by Jason Alan

A while back, I was arrested in Irving Texas for public intoxication, ie, PI or public intox. What does that mean? Well, first I’ll tell you what it should mean. It should mean that someone is drunk and causing trouble, they get arrested for disturbing the peace or some violent act, then you throw in a public intox charge on top of that for good measure. But many times, it’s a charge all on it’s own. Especially in bullshit ass Irving TX. That’s what happened to me.

I was drinking somewhere, then I walked home. That was the plan, anyway. A cop pulled up behind me as I was walking, probably swerving a little but staying in my lane (aka the sidewalk). He then proceeded to give me some bullshit test, telling me to follow a pen with my eyes, even though I told him that was unnecessary. I admitted I had been drinking. No breathalyzer, no walking a straight line, just follow this pen. So I did. Next thing I know I’m handcuffed and off to jail. The next morning I saw the judge, and was released, with the half hearted promise to do community service. Oh yeah, it’s not just ‘hey this guy is drunk, let’s throw him in the drunk tank until he sobers up then let him go’. Oh no. It’s not that simple. Because, in Irving, a PI is a $475 ticket. That’s right. That’s no typo. FOUR HUNDRED AND SEVENTY FIVE FUCKING DOLLARS!

A few years back, in Irving, you couldn’t sell alcohol unless you were a restaurant with a liquor license. Basically a dry city. They were one of the last holdouts to legalize the sale in convenience stores, grocery stores, etc. When it was legalized, I bet the IPD had a huge boner. Imagine how much money we can rape our citizens for! What a fucking gold mine! If the stupid city hadn’t let the Dallas Cowboys go (and a bunch of revenue along with it, I might add), they could have walked around the stadium at games just arresting people, making a ton of dough! What a cash cow. After all, they’re drinking, and in public. Aren’t they?

Anyway, I didn’t go do my allotted community service, therefore a warrant was issued for my arrest. I found this out when some douchebag called the police on me because I was charging my iPod in front of his convenience store. A store that, by the way, used to be frequented by me. Not anymore. Fuck them. This was in Arlington. In case you don’t know, Arlington is fairly close to Irving. And, by the way, the new home of the Cowboys. I’ve walked between the two. Not a short walk, but a short drive. Anyway, they take me to Arlington jail and let me out the next morning. Why? Because nobody from Irving came to pick me up to sit out my warrant. Why? Because they don’t want me to sit it out. They want my money. Well fuck them. They will never get a goddamn dime from me.

So I went back to the Irving police station and told them I want to settle my warrant by sitting it out in jail. What do they do? They damn near treat me like fucking Hannibal. While a bunch of people with assault charges and god-knows-what are spending their time locked up in a cell block with people to talk to and able to watch TV all day, I spend my time in a single person cell. No TV. Nothing to read. I just sat there with nothing to do but listen to the sounds of big metal doors opening and closing, the occassional idiot screaming for reasons unknown, and people calling collect, saying get me out of this fucking hellhole. One guy even cried on the phone with his grandmother. That was my only entertainment. Admittedly, it was kinda funny.

For three straight days I stewed in there, not knowing if it was night or day, not even being able to see what time it was, going absolutely batshit crazy. You see, there are about twenty cells at the front of the jail, many of them single occupancy, some of them two or three people can go in. But there are only two of them that have no view except for that of other cells. I had one of those. One of the Hannibal cells. Me. The guy that had a bullshit ticket. The guy that turned himself in and was 100% cooperative every step of the way. I take it back. It wasn’t like being Dr. Lecter. At least they gave him something to read.

Actually, I did have one other moment of entertainment. As I was finally leaving, they brought a screaming raving lunatic in, actually rolled him in, tied down and bagged his face. Apparently he had been violent, and possibly a biter. I hope he bit and drew blood and gave one of those pigs Swine AIDS. He was fucked up on I don’t know what or crazy. Probably both. But he was coherent enough to be cursing us all out in English as well as Spanish. So I guess I didn’t quite get the Hannibal treatment. But at least from his cell he could see the fucking television.