Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Never trust the action figures

There I am, staggering through the briefing room in search of a coffee pot when my Sergeant lays a fatherly arm across my shoulders.

"'Dog," sayeth that worthy, "I just received a grievance from TDC."

I blink at him, muzzily.

"Seems like one of our prison-bound inmates has complained that the deputy who transported him to durance vile provided him with an actual child's Happy Meal from McDonalds for lunch on said trip."

I can smell coffee. It's here. Somewhere.

"According to the inmate, when he protested, this deputy confiscated the toy from said Happy Meal, hooked it into the partition between the seats, and ... I am quoting here ... 'Made it talk smack', unquote, to the inmate for the rest of the trip."

Coffee. Coffeecoffeecoffee.

"In a high, squeaky voice."

Where are you, little caffeine jolt of life?

"The worst of it all -- according to the inmate -- was the toy staring at him for the next six hours. You wouldn't happen to know if any of our officers might be inclined to do something like this, would you?"

Oh, holy days -- the warrants crew brought coffee! May flights of angels sing thee to thy rest! Coffeecoffeecoffee!

"Yeah, I didn't think so."

"Huh?" I respond, wittily, as the Blessed Java Bean of Wakefulness starts firing up the old synapses.

"Nothing, 'Dog. Check with Range about firearm re-qual next week."



Sunday, June 27, 2010

Professor LawDog's School of Survival and Mayhem

Good day, class. Today's block of instruction is over the humble zip-tie.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that zip-ties are replacing duct tape as the restraint of choice for those critters who choose kidnapping as their vocation of choice.

Further evidence shows that not only does kidnapping befall several thousand citizens per year in America alone, that number is growing.

With that in mind, it behooves a prepared citizen to have a working idea on the ways of by-passing a zip-tie in order to escape -- or to enable you go Dr Seuss* on your Personal Chew Toy.

The folks over at Imminent Threat Solutions have gone to the effort to put together a nice little course entitled "How To Escape From Zip Ties".

Before we get to the guest lecture, we here at The LawDog Files would like to pre-emptively answer complaints that have been forwarded to us by fellow Peace Officer types:

One. The chance of a critter reading my blog and learning how to defeat zip-ties is slim at best, and is more than off-set by the chance of that same critter is going to learn how to defeat zip-ties during his next extended stay at The Greybar Hotel. Remember: what one inmate knows, he'll teach other inmates for a box of honey-buns or a pack of smokes.

Two. Even if -- by some slim chance -- a critter does stumble across my blog and learn how to defeat zip-ties ... so what? We -- as officers -- are too damned comfortable with zip-ties as it is. Just because your suspects are zip-tied doesn't mean you can relax -- but that's what happens. I see way too many officers standing over a zip-tied critter or three with relaxed body language and an expression that strongly hints that the officer is thinking, "Beige, beige, I think I'll paint the ceiling beige".

If you read this and worry that your next zip-tied critter may know how to slip those ties -- GOOD! You should be keeping a closer eye on your detained suspects.

Three. Knowledge is good. Remember that several thousand Americans per year are kidnapped. Just because they're not wearing a badge doesn't mean we get to deny them knowledge that may save their butts. Not to mention that one of the several thousand victims next year ... might be you.

You officers down on the US/Mex border, or with family out in Iraq/Afghanistan, might want to think long and hard about that for a bit.

Now. On the the guest lecture:

ITS Tactical "How To Escape From Zip Ties".


*"Locks in Socks put Skells in Hells." Alternatively: "One Thunk, Two Thunk, Red Punk, Catatonic Punk."


So, I'm sitting here, furiously typing away at a post on knives, when Herself walks in, all bouncy and happy because she just found her collection of Limited Edition aeroliner barf bags.

*blink, blink*

Isn't she just perfect?


Pass this along

By way of Peter over at Bayou Renaissance Man, we learn of the financial status of the Ernie Pyle museum in Dana, Indiana.

Since I'm off fast food combo meals these days, seems like the least I can do is send the price of a couple of them to that museum.

Y'all might consider letting other folks know about this.


Friday, June 25, 2010

On this day ...

... In 1876, General George Armstrong Custer had an Epic Diplomacy Fail and went out in a blaze of glorious history at the hands of some monumentally cheesed-off Lakota and Cheyenne at the Battle on the Greasy Grass.

Of course, he also managed to take most of his command with him -- no word on how they might have felt about the whole "Noble Matyrdom" thing.

... In 1950, the North Korean People's Army announced that the South Koreans might be considering some kind of cross-border raid some time in the future and decided to go ahead and repel it. Just in case.

When it was pointed out that North Korea's "spontaneous response" involved a well-coordinated pre-dawn push by armour and about 90,000 infantry, supported by artillery and mortar fire, the Norks responded by blowing raspberries and bellowing, "All Your Seoul Are Belong To Us!"

And so a war that lasted for three years gave us a TeeVee show that lasted for eleven years; and a cease-fire that has lasted (more-or-less) for fifty-seven years.

... Aaaand Michael Jackson is still dead.


Thursday, June 24, 2010

Meditations on damnit.

I have always been able to rely on my body. Obnoxiously healthy, my carcass has shaken off some fairly dramatic trauma, and powered on through.

A little while ago, our family physician dragged me (kicking and screaming) into a physical and after all the poking and prodding pronounced that I was pre-diabetic.

I was ... outraged.

I did some research on the World Wide Web, and armed with the results, went to get a second opinion from another doctor, well-respected in his field. He agreed with me that my results were on the low side of pre-diabetes. Matter-of-fact, my results could -- maybe, if you squinted --be interpreted as being in the fuzzy area between normal and pre-diabetic.

However, he cautioned, seeing as how both of my grandfathers had diabetes, and at least one of my fathers brothers had the disease, I was (drum-roll, please) "pre-disposed".

I was cautioned to exercise more, lay off the Dr Pepper, and to "stop eating like you're still 18".

A little after the first of 2010 I started noticing ... problems. I was losing words. Trying to write was like sifting through porridge. I knew what I wanted to say, but I couldn't figure out the words that were the structure to the ideas.

Then I started losing words in conversations. In the middle of a sentence, the next word in line would just sort of ... fade away ... leaving me to fumble about for a synonym.

You have no idea how good it is to write the word "synonym".

About three months ago, I was down south on an overnight trip to pick up one of our wandering critters when I lost a jail.

I remember waking up in the motel in McAllen, Texas. I remember leaving the motel to drive to the Hidalgo County Jail, looking at the scenery and remarking, "Damn, that looks a lot like San Antonio."

Baby Officer, who was driving, said, "That's because it is San Antone, 'Dog."

When I turned to look at her to tell her, "Nice try", I noticed that there was someone in the back seat of the cruiser.

Not only do I have absolutely no recollection of the four-hour, two-hundred and twenty mile trip from Edinburg to San Antonio, but -- and this is the terrifying part for someone who memorizes floor-plans out of habit -- I couldn't tell you where the Hidalgo County jail is, what it looks like, where Intake is, who I talked to, or how I received our prisoner.

To this day: nothing.

When we got back to the S.O., I drove down to my Dr, walked in and said, "Something's wrong."

Fifteen minutes later, he waves the infamous Little Sample Cup in my general direction and announces, "Here's your problem. This could be poured over pancakes. Go home. Nothing to eat after 10PM, be at the lab at 8 AM. Wear loose clothing."

Long story short, six months after being diagnosed with pre-diabetes, I'm looking at full-on Diabetes, Type 2 (Non Insulin Dependent).


After three months of a low-carb diet, exercise, and metformin twice daily the general fogginess that somehow snuck up on me has gone away, and I think I'm back up to snuff.

Which is A Good Thing.


Sunday, June 06, 2010

The Longest Day

On this day in 1944, 175 000 American, Australian, British, Canadian, Norwegian, Polish and Free French troopies entered the term "D-Day" into the English language, as well as "Omaha Beach", "Utah Beach", "Sword Beach", "Juno Beach", "Gold Beach", and "Pointe du Hoc".

Thank you, gentlemen.


Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Monster Hunter update

Larry Correia's sequel to Monster Hunter International is apparently being released as an electronic book ahead of the dead tree edition.





That right there is a young man with a set of big brass ones.