Friday, October 7, 2011

Of ticks, name changes, and police blotters ...

A few things:

1. I went for a glorious hike yesterday and took a million pictures of all the cool cliffs I climbed up, the creek I walked along and the things I found along the way. On the icky side, I found a tick on me. Still creeped out. Don't wanna talk about it.

2. Seeing as discarded underpants seem to find their way into my path NEARLY EVERY WHERE I GO, I've been contemplating changing the name of this blog to Discarded Underpants. I'm still kinda disillusioned about the "Hamchuck" thing since I found out about it's origins. 

3. When some friends were over awhile ago, we trotted out my Corning Leader Police Blotter collection.  I'd forgotten how funny they were, so I'm going to feature some of them here.

A little background- back in 1998/1999, the local newspaper in Corning, NY, The Leader, was being criticized for not alerting its citizens to criminal activity in the area. (My parents used to subscribe to The Leader because our local paper is only an afternoon edition, and by that time of day, they didn't care any more.)

The Leader apparently responded by directing some hapless staffer to print nearly every item of the Corning police log every day. I've personally seen the police blotter (more on that in a bit) and the items are written very tersely, very "just the facts, ma'am." This Leader staffer, who has remained unidentified, took it upon him/herself to "jazz" the items up a bit. The result? Hilarity. I started collecting them after my mom pointed out this first gem to me:

5:21 a.m.
A person at Dunkin Donuts said a man who thought he was the devil wouldn't leave.
The alleged demon had left by the time police arrived.

I eagerly scanned each day's edition of The Leader for gems like this and I wasn't disappointed. I started clipping them and collecting them in a little book, with the idea that it would make an amazingly funny novelty book. I contacted The Leader about permission to reprint and was swiftly and irreversibly rebuffed. Those items were the property of The Leader and they would not give me permission to reprint. I could, however, reprint the original police reports they were written from, as they were public information.  That's when I went to the Corning Police Department and saw that the real gold was in that lowly underling's genius as he/she crafted those complaints into comedy gold. 

So, in lieu of my original intent, I'm going to be mining my little scrapbook for these police reports and print them here. Narny, narny, narny, Corning Leader.

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