But You Wouldn't Want to Live There
November 20, 2010 10:47 AM   Subscribe

Perhaps Rochester, New Hampshire isn't the most exciting place on Earth, but that doesn't stop whomever writes the police log.
• 3:12 p.m. — On Winter Street by Fisher fields, two boys battle, neither yields. But a crowd and both the bruisers, disappear before the cruisers.
• 10:32 p.m. — On Tonka Street, a woman asks a neighbor if he needs "to light up" his old Camaro every night as it shakes her trailer. His answer appears to be in the affirmative
• 4:30 p.m. — A pit bull's on the Common, when no dog should ever be
• 5:36 p.m. — Screams erupt on Lafayette, with tinkling glass. A fight? You bet.
posted by yerfatma (59 comments total) 120 users marked this as a favorite

 
1:02 a.m. — At Lilac Mall there is a truck, where sleeps a man down on his luck, he's homeless and has little dough — he's moved along, where did he go?

Haha, these are awesome.
posted by gemmy at 10:53 AM on November 20, 2010 [3 favorites]


2:05 p.m. — A minivan takes out a mailbox on Chestnut Hill Road, veers into a ditch, recovers and heads toward Farmington.
posted by griphus at 10:53 AM on November 20, 2010


10:30 p.m. — Someone on Chestnut Street has hit another person with a log.
posted by Your Time Machine Sucks at 10:56 AM on November 20, 2010 [4 favorites]


Heh. Sorry, one more:

7:04 p.m. — At Halloween upon a street where youngsters go for trick or treat, a worried parent calls the cops, his kid's been handed Hall's Cough Drops. (A curiosity has gripped us — cherry, mint or eucalyptus?) Dad makes the point it's medication and not the stuff of celebration. Police check out this plot of terror and find it was simple error.
posted by gemmy at 10:59 AM on November 20, 2010 [22 favorites]


This reminds me of the similar Police Log funnery over at the Arcata Eye.
posted by Myca at 10:59 AM on November 20, 2010 [4 favorites]


1:49 p.m. — A man loads a gun on a grassy knoll off Gonic Road.

Aha. Mystery solved!
posted by ericb at 11:03 AM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


Related: the Arcata Eye's police blotter (Arcata, CA).

From the October 23rd edition:
Boggled Brainpan Bypassed By Body Electric

• Friday, September 24 2:15 a.m. A donut shop’s serene surreality was ruptured by an out-of-control drunken hooligan. Pickled beyond reason, police bypassed his brainstem by hotwiring his nervous system. The electrical override enabled arrest and hospitalization.

• Tuesday, September 14 4:02 p.m. A reckless wheelchair driver careened in and out of traffic at Buttermilk Lane and Bayside Road. He was advised to stay out of the roadway.

10:06 p.m. A ball player claimed he’d been assaulted by an umpire at the Community Center.

• Thursday, September 16 10:50 a.m. A patron at a downtown venue claimed he’d been “singled out” among many similarly misbehaving attendees, and brutalized with resulting neck damage. Police determined moral equivalency – that it was mutual combat ’twixt this distinguished denizen and the bouncer, and at that point the victim declined further action.

2:31 p.m. A “possible woman” was reported behaving crazily in Valley West. First she ran in circles around a pole, then played with a piece of string as though teasing a cat, just without a key ingredient – the cat. She then plopped down in the grass near a motel where she wasn’t a guest and didn’t have grass-sitting privileges. When emergency forces arrived, the woman was running laps in front of the motel. She was taken to a mental health facility.
Et cetera.
posted by notyou at 11:04 AM on November 20, 2010 [5 favorites]


There are no small stories, only writers who don't approach their subject as a combination Edward Gorey, Edward Lear, and insane person.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:05 AM on November 20, 2010 [3 favorites]


Dammit, Myca.
posted by notyou at 11:05 AM on November 20, 2010


Rochester, New Hampshire -- birthplace of Lyndon H. LaRouche.
posted by ericb at 11:07 AM on November 20, 2010


A Moores Court man reports his medication has been stolen. "By his E/G," says the log, which may mean ex-girlfriend or elderly grandma.

Dammit, enquiring minds WANT TO KNOW.
posted by not_on_display at 11:11 AM on November 20, 2010


This is so wonderful.
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 11:15 AM on November 20, 2010


The Arcata Eye has physically hurt me with laughter before. I think it was the Police Log that spoke of confused dogs during a police encounter with vagrants "experiencing dognitive dissonance." On the other hand, the homeless population in Arcata has complained about the tone of the reports, so there's that.
posted by Countess Elena at 11:17 AM on November 20, 2010


10:30 p.m. — Someone on Chestnut Street has hit another person with a log.

I think my favorite thing about this one is that it could be taken to mean that this is not the first time someone on Chestnut Street has hit someone else with a log.
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 11:19 AM on November 20, 2010 [9 favorites]


Recently we had this doozie on our October blotter in Missoula, MT:

200 Block of Pattee Street - Nazi hat worn to Halloween party stolen by Jewish Dracula.
posted by ikahime at 11:23 AM on November 20, 2010 [14 favorites]


11:20 a.m. — A Milton Road man reports an attempted scam in which he is supposed to wire cash bail to Spain to release his grandson from the clutches of Canadian police.


The Spanish Prisoner
in action? Someone call David Mamet!
posted by Diablevert at 11:23 AM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


200 Block of Pattee Street - Nazi hat worn to Halloween party stolen by Jewish Dracula.

Life is grand. Absolutely, positively grand.
posted by eeeeeez at 11:27 AM on November 20, 2010 [2 favorites]


7:51 p.m. — At Frisbie, a juvenile is treated for a blow to the head with a tire iron.

However great Rochester may be, I want NO part of their treatment program for head wounds.
posted by ZaneJ. at 11:27 AM on November 20, 2010 [15 favorites]


Perfidious animals!

5:37 a.m. — An old calico cat on Dreyer Way is thought to be injured and in distress. An officer finds it is fine and napping in a driveway.

11:46 a.m. — At Rochester Residence Inn a lady takes pity on a stray kitten, which repays her kindness by scratching her baby.

1:11 p.m. — A snake has appeared in front of Kelly Gymnastics and is freaking people out.

4:30 p.m. — A pit bull's on the Common, when no dog should ever be.

5:56 p.m. — A calf flirts with fate on Governor's Road.

6:25 p.m. — A coyote checks out a Richardson Street yard.

6:58 p.m. — Music cranks on Richardson Street. Tsk. Tsk. Don't spook the coyote.

That last one actually made me laugh out loud.

3:42 a.m. — On Blackwater Road a dog called Kissyface has gone missing. Kissyface's owner calls later to say that Kissyface was hiding in the house all the time.

1:39 p.m. — On Lafayette Street, loose dog bites walked dog.

Also: 5:57 p.m. — A 9-year-old won't eat his chow, he mouths off to his mom, and how! An officer has a powwow. The kid will eat his dinner now.
posted by maudlin at 11:31 AM on November 20, 2010 [2 favorites]


For those of you who have nothing to do today.

Now will someone PLEASE make an RSS feed or something so I can check on this weekly?
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 11:32 AM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


7:51 p.m. — A gray cat with orange eyes is missing from Eastern Avenue. It is an indoor cat, or used to be.
posted by buzzv at 11:36 AM on November 20, 2010 [10 favorites]


finding out that people were looking everywhere for a dog named kissyface at 3:42 in the morning makes me think this world isn't such a shitty place after all
posted by facetious at 11:36 AM on November 20, 2010 [5 favorites]


11:53 p.m. — At Bridle Woods, a man in his early 20s has been waltzing in the parking lot by himself for 45 minutes. He's no longer dancing with the stars when police check it out.
posted by Schadenfreude at 11:47 AM on November 20, 2010 [3 favorites]


Novels in three lines.

"Because of his poster opposing the strikebreakers, the students of Brest lycee hissed their teacher, M. Litalien, an aide to the mayor."

"While thundering for the Republic, a 300-year-old cannon exploded in Chatou, but no one was hurt."

"After finding a suspect device on his doorstep, Friquet, a printer in Aubusson, filed a complaint against persons unknown."

"Sand and only that was the content of two suspect packages that yesterday morning alarmed Saint-Germain-en-Laye."
posted by kenko at 11:48 AM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


10:30 p.m. — Someone on Chestnut Street has hit another person with a log.

"We call her the Log Lady"
posted by Greg Nog at 11:59 AM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


"At Dick Poulin Chrysler, someone has jacked up a car and stolen a tire. On the plus side, they left the jack."

Love that. Positive to the end...
posted by bitter-girl.com at 12:00 PM on November 20, 2010


After a party on Schley Street, featuring public urination, Michael James Watson, 19, of 37 Patton St. is charged with resisting arrest and possession of alcohol (internal); Amber Ortegon, 20 (and very, very nearly 21) of 63 Walnut St. is charged with unlawful possession of alcohol; and John Adrien Mosandel, 20, of 476 Portland Ave., A, Rollinsford is charged with unlawful possession of alcohol and arrested on a warrant for — unlawful possession.

Anonymous Police Log Writer? Let it be known that a stranger on the internet loves you.
posted by scody at 12:04 PM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


7:20 p.m. — A large man selling steaks door-to-door on Green Street meets with suspicion.

9:23 a.m. — A North Main Street front door is smashed with a bat and a man enters. A lady employs the F word in a terse instruction to leave, and he runs off.


Oh yes, this delivers. Bravo.
posted by Infinite Jest at 12:14 PM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


My favourite has to be this one:

10:03 a.m. — The request for an officer purportedly comes from the Walmart Nail Salon but management says nothing has been filed.

posted by aclevername at 12:19 PM on November 20, 2010 [15 favorites]


5:57 p.m. — A 9-year-old won't eat his chow, he mouths off to his mom, and how! An officer has a powwow. The kid will eat his dinner now.

Sheer brilliance.
posted by cmyk at 12:42 PM on November 20, 2010


I can see why they called the cops when someone was roaming the streets crying for kissyface.
posted by benzenedream at 12:45 PM on November 20, 2010 [2 favorites]


from the sierra county, nm sentinal: "an elderly woman of elm street reported to officer ontiveros that someone has been breaking into her home at night and letting the hems down on her dresses."
posted by kitchenrat at 1:07 PM on November 20, 2010 [2 favorites]


A 9-year-old won't eat his chow, he mouths off to his mom, and how! An officer has a powwow. The kid will eat his dinner now.

---BurmaShave!

These definitely have an old-fashioned BurmaShave/Ogden Nash flavor.

I approve of this.
posted by emjaybee at 1:20 PM on November 20, 2010


10:02 p.m. — On Wakefield Street, teens siphon gas from one vehicle to another and somehow manage to start a fire.

yea, somehow (!) lmao

this is all so great, esp. the rhyming ones, damn great. thanks for posting
posted by victors at 1:20 PM on November 20, 2010


For somereadon I'm hering all of these in the Cryptkeeper's voice.
posted by The Whelk at 1:31 PM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


reason, hearing wow codeine is an adventure.
posted by The Whelk at 1:33 PM on November 20, 2010


I am in love. There's something so joyous about someone having such fun with words in such an unlikely context!

I love the elegant simplicity of this one: "6:01pm: A Patton Street pumpkin is pinched from a porch."

Tongue-twister, indeed.
posted by artemisia at 1:49 PM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


Imagine a town where the cops have enough time to investigate napping elderly cats, attempt to corral wayward chihuahuas, and visit houses at dinnertime to admonish small boys to clean their plates! The obvious pleasure the writer takes in his/her wordplay is delightful. I agree with emjaybee--the rhymes are very Ogden Nash-esque. Hilarious stuff.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 1:57 PM on November 20, 2010 [4 favorites]


"9:51 p.m. — On Pine Street a gentleman's wife is threatening to assault his girlfriend. Hmm."
posted by maryr at 2:04 PM on November 20, 2010


Oh! I posted far too soon.

"11:50 a.m. — On Ten Rod Road a seaplane from Baxter Lake is said to be flying far too low over homes. An officer, not ducking the issue, investigates."
posted by maryr at 2:07 PM on November 20, 2010


Rochester is every bit as exciting as you might suspect.
posted by ChuraChura at 2:36 PM on November 20, 2010


Now will someone PLEASE make an RSS feed or something so I can check on this weekly?

Not an RSS feed, but Officer Editor is now on the beat. Keep the tip line burning.
posted by Scoop at 2:58 PM on November 20, 2010


This, this is so awesome.
posted by Elmore at 3:26 PM on November 20, 2010


9:29 a.m. — On Crown Point Road a big white rooster, called Duke, ain't crowing like it used ter. It's missing.

I am *dying*
posted by jinjo at 4:32 PM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


Rhyming "gripped us" and "eucalyptus" is excellent.

1:49 p.m. — A man loads a gun on a grassy knoll off Gonic Road.

Aha. Mystery solved!


Ah, yes, JFK was in New Hampshire all along! He must've staged this elaborate, conspiracy-tinged event with a stunt double in Dallas, all in order to be able to duck out from the spotlight quietly and fulfill his lifelong dream of starting a maple syrup business in New England as a simple, anonymous everyman. Oh, how he and Jackie O. used to muse about their imagined fantasy life together as humble servants to the sugary amber tree sap that seemed to increasingly occupy their every waking thought. It wouldn't have been a glamorous life, but even if the world knew, nobody would blame them or say they were wanting of pancake toppings- when it comes down to it, isn't that enough? That was the lesson they so longed to teach the world, in their own humble, completely sneaky way. But JFK was foiled by his own clever conspiratorial device, something he dreamed up himself while on one of his frequent, week-long heroic-dose opium binges to throw everyone off the trail: a shooter on the grassy knoll! Like a good little Manchurian candidate, he must be returning to the scene of the crime. It's enough to make one nostalgic for the day when the CIA really understood the art of pathos, and how to weave a tragic tale and tie it all together in a way that leaves your audience floored and wanting more. Like a Greek tragedy with the story arc of an episode of Seinfeld. Bravo!

Well, it's so obvious. Anyone would have put the pieces together eventually.
posted by krinklyfig at 5:28 PM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


6:01 p.m. — A Patton Street pumpkin is pinched from a porch.

That sentence is both pleasingly plosive and as comforting as an old sweater on a chilly day. I could read these all evening.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 5:46 PM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


Sunday, Oct. 31

12:00 a.m. — Two gents slug it out in the middle of downtown North Main Street.

posted by dhens at 6:36 PM on November 20, 2010 [1 favorite]


(November 11)

1:10 a.m. — Walgreens would like two shoplifter wannabes moved from the parking lot.

2:08 a.m. — On Academy Street an officer pays his respects to the remains of a pumpkin.

posted by dhens at 6:38 PM on November 20, 2010


Man I wish Foster's web site wasn't so awful. It makes it hard to find the gems:

6:50 p.m. — A lady has taken joint compound out of a man's truck at Home Depot. He calls again to say things have been smoothed over.
11:43 p.m. — On Lafayette Street five folks fight, and flail their fists with all their might. A lady's punched, her head is singing, but now she's up again and swinging.

And the author clearly knows the area well:

10:37 p.m. — On South Main Street, two people are thought to be siphoning gas from a vehicle. Indeed they are, they say, as the car is going to the scrap yard tomorrow.
8:09 p.m. — A man in an orange shirt battles a man with a white shirt on North Main Street, but at least they have shirts.

11:29 p.m. — At Royal Crest Mobile Home Park, a wild black bear does roam, a lady's fearful for her son who has not yet come home. The police advice is bar the doors, and we add, while we're at it, lock up your porridge and make sure what e'er you do, don't pat it.
10:11 a.m. — Someone has rung to say a fat man is scampering off with a yellow ladder from the North Main Street bridge construction site. Police take steps to find it.
posted by yerfatma at 6:48 PM on November 20, 2010


One of the great joys of having moved to a small rural town (pop. 812) is reading the police blotter in the weekly paper.

Lots of reports of people locked out of their cars (not only do the cops show up - they help with the effort), missing wallets turned in to the officials, and other such wonders. Love!!!

One of my recent favorites is an entry from a nearby town's police blotter.

From Blaine, WA:
Blaine police were alerted to the screams of children. They raced to the scene and found a kindergarten classroom in pandemonium. “Officers were not able to contact the parents of the intruder, and took him in to custody. Or,” police cautioned, “it could have been a her.” Police weren’t sure until Animal Control arrived and collected the kitten. “It had survived,” relieved officers reported, “being smothered in little kids’ kisses and tickles, and was sent off to find a new home.”
posted by ErikaB at 7:37 PM on November 20, 2010 [4 favorites]


this.
this is one of those things that makes it worth staying alive. thank you, yerfatma.
posted by lapolla at 9:17 PM on November 20, 2010


Ah-hah! From the police log of June 20th to 26th, published July 10th:

The Rochester police log is compiled by Rochester Times editor John Nolan.

The genius has a name.

From that same entry:
9:07 p.m. - On Lafayette Strret lurks a mattress and on that mattress sit some toddlers. The owner is asked to move kit and kaboodle.
posted by Diablevert at 10:38 PM on November 20, 2010


The New Yorker, in the days of manual typesetting, would have regular types of filler items for the ends of articles. One of these was invariably titled Constabulary Notes from All Over, primarily utterly pointless or at least nonplussing items from New England small town newspaper blotters. Mrs. Griggs of Canterbury Road reported the theft of a cat. Investigation found a dead goose and a sleeping cat. That sort of thing.

Anyway, that pretty much disappeared from the magazine when they went to computer typography, so ... thanks.

Also, our local crime reporter puts some of the odder items into a "blotter" blog entry every week or so. He's nowhere near this creative, but maybe sending this to him will kick things up a notch, if they let him....
posted by dhartung at 10:43 PM on November 20, 2010


I thought the police blotter in the Carmel Pine Cone was a fun read, but this beats it hands-down.
posted by rednikki at 11:01 PM on November 20, 2010


"7:39 p.m. — At Central Square a man is on his hands and knees. He is either paying homage to Parson Main or drunk. Police judge it to be the latter and take him into protective custody for alcoholism."

Beautiful.
posted by azpenguin at 12:30 AM on November 21, 2010


I lived in Rochester for a while, and this was a very, very popular read. More than a few people, upon learning that I was a newcomer, checked to make sure I was reading the police blotter in Fosters.

If you're ever there, you have to go to the Old Oak Tavern on N Main.
posted by lunasol at 7:58 AM on November 21, 2010


Increased activity in Factory Court this summer prompted an editorial that seems in the tone of the police log. Is J.N. (seemingly John Nolan) our intrepid reporter? Oh, curses, I see that Diablevert found him already. And here I was feeling clever... ah well, the editorial is still a nice accompaniment to the logs.
posted by maryr at 3:26 PM on November 21, 2010


The Skagway (AK) Police Blotter is pretty good, too, though a bit drier. Unfortunately, they're on to us voyeurs, and they make you pay for a newspaper subscription to read the full monty.

An example, from the most recent posting:

November 1
An officer assisted a woman whose dog had locked her out of her vehicle.
November 4
An officer assisted a man whose dog had locked him out of his vehicle.

posted by agog at 7:37 PM on November 21, 2010 [1 favorite]


While not as rhyme-tastic as Rochester's police blotter, Tweets Of Old manages to pull out some great lines from old US newspapers, listing the state of origin and date at the end of each tweet:

"Beware of the man who exhales the odor of the Bermuda onion; he is jealous and given to rash deeds. NY1902"

"A fair belle of Albany is in town, and has just been playing the wild with our boys' palpitating apparatuses. GA1876"

"A friendly wrestle ended in the disembowelling of Grant Pyatt by Bruce Alfrey on October 31. MO1892"

"As peaceful as they look, there is something about oysters that engenders strife. NC1890"

"The Hamilton County Beekeepers will investigate the charge that a committee member had made derogatory statements. OH1904"

"Young John T. Campbell has bought himself a new duster and is trying to grow a mustache.TN1881"

...And particularly internet-appropriate:
"Stop a moment and consider how many unnecessary things you say in a day. IA1902"
posted by D.Billy at 6:06 AM on November 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


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