At the End of the Day

 

This day started just like any of the others in the last three years.  I got up and showered at 5:30 a.m.,  I turned on the morning news as always as I got dressed and made myself ready for the rigors of a long Wednesday hump day.   I left my apartment at 6:40 a.m. everyday in an attempt to get to work by 7:30 each morning,  most times I would make early,  but not always.  It would all depend on the traffic.  Some days it would be light and everything would go smoothly, others there would traffic jams the whole way to the job.    You also have to add time in for idiot drivers, wrecks, emergency vehicles, a broken down Cadillac, and snail crawling 3 mile per hour traffic.  My 32 mile trip takes roughly forty two  minutes on any given day.   I turned into Starbucks drive through to get my morning rush,  a triple latte with cream.   Everything was fine as I pulled up to the intersection to get back to the second leg of my trip to work.  I waited for the light to turn green.  When it did I pulled into the intersection,  I had to slam on the brakes to avoid a collision with some woman with a phone attached to her ear. Driving her Black Lexus SUV,  she shot right in front of me.  The bitch had the nerve to lay on her horn,  as if I…… was in the wrong!  My cup of freshly bought coffee was all over my lap my and the front seats of my car.  In that moment,  I felt a squall of anger flood over me as I turned a hard right to catch up with her.

Oh no you didn’t, bitch!  I punched the accelerator in the Corolla as hard as I could and made that little Toyota get it.  I don’t know why I had to catch her,  I just know in that moment I did.  At that point, nothing was hurt but my pride.  Sure,  she blew the red light and almost hit me broadside,  but it wasn’t worth the trade for my ten seconds of revenge today.   If only I would have just gone on to work, or back home from that intersection.   I caught up with her six blocks later,  she was still on her Apple phone as I snatched her door open.  She didn’t realize what was happening, even when I dragged her from the driver’s seat by her hair.  Her seat belt was unfastened and she slid out easily.  She was maybe 5’2″ and about 130 pounds.  She was kicking and screaming with the phone still at her ear,  when I pinned her aside of her SUV.  There was a second of self-realization for me,  it was like a third person view of me.  I saw myself,  as a big black  professional linebacker with my hands around the neck of a scrawny little white woman,   holding her off her feet, along side of a black Lexus.  That mental picture is what caused me to come to my senses and let her go.  She fell to the street in a heap of quivering flesh.  “STUPID BITCH!”  I recall saying as I walked back to my car.  I could feel the eyes of the traffic on me as I made my way through the cars stopped at the intersection.  My triple latte all over my suit pants,  I looked like a kid who had pissed his pajamas.

I made my way back to my apartment to change my clothes.  I called  my supervisor and left a message on her voice mail saying that I would be late.  All the while,  I thought about what had happened this morning and how I had reacted.  I’d lost it.  Road rage.  I thought aloud “Mitch what the hell was that?  You nearly killed that woman for nothing! Yeah…. she was on the phone,  when she should have been watching where she was driving!   But…. haven’t you did the same damn thing!”   I thought about this while I made my way back to work,  I never even really thought that the cops would pull me over for what I did,  because I might have rough that lady up,  but other than dropping her on her skinny ass, I didn’t hurt her.  I made it to work  at 8:30 and worked until I took lunch at one.  I was coming back from lunch when I saw the police car behind me.  The car followed me for a half mile before turning his lights on.  It took  me a little while to get over into the right lane so I could stop.

The officer sat behind me for about three minutes, and he got out of the car only after a second police car arrived.  He approached my car from the passenger side,  instructing me to turn off my car, and joining him on the shoulder away from the traffic.  As the second officer joined him,  he asked me to place my hands on the back of my car.  He said “Sir, you are not under arrest, but I would like to pat you down for safety reasons”  I complied and he patted me down and then I heard the click of the officer’s handcuffs behind me and that was the start of all the trouble.  I had complied with the search, but he had said nothing about putting on the handcuffs.  If I was going to get my ass whipped,  my hands were going to be free!  As I pulled away, I saw the other officer reaching for his taser.   I shook the officer off  me easily and  broke off running to the front of my car.  When I got to the drivers seat,  the cop that had frisked me grabbed a hold of me again.   I tossed him off again, but this time into the oncoming traffic.  I heard the squeal of tires and the sound of air brakes being applied.  I climbed back into my car and started the ignition.  The officer on the passenger side fired through the back glass on my rear window and I heard the bullets whiz by my head.  The scene was surreal,  they chased me on the freeway and through the streets and I just drove with no particular place in mind.  My thoughts were to go to a police station and give up but I feared that they would just shoot me any way.  When I ran low in fuel,  I got off the freeway and pull into a strip mall.

I had a gun under the seat because my conceal weapons permit was void at any public place or convenience store,  so I left it under my front seat.  I always thought it would come in handy.  I was always reading about someone getting killed by some lunatic or thug because the would run across these idiots and not even have a stickpin. I was determine to never let that happen to me.  I had took the CWT as soon they changed the law.  I would be safe as long as I was in my car.  I grabbed the gun, still in the holster and ran into this office supply place.  I pulled the gun out and yelled for every one to get out of the store.   There was a momentary confused pause among the patrons, that when I fired the gun, got cleared up right away.  They fell over each other as they ran to the front doors,  in less than a minute I was all alone,  I found a chair and stuck the legs in the push guards on the glass doors.  Closing them temporarily, or at least to prevent them from opening from the outside.   I was surprised to see two young women coming from the store’s stockroom.  I pointed the gun at them and forced them back through the stockroom doors.  ” Who else is in here?”  I screamed at them.  One of them replied in a trebling voice,”Nobody else!  We were just about to go out the back door but it was locked!” I hustled them back into the stockroom office and hunkered down for the coming police attack.

The office phone started ringing almost immediately.  I let it ring until it began to get on my nerves and I told the woman who had answered me earlier to answer the phone.  She picked up the receiver and said “Staples Office Supply.”  She listened a moment and gestured with the receiver to me.  “He wants to talk to you.”  she said.   I took the receiver and said ‘Hello. ” In my mind I did not know what else to say.  I have never took hostages before, shit I had never even got a traffic ticket.  If you had told me this morning that I would be in this situation that I’m in right  now ……I would told you that you must be crazy as a shit house rat!  I don’t get into crap like this.  The guy on the phone spoke in a calm steady voice.  He gave me his name as ask me mine.  “Mitchell McHenry” I said thinking that he probably already knew that.  Were the playing games with me?  He said  “Mr. McHenry,  Nobody has been hurt yet,and you have minor misdemeanor charges at this time.  If you will just give up and come to the door with your hand up, everyone can home alive tonight.”  Something didn’t set right with me about “going home alive”,  I knew sure as hell that I wouldn’t be going home anytime soon.  Not tonight or any night this week for damn sure.  “The cops that stopped me on the side of the freeway,  said they wanted to search me.  When he pulled out his handcuffs I knew they had lied about me not being under arrest! Now you come in here wanting me to trust you! Y’all must think I’m really stupid! ”  I slammed the phone down and ripped the cord out of the wall.

The phone began to ring again in the front of the building and out in the warehouse, but the phone in this office was deadly silent.  “My name is Cara  and this is Mandy” the voice of my phone answering hostage came back to my attention, giving me a start.  I had forgotten in that short intervals that there were two other people here!  My pulse was racing ,  my mind was sifting through thought after thought,  not really focusing on anything in particular.  It was more like shuffling a deck of cards.  Turning back to the women I said to them “ I’m sorry I got you involved in this shit,  but I didn’t know what else to do.  They pulled me over a little while ago and they tried to kill me.”  Cara thought a minute before saying in a soft voice ” I’m not trying to run your business,  I don’t know what’s going on, but not answering the phone is not the thing to do.  If they don’t hear from you they are going to come in here shooting.”  I knew she was right about that.  Every movie I had seen on television was  like that.  A quiet hostage taker was a dead hostage taker.  I can’t even believe I’m thinking like this.  I had no intentions of being in this kind of jam anyway.  I should just give it up,  and let those white girls go.   I might end up in prison but at least I won’t get shot up.  I told Cara to go answer the phone, at least that will give me a few more minutes to figure out what to do next.  Cara went out of the office door and went about eight feet to the phone on a small desk in the warehouse.  “Staples Office Supply.” she said again.  She listened a few seconds and turned back to me.  ‘He doesn’t seem to me as if he wants to talk to you again,  just tell me and I will relay it to him. At least until he calms down a little.”  Cara seem to listen a bit more.  She said ” He asked if everyone is okay?  Does anyone need medical attention?”  How many people are in here?”   I told her “ Tell him whatever he wants to know,  but tell him not to run in here on me!  And don’t tell me no more fucking lies!”

to be continued…………………………..

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