Doc Stevens on Dealing with the Cops

Thursday, July 15, 2010 8:34 PM Posted by Tondeleo Lee Thomas

Tondeleo: Everyone knows that it is dangerous to provoke police officers, particularly in the USA where, not only are they all armed, but it is likely that the people they are dealing with, the American people, are also armed. So the police in the USA are particularly wary of dealing with people. They know they have to treat people like V.I. P's or they may get sued. At the same time, they know that they may end up having to shoot the person.

Doc and I were talking about this one evening, and here is some of the counsel he gave me about what to do if I got pulled over whilst driving in America.

Doc: They don't act like it, but cops are nervous when they pull you over. 'Cause you might be armed, or drunk and ready for a fight. They ain't know if you just robbed somebody and think that they's caught you, so you're ready for a shootout. That's why they's kinda nervous and edgy over here. Ain't like England where the people ain't got guns and half the cops aint got 'em neither.

I been pulled over lots. When you get pulled over, here's what you need to do, Tondy:

Stay in the car. If you get out of the car and walk toward him, he thinks you're bein' 'gressive an' it'll make him go for his gun and order you back in the car. One night I got pulled over for havin' a headlight out. So I got out of my truck, and went back there to talk with the cop. He got nervous and told me to get back in my truck. I was wantin' to be friendly, so I kept comin' toward him. He pulled his gun and told me to GET BACK IN THE CAR! I got back in, and tol' him he ain't had to be grouchy and he tol' me that if I had kept a comin' he woulda busted a cap in my head!

When you get pulled over, just sit there in the car, till he comes up to your window. Have your license ready and registration. If it's night time, turn on your inside lights so he can see you ain't got no one hidin' in the car. They always ask me if I been drinkin' or have any drugs or alcohol in the truck with me. The answer is "No SIR! Just me an' my guitar an' I am in recovery, SIR."

I usually ain't got nobody with me but Marilyn, of a guitar or Doc and Dale Jr.Dale, Jr. or Stubby. Dale, Jr. is a big boy and most cops ain't gonna provoke him. They mostly like dogs anyway. ANd they ALL like Marilyn! Some of 'em like guitars. I sang for one on the side of the road one time, cause he asked if I knew any Hank Williams songs. Of course I do, so I sang him a couple and we talked and laughed and he told me to take it easy and slow down, or I'd be joinin' Hank Senior soon!

Don't never threaten the cop. Don't threaten to sue him, or tell him to take off his badge and fight you like a man or none of that foolishness. He'll bust a cap in your head for sure. Even if you ain't did nothin' wrong, don't argue with the cop. He will think you're provokin' him an' will write you up for everything he can.

Don't get funny or smart: He ain't in no laughin' mood.

Don't tell him you ain't did nothin' wrong. He thinks you DID or he wouldna pulled you over in the first place.

Don't tell him you're friends with a cop, or your neighbor is a cop. He ain't care who's a cop. You ain't one and that is all that matters.

Don't get mouthy or argue with him. He'll just lock you up for it. Even if you think he stopped you cause you're a Brit or if you are black, don't tell him that. Tell the judge later. You just ain't want that cop gettin mad at you an' writin' you up for more than he planned on.

Also, that cop mighta just covered a fatal accident by someone drivin' like you, and he might be tryin' to protect you from your own bad drivin'. They done that to me plenty of times, so I am used to it. I might be speedin' a little or tailgatin' someone an' they pull me over to keep me from killin' myself.

He mighta just busted someone and been in fight, and is full of adrenaline still and be ready to jump on you like flies on stink. Help him to calm down. Be all on the humble.

See, cops go from bein' bored stiff to bein' all excited in just a few seconds. He mighta been sittin' there half asleep when you sped by, an' his radar beeped an' woke him up. Now he's all hyped and he ain't know if you're a bad guy or just a speeder. Just a bleep from his radar gun or a few words over a radio gets his heart rate boosted up, and if he's full of coffee and sugar from donuts or somethin', he will definitely be on the edge by the time he pulls you over.

Think about it like this, 'specially when you're down here in Nanjemoy. We're out in the STICKS, Tondy. How would YOU like to be a cop pullin' over a carload of drunk rednecks at two in the mornin ' who don't want to be stopped, and knowing that your back up cop might be 15 minutes away - and asleep or hookin' up with his girlfriend?

That's what he's dealin' with out here, and that could get a man shot. It has before, an' it won't be the last time. You don't want to be stopped by a scared cop, for sure.

So stay in the car, let him see your hands, no fast moves, call him "Sir" and just get on with it. That's the safest thing here in the USA. You ain't wanna get shot while you're over here. Play it safe, an' be on the lookout for cops.

Summer Break: Continued - Doc and Marilyn in Alabama, Florida and Waffle House...

Wednesday, July 14, 2010 1:35 PM Posted by Tondeleo Lee Thomas

Tondeleo: In my last post, Doc and Big Dave were guzzling "skin fast drinks" (Slimfast) in an effort to get skinny fast. I spoke with Doc on my mobile last night, and he got me up to date on his and Marilyn's activities. I haven't been able to visit them in the States this Summer like I would like to, and have been staying in touch with my mobile, and recording our calls, and Marilyn emails pictures to me from time to time.

Doc: Well, Tondy, me an' Big Dave gave up on that skinfast. We drank about two cases a day of that stuff and it didn't make neither one of us skinny. I done lost maybe 5 pounds, but also I was workin' a lot and it's been hot so I might've just sweated off five pounds (that's less than half stone). Big Dave got tired of drinkin' it and he gave up, too. I think that Skinfast is more made for women.

Well, you know me an' Marilyn went over to Alabama for a week an' had a good time an' met some good people. Their cookin' is pretty good down there an' everywhere you go is Waffle Houses so we ate good. I like a good sit-down restaurant when we is travelin'.doc stevens waffle house

Waffle House has good food pretty reasonable and they got enough different kinds of food that you ain't got to eat no where else. You can eat there mornin' noon and night and it is always pretty good. Matter o' fact, Tondy, you can go to a Waffle House after playin' somewhere an' they will still be open. Ain't nobody rushin' you outta there, neither. Marilyn likes 'em real good, too. They got a lot of her favorites there, an' if she brings some of her friends along, it's cheap enough where they can pay for they's own food an' I ain't got to ante up for it.

You name it, they got it all. Eggs, ham, steak, grits, bacon, hamburgers, fries, waffles, of course, an' pancakes an' ice cream. They got anything a man could want. I really ain't know why they got so many other restaurants out there, 'ceptin some people from up north ain't ascovered Waffle Houses yet. But down south, that is pretty much all you see the locals eatin' at.

We played in some places in Alabama and also outside and the people liked us real good. They was pretty good to us in the money department, but mostly they ain't much money in Alabama.

We went to Florida like I said, an' we got a real good response there. They ain't never heard no one what plays an' sings like me an' Marilyn, so they treated us real good an' got us in some indoor places an' clubs an' venues. We stayed down there a while but then got homesick, plus I had some jobs to do back home, fixin' cars so we had to come back up here to Maryland. One thing I don't like is that they ain't no Waffle Houses here what I know of. But I was glad to see my dogs again an' Marilyn was glad to see her boyfriend again. That long legged crawdaddy missed her!

That boy what she is seein' is six foot two an' is crazy 'bout her. He is all right. If he weren't he wouldn't be seein' her. She is picky about men an' has higher standards than God almost - well, maybe she DOES have higher standards than God, 'cause HE will forgive some things that Marilyn won't, I'll tell you what! She ain't too forgivin' when it comes to how a man can act when he is her beau.

Well, that's it, Tondy. We got some inside places to play at an' a couple parties an' two vestibules (festivals) in the next few weeks, so it should be good.