The opening of this story is necessary set up but I don’t want to talk about how I lost my house key for the second time since moving into my house barely over a year ago. I called a locksmith from work to meet me at my house. He pulled in behind me sitting in my car to stay warm and asked if I was the guy locked out of his house. We walked up my porch and he offered to teach me how to do what I was paying him to do. So he was explaining how a lock has five parts and you just have to drill through all five, but he’s having trouble and having to use different size bits. While he was working a cop car rolled by real slowly but kept going so I didn’t give it much thought. A couple minutes later, two police officers swung around the porch and asked if one of us lived in the house. Now, I’ve had a few exchanges with cops, traffic stops, once in college I got carded by one when I was over 21 and had a beer in my hand, but this was the first time one ever approached me as if I was in the middle of committing a felony. They were intense. At one point the woman cop, and it was about one degree outside, said to me, “Take your hands out of your pockets, please.” Which I love that she tacked on the please after she told me to get my hands out of my pockets. Like I’ll be polite but I’ll be polite after I’ve told you what I need you to have done before I even get to please. So I was feeling pretty amped and probably looked like a criminal would getting busted for breaking into a house.
I got out my ID when they asked for it and right away I realized the address on my ID wasn’t current, so I told the guy that, and he’d already noticed. “Yeah, this ID doesn’t match up.”
My concern then was how difficult was it going to be to prove residency without access to my house, but I wasn’t worried because I knew I lived there. The guy on his knees drilling into my front door lock didn’t know anything except that I called him up and told him I lived there. He looked terrified. Then one of the police officers grabbed a piece of mail out of my mailbox. It turned out to be junk mail but it was from my bank, so I said, “There! That’s me! That’s my bank!”
That was all they needed. They were on their way. I appreciate knowing the Ravenna police are looking out and hope they stop by if there’s a next time of someone trying to break into my house. They came because a neighbor called and told them what we were up to and that the neighbor said he thought an old man lived there. Now I realize in some circles I might be referred to as an old man, but he obviously meant someone older than me since he found me suspicious. So I said, “I wonder why he thought an old man lived here.”
The only part of the experience that did tick me off was that the one cop jumped on me like I was attacking the guy for calling. I didn’t care he called, I appreciated him looking out, but before we throw the guy a parade for doing his civic duty, let’s remember his observation skills could use some work. I got out of the same car that’s been parked in the driveway for the last year, I mowed my lawn all summer, and the previous owners were a couple with a 15yo son. So I really just wondered what old man he meant. The locksmith was pretty wired after they left, I could tell. He said in three years of taking 5-10 similar calls a day, he’s never had that happen. I asked him if he’d seen the old episode of Punk’d where Dax had locksmiths let him into a store he claimed to own and then after they let him in, he started robbing the place and the locksmiths looked on slowly realizing what was happening. He hadn’t seen it, but he’d had that exact same look on his face when he heard that cop say, “This ID doesn’t match up.”