Me and My Blotter

OK --so, I live in this little town -- a really sweet, quirky, weird little town.

The town bumper sticker on the vehicles of "committed" residents is:


When I moved here eight years ago, I was a bit nervous at first. With a population of 7,000 (at that time), a paper mill for the "big employer", a large number of military bases within a 50 mile radius, and acres and acres of surrounding woodlands, I was a bit daunted about moving from Portland (where I had resided for 22 years) to a little tiny town. Then I saw those bumper stickers everywhere, took a deep breath, and assured myself that everything was going to be A-OK.

I settled in pretty quickly, attending the weekly waffle breakfast at the home of a man who opens his home on Sunday mornings to all comers -- and makes batch after batch of his prized waffle recipe. Visitors bring the raspberries, real maple syrup, whipped cream, etc., -- and musical instruments -- there's usually an impromptu concert after -- a mellow, carbohydrate-soaked concert. This tradition is simply known as "Waffles" -- as in: "Will I see you at Waffles?", "You gonna be at Waffles this week?", and "OMG! You'll never believe what happened at Waffles!"

I attended the Kinetic Sculpture Race -- in which contestants build a human-powered vehicle that must race on water, land, mud, and sand, the "winner" gets the Mediocrity Award (Offishul Rules here) -- for coming in -- not first -- not last -- but smack dab in the middle, and the finale at the Mud Bog is accompanied by the Teddy-Bear Toss (in which stuffed animals are catapulted -- from a huge catapult -- across a football field into the arms of waiting children).

I've been in the "Port Townsend Family Portrait" most years since I moved here -- a full poster-sized photo of thousands of residents, usually photographed from a crane or the top of a building (wish I could take a photo that would do it justice, but even wall-sized, the faces are so tiny that it's a game of Where's Waldo to pick out your friends, or yourself, in the crowd).

But probably my very favorite part of my quirky little town is our Police Blotter and Sheriff's Log -- one of the real reasons I shell out 75 cents for the local weekly paper.

There are Blotter entries that I have clipped and saved, and after laughing uproariously with a friend yesterday as I read my favorite snippets to her, I thought I'd blog a few. It's not like we have zero crime in our town (in fact, there's a meth-lab problem in some areas of the county) -- let's just say that what constitutes the typical entries in the weekly paper are pretty low-key -- and some of them are downright hilarious.

"A dog has been seen running with a pack of coyotes. The dog's former owner said Jan. 1 that the dog is part coyote."

"On May 25th, Officers were called to the scene of a party where a 24-year old man had become stuck in a hide-abed sofa."

"Goats were said to be loose Dec. 30 on Cedar Avenue"

"There was a report of a fire March 19 at East Price Street. Deputies responded and found the fire to be piece of furniture in a fire ring. The people were warned about burning particle board shelving."

"A PT man said he was assaulted after he was struck in the head Dec. 31 by a lobster tail"
Now, to be perfectly fair, the follow-up article in the next week's paper (Yes. There was a follow-up article) did reveal that it was a frozen lobster-tail. So, there is that.

*TRIGGER WARNING* Now, the next one isn't really funny -- but honest to Maude -- I had to wonder if the author of the blotter wasn't just fucking with someone's head with the last line:
"On March 25, a woman brought a doll that she found in the 200 block of Adams Street to the police department. The doll had been altered with satanic symbols. The doll's owner can retrieve it at the police station." [emp mine]
(/TriggerWarning)

But my all time favorite was this one:
"A woman called 911 on Dec 26 to complain that her relatives were annoying her."
I was like: "Holy Shit! You can call 911 for that?!?!"

If only I'd known sooner.

Posted byPortlyDyke at 10:10 AM  

9 comments:

Jess said... November 15, 2008 at 10:46 AM  

From an ignorant Brit's perspective it kind of sounds like you live in the Gilmore Girls :)

NameChanged said... November 15, 2008 at 10:53 AM  

It sounds like an interesting place to be. :)

PortlyDyke said... November 15, 2008 at 10:53 AM  

jess -- lol -- EXACTLY!

Christina said... November 15, 2008 at 11:16 AM  

LOL. I'm glad to know I can call 911 for that--those calls shall commence immediately and continue daily.

It does beat the current method of restraining myself from homicide, right?

Anonymous said... November 15, 2008 at 12:13 PM  

Good heavens it sounds like a wonderful place! I spent my summers in a similarly oddball corner of Maine, where "Fireman's Field Day" was *the* event of the year, culminating in a contest to assemble different parts of fire hoses attached to a hydrant before they turned the water on.

A few men rotated the jobs of fire chief, police chief and chair of the board of selectmen (no women back in those days). If the guy who was this year's fire chief couldnt be located when it was time to go out drinking, the other two would light the dump on fire.

~Broce

Mustang Bobby said... November 16, 2008 at 11:20 AM  

I lived in that same small town -- except it was in northern Michigan.

Beppie said... November 16, 2008 at 4:28 PM  

I love the sound of that Waffle tradition. :) (Although I've never eaten a waffle-- they aren't really big here in Australia!)

Thanks for sharing this. :)

pidomon said... November 17, 2008 at 7:11 PM  

aint small towns grand!

more cowbell said... November 30, 2008 at 2:09 PM  

(found your blog via Jungle Red) Love the blotter report -- I now live north of Seattle (I've been to PT a few times as a visitor)but grew up in Ohio. Our little local paper had a similar police report, in addition to the social column, which included items such as: "Mrs. Howard Stevens hosted a tea Sunday afternoon, for which her grandchildren, Courtney, Lizzie, and Bart Jr. were present. Mrs. Steven's famous butter cookies were featured." Seriously.

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