegal bonfire!
We gravitated towards trouble like magnets point north. Naturally, we hastily make our way over there.
When we three gals, along with our smokeables, get there we find three boys. AWESOME!
With booze. SCORE!
They were probably thinking: Three girls! AWESOME!
With smokeables! SCORE!
It was a match made in heaven: Three gals, three guys, a wee party, and an illegal bonfire.
The Universe is truly magnificent in it’s orchestration. I still get chills thinking of the perfect symmetry and synchronicity of the circumstances.
We’re all having a grand ol’ time getting to know each other. I only remember one of the guy’s names: Kenny Price. I don’t know where he is now, but we were friends for a long time after. (No, no, it was all very innocent. Except for the partying with underage kids and all. If you know him, tell him to contact me.)
After about 30 minutes or 130 minutes (hard to tell when you’re partying) we hear sirens in the distance.
We all freeze in place, listening intently to determine if they’re coming to break up the party and illegal bonfire. When the sirens stopped about two blocks away we all heaved a sigh of relief and resumed the party.
Sure, it’s easy for you to sit there and think “What a bunch of idiots”.
Like you never did anything stupid when you were young.
Not five minutes later I notice (I was always the one who saw the cops first) the silhouette of a stocky, square-shouldered, hip-holster-wearing figure about 15 yards away and headed right towards us.
“COPS!!”, I yell at the top of my lungs.
Penny, who had the MOST. SCARY. MOM. that would have butt beat into next year, ran into the ocean and swam away – in Northern California, in the cold dark of night. I tell you this not to highlight her swimming prowess or ability to withstand arctic temperatures, but rather to emphasize her INTENSE NEED to not have her mom find out what she had been up to.
Sonja, the hippie child of cool hippie parents, would not have suffered the same wrath as Penny, nonetheless her experience would not have been pleasant had she been busted by the cops. She ran into the water behind Penny. Lacking the full parental motivation as poor Penny, she only waded up to her knees and began walking under the remnants of the pier towards the other side of the beach.
I, with absolutely no desire to get wet, kind of jogged under the DRY part of the remnants of the pier towards the other side of the beach where Sonja was also headed.
This was totally not worth getting wet over. Even if I was in shorts.
My new living arrangement with my father was very lax, to put it mildly. I did not have the “parental motivation” my friends did. There were hardly ever any consequences for me other than a mild feeling of self-imposed embarrassment. Except for those consequences the police would impose.
Capitola PD usually just took our stash and the implements there of, and told us to go home.
Not much in the way of consequences there, either. (Although losing your stash at a young, unemployable age sucked quite enough.)
The cops were waiting for us on the other side of the pier.
NO?! Really?!?! The cops were already there? (Like I said, we weren’t that bright.)
The cops rounded us tow gals up and brought us back to the fire. The guys hadn’t made any attempt to run (???). One was over 21 (that’s where the booze came from). The cops kind of gave him a stern talking-to about providing booze to minors or some lame thing along those lines.
I think he said contributing to the delinquency of minors.
Hey, who you calling MINORS? We were teenagers and occasional attendees of the local junior high, I’ll have you know.
The boys were totally cool and said the smokeables were theirs, and took full responsibility for the illegal and most awesome bonfire. They lied and said we’d just shown up seconds before the cops.
The guys really did deserve to get laid for that one. Too bad we weren’t puttin’ out.
Capitola PD was equally cool, only gave the one guy a ticket for the bonfire and didn’t call any of our parents.
A most excellent police department.
I quickly learned there was a total lack of consequences for such things.
The morals of the story: 1.) I learned there were no consequences, and should therefore continue on my downward path. (More on that later) 2.) If you let your children play with strangers now, they’ll grow up to blog about it later. 3.) Don’t let the cops know about your stash. They don’t like to share.
*Names have been changed to protect the guilty innocent.