Sunday, November 14, 2004

5am Shakedown

It was 4am, Saturday morning, November 13. The second night in a row at Jaime's house that me and about 12 friends got together to play Halo2 until we fell unconscious (or got sick of being fragged). The last survivors of the night were me, Jaime, Nolan, and Nick. Rob was sleeping on the couch in the family room. We decided to play one last match of free-for-all murderspree, 50 kills wins. After about 20 minutes, we're all tense with agitation, as the frags become frequent and the gameplay turns into a white-knuckle adrenaline rush of button mashing and cursing each other.


And let me tell you, that knock was no where near as tame as it sounds. It was more like a BAM BAM on the door. Nolan gets up to answer the door, while the rest of us breath in more slowly for the pause in gameplay. The door opens, and I can barely make out a navy jacket and one tell-tale icon patched to the jacket: POLICE. I was running on 33 hours without sleep, but still alert. Seeing the two officers at the door almost pushed me into paranoia. The white cop asks if they could 'come in and talk,' and I almost wanted to tell them to have their 'talk' outside. Instead, Jaime lets them in and thus begins the most ridiculous police encounter I've ever had. They ask if Nolan, as well as the rest of us, knew this Diana/Deana girl. For a split second I imagined that they were referring to my friend Diana. However, Nick stepped up and said that this particular girl was his co-worker (she had come to Jaime's house to kick-it, although I never knew her name), and he asked whether she was in trouble. This is the part where the thought of "Fuck the Police," comes to mind. Rather than answer a simple question coming from my friend, the white cop (there was an asian/filipino cop with him) switches into DRAGNET mode and begins to turn the questions around on him and implicate that he was at fault.

Nick: "Whats wrong, is she okay? Is she in trouble?"
Cop: "Why do YOU think she would be in trouble?"
Nick: "I don't know, MAYBE because you're in here asking us about her?"

Believe me, the girl seemed just fine the entire time she was at Jaime's. She had mysteriously left the house 30 or so minutes before the cops came, and it looked like both an ambulance and fire engine were outside because of her.

Cop: "So what's going on here, you guys partying?"
Jaime: "Uh...we're just hanging out and playing video games, sir"

The room was dark, no music was playing, and only four nocturnal souls were huddled around a big screen TV with Halo2 in pause. I don't believe thats called partying at 4 in the morning.

Cop #2 looks at Jaime's hookah and asks: "Well, what is this?"
Jaime: "Its...uh..something to smoke tobacco out of"

You must be a dumb police officer if you've never seen a hookah. We only use hookahs to smoke tobacco, we have plenty of pipes to smoke weed out of.

So the interrogation continued, but the white cop took Nick and their Q&A session into the kitchen while Nolan, Jaime, and I were left with the asian cop in the living room. The asian cop's questions were basic, and had no hint of entrapment in his voice. In the kitchen, I could hear the other cop asking Nick more questions, as well as Rob's snores. Eventually, I heard Nick's voice rise, which probably meant Nick was becoming frustrated by the cop's questions.
When they finished their chat, the cops went outside to reconvene, or exchange notes or whatever it is that cops do when they harass a bunch of guys playing Halo2.

They were gone for about 20 minutes, and the first few minutes after the door closed was the most agitating moment of silence I've ever had. The four of us just sat there, dumb-founded. Apparently, this girl had left the house in a fit, 911 was called, police thought that someone slipped a drug into her drink.

Nolan picked up his controller, and started to move around. I did the same, then Jaime did, too. Nick started to protest, saying that he can't play with such a heavy burden on his mind. He kept apologizing to Jaime because the cops came by on account of his co-worker. We tell him to loosen up, and to get his mind off it. I start to melee hit his idle character to get him to start playing again. After 6 or so melee strikes, his character dies, and he finally gets back into the mood to kill. Another 20 minutes pass by, and we're all back in the mood to shoot and kill; our minds are almost completely off the matter.


Jaime opens the door, and we stop playing once more. The two cops have returned, but this time they made up their minds to tell us what crimes they assumed we had committed. So we're told the probably had a bad reaction to the hookah or weed smoke, and had most likely called the 911 thinking someone had dropped a date-rape drug into her drink. I almost felt glad it wasn't as worse as it could have been. But, the police encounter didn't end there.

Cop: "You kids need to watch who you party with, or next time there'll be trouble."

Okay, I probably shouldn't party with gamers next time, or I'd probably end up in jail because of them.

Before they left, the white cop, WITHOUT GIVING REASON, singled me out and told me to stand up. Then he told Nick to stand up again. We both looked at each other like, "WHAT THE FUCK?"

We're told to turn around. I almost, instinctively, put my hands on my head and began to move towards the wall with my legs spread apart. READY FOR THE PAT DOWN. I think Nick was ready to do that, too. Instead, the cop tells us to keep our hands at our side. With my back to the police, I felt kind of out of place. Either pat me down or slap some cuffs on, because I sure as hell dont look like Nick. He tells us to turn around, face front. I could see on Nolan and Jaime's faces, that they were also in a silent "WTF?" gesture.

Cop: "I hope you guys learned a valuable lesson tonight."

The four of us were still dumb-founded. What lesson? That girls will think they're dying and call the police? Not to have Halo2 gaming parties? That the police have nothing better to do at 5 in the morning then interrogate four guys who aren't making a large ruckus?

But the last thing the white cop said was the tipping point. He looked at me and Nick and left with some of the most idiotic words ever uttered out of a police officer's mouth.

Cop: "Wow. You guys are totally stoned. Hah hah."


NONE OF US were stoned at all. Probably 3 hours ago, but not at 5am. We were only high on adrenaline. I sure as hell wasn't even high on anything. I've been passing everytime it came to me for the past 5 months. He must have mistaken my vacant look for euphoria, when it was actually the fact that I hadn't slept since Thursday night (It was Saturday morning).

What a waste of playing time. In the end, I won the "50 Kill" match, with Jaime a close second place.