November 14, 2012 1:24 PM Subscribe
When they take my shoelaces and belt, I realise that this is more serious than I had thought.
I am in a Manhattan precinct cell, early on a Sunday morning in August, having been stopped for making an illegal turn in my car. The officer who has stopped me takes my licence and (for complicated reasons involving my sister’s mother-in-law) Texas registration, goes back to his vehicle for a bit, and then returns to my car.
‘Sir, I’m going to have to ask you to step out of the car.’
I’ve watched television. They must be checking my sobriety.
‘Sir, are you aware that your licence has been suspended in the state of New York?’
I am not aware of that. That’s going to mean a hell of a fine.
Another police car pulls up behind his, lights flashing.
‘Sir, please turn and place your hands behind your back.’
I turn and prepare to recite the alphabet backwards while standing on one leg (as I’ve seen on television). Something clicks around my wrists. Handcuffs. I’ve never been in handcuffs before. I’ve always prided myself on my positive relationship with the police.
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