Usually my Saturday nights are uneventful. I'm not complaining, I'm just stating a fact.
This Saturday night was made special and the tiniest bit exciting by two drunk kids, my across the street neighbor's porch, the police and the mystery citizen that called the police.
After we put Elijah to bed on Saturday nights Jeremiah usually plays the piano for awhile and I sit on the porch and read. (I've currently finished The Beasts by Joyce Carol Oates if anyone is still interested in a Book Club...I even took notes for discussion!)
It's 9pm and dark when I notice a car pull over behind my neighbor across the street's large Black Chevy Avalanche. I could hear people arguing, but couldn't make out what they were talking about. After 10 minutes of them sitting in their car arguing, I totally lost interest and went back to my book. The car starts to pull out and this is where the fun begins.
The car hits the back of the Chevy, gets stuck, the left side of it's fender caught on the right side of the Chevy's bumper. This is where the passenger starts yelling. I didn't catch his name through the nights hilarity, but he was tall and seemed pretty young. So we'll call him Tall Kid.
Tall Kid: "FUCKING STOP DUDE. STOP STOP STOP OH MY GOD STOP!!!!!!!!!"
At this point all the driver had to do was back up. Instead he just keeps going into the bumper and I hear headlights popping, glass shattering and screeeechinggggg.
Tall Kid:"STOP DUDE FUCK FUCK FUCK STOP YOU FUCKING IDIOT FUCKING STOP!"
And the driver does not stop. He finally frees himself from the bumper of the parked Chevy and speeds off past my house and down the street.
Tall Kid:"PULL OVER ASSHOLE. YOU TOTALED MY FUCKING CAR."
What? Hmmm...this is starting to get interesting. A mystery...why is Tall Kid not driving his car? The mystery deepens when the driver finally pulls over, stumbles out of the car and falls to the ground. Tall Kid jumps in the car and I think for sure he's going to take off. Instead he parks the car, comes back to the original driver and helps him up.
Tall Kid: "MIKE WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU DO?!?!! I TOLD YOU TO STOP."
Tall kid stands there for a few minutes and finally Mike says his peace.
Mike: "Dude I didn't hit your car. It's fine. Let's get out of here."
Tall kid begins to protest and Mike starts ShhhShhhShhhing him over and over again. It's so comical I laugh out loud, but stifle it pretty quickly. I'm not a paranoid person but two drunk kids probably don't want to have a chick laughing at their serious state of trouble.
And it gets even more serious.
For the next half hour Tall Kid and Mike push each other and fight up and down the sidewalk about whether or not they're going to notify the owner of the Chevy. I don't personally know the owners, but I've seen them many times and they are an elderly foreign couple, I don't want to guess at their ethnicity. I've heard another neighbor commenting that they're English is getting really good and I've also talked with their landlord about the man's poor health after an ambulance took him away one afternoon.
So the last thing I want is the two drunk kids to be bothering the couple late on a Saturday night. I feel bad for the kids cause I think they'll get the police called on them, I feel bad for the couple cause they'll probably be cowering in their apartment afraid.
Tall Kid proceeds to win after knocking Mike around quite a bit. In Tall Kid's defense Mike is one of the most annoying drunks I've ever seen. He keeps tossing around these gems...
Mike: "I didn't hit my car man! Remember??? We left it at your Grandma's house!"
"I love my girl man. Why the fuck would you tell me I don't."
"You're my best friend man. Why would I hit your car down by the creek? We don't even fish anymore Man....that's so sad dude."
"Just hit me! FUCKING HIT ME!"
Tall Kid: "It's not worth hitting you Man." Over and Over Again.
They finally make it to the porch and Mike lays in the neighbors front yard. I come inside and tell Jeremiah about what's going on. He tells me to stay out of it and I watch from the doorway now.
Mike gets up from time to time and bangs on the door. Tall Kid rings the bell repeatedly and talks to himself about his new car being smashed and how he's just trying to do the right thing.
They fight over and over again.
AND they're on these probably frightened people's porch for more than a half hour.
Finally their scuffles come to blows. Tall Kid punches Mike in the face, Mike pushes Tall Kid up against the railing and CRASH! The railing falls off of the porch. Tall Kid pushes Mike down the hand railing and CRASH! That railing wobbles and crumbles.
At this point I'm in shock.
I know maybe I should have called the cops...but I was more tempted to go and yell at the dumb assholes and tell them to leave a note and get the hell out of there. I was about to, but Jeremiah told me it might just make them more angry, so once again I stayed out of it.
The cops finally roll in just as Tall Kid and Mike make amends somehow and start to walk towards the car. Now Jeremiah gets interested and we both sit on our porch steps to watch.
The cops do the normal bla bla bla stuff, including a sobriety test during which Mike falls over hard, ends in him getting cuffed and put into the back of the cruiser.
Tall Kid brings the cop over to the car and shows him the Chevy and the damage. He's honest about the incident with the car, and the cop just has one question for him...
Cop: "Why would you let that kid drive your car?"
Tall Kid (eloquently): "I don't know dude. He just wanted to."
A while later all my other neighbors are out watching the scene. I've noticed that so far Tall Kid hasn't mentioned the railing to the cops. I know that I don't want the kid to get in trouble, but I also don't want the neighbors to fall coming down their front steps. Especially an elderly and ill old man.
I wrestle with the options for awhile. If I leave a note for the old couple than they'll probably be pissed I didn't tell the cops about their railing. If I tell the cops, the kids will probably get charged with Criminal Mischief if not more....
The cop is walking back past my house towards the Chevy and shines his light up at me. At this point I'm sitting alone, Jeremiah got bored with the goings on.
Cop: "Excuse me Ma'am. Did you happen to see any of this go on tonight?"
Erin:" Oh yes Sir! I saw the whole thing go down from beginning to end! How can I help you bring your task to fruition Sir?"
Okay so it wasn't like that, but essentially I told him that the kids were arguing on the porch for a long amount of time and broke the railing. I said I didn't want to tattle but I was afraid that someone would get hurt..etc...etc...
Cop: "Thank You, Ma'am. I'm glad you told me that...can I have your name, address and phone number, please?"
At this I start to balk. Before I could stop...
Erin: "Do I have to?"
At this the cop looks startled and annoyed.
Cop:"Ma'am, I'll try to keep you out of this but these kids are in some serious trouble and I need all the help I can get."
Erin:"Well...I just don't want to get them in any more trouble....they're just kids."
Cop: "Ma'am, people could have been seriously injured this evening. Please help me out."
Of course I saw the reason behind the whole thing. These kids were obviously not fit to be driving or even out in public while that incredibly intoxicated.
I give the cop my name address and phone number, apologize for being rude and go back to my house.
The damage is done. The kids are in some deep shit.
I still can't help but think I should have told them from the beginning to get the heck out of there.
The night ended with Tall Kid's car being towed and the cop leaving a note on the neighbor couple's front door and car dashboard. The railing still isn't fixed, but at least nobody got hurt.
And I got some excitement for my usually mundane Saturday night, but it's kind of hard to not wonder at what cost?