I don’t know what started it, but I seem to have this really serious need to express my love of cheese. Cheeseburger, cheese pizza, grilled cheese sandwiches, cream cheese on bagels, cheesecake, mac and cheese and, of course, cheesy movies. It should come as no surprise to anyone who has read any of my previous ramblings that I seem to have a bizarre sense of taste that includes the original Batman TV show, “Napolean Dynamite,” music by The Monkees, current superhero movies and a somewhat sick fascination with prime-time cartoons.
Sure, I realize that I have gotten older and should be sitting wrapped up in a shawl sipping a cup of Metamucil, gumming a nice bowl of Jell-O while watching Lawrence Welk or a thrilling episode of “Murder She Wrote” (for those of you not familiar with that reference … shut up). The truth is that I refuse to grow up. Growing up is for suckers.
I’m not saying I still get my clothes at the local Baby Gap or that I try to be one of those “cool” old folks that seem to think circus clothes are hip. But I look forward to new episodes of “Family Guy” each week, the new PS4, Xbox 720, “Avengers 2” and the release of the new and improved version of Just For Men hair dye. Wait! Where did all that grey come from? Crap….
Q. I just got a beer ticket. I am 18 years old and wonder if my parents will be told about it?
Although any arrest or citation written by the police is considered a public record, we won’t post your face on a billboard or call a press conference to announce the issuing of a beer ticket. So your parents won’t get a call or telegraph from us. However, and here it comes, contrary to popular belief, we older folks are not as dumb as some think. Eventually we tend to find these things out. If you’re a UCSB student, minor drug or alcohol violations result in a letter from the school to your home in an effort to encourage parents’ awareness of potential drug or alcohol issues that could affect their child’s performance in school.
But other than UCSB’s policy on parental notification, your ticket will be just between you, the cops and the general public. When I talk to someone who gets a ticket, I do encourage them to tell their parents before they find out when you are driving them around, get pulled over for a tail light out, and the cop asks for the license you currently don’t have. And as a parent myself, I highly recommend you tell mom or dad. Sure we’ll be disappointed, but even though I never believed it when I was younger, parents are a lot less upset when you come to them first. Yikes, I sound like my dad …
Q. But when I got arrested for drunk in public, the cop asked for my parents’ address and phone number as well as where I worked and the phone number for them. Are they going to rat me out?
No! It’s true that rats and I both appreciate the greatness of cheese, but that info is not used to rat you out. If you’re 18 or older, we won’t ask for your parents’ contact info. We will ask for an emergency contact name and number, which does not have to be mom or dad. It can be a family member, friend, roommate, local transient or Bob the Builder. The person you choose is up to you. This info is only used if something happens at the jail and you are sick or injured. That way you can get help from the people you know.
As for the work info, that also is not used against you as an opportunity for us to embarrass you or get you fired. Instead, that information is used to show that you have some stable ties to the community. Although if you’re arrested for drunk in public or other minor crimes, you will certainly be released fairly quickly. Other more serious crimes may result in your being held in jail until you pay the bail or go to court a couple days later.
For example, if you are arrested for fighting or battery, the jail staff will review your arrest and booking paperwork. They make a determination on whether they feel you are likely to flee to Canada or stay and take care of the violation. If your only ID is a Sri Lankan passport, you listed your address as being in the Czech Republic and your work info indicates your employer is Flee Fast Now based out of North Korea, it’s doubtful they would think you would make it to your court date. But if you have a local mailing address, go to a local school or have a local job, odds are they trust you have ties to the area and would be more likely to show up in court.
Well I hate to run, or shamble with these bad hips, but I am writing this from the Flamingo Hotel in Vegas, and it’s time for the Wayne Newton show to start. Err, I mean the Prince concert. Yeah. Prince. He’s still hip, right? Oh well, anyway, have a great week and stay safe. If you need help or have any questions at all, let me do what I can to help. Just Question Authority at QA@Police.UCSB.Edu or call me at (805) 893-3446 and I will do what ever I can for you. Take care.
Sergeant Signa: What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas … unless you write your column from there. Cheers, Siggy!
A version of this article appeared on page 12 of the Monday, April 22, 2013 print edition of the Nexus.