A lot of years ago, probably fifteen or so, a mate and I were pre-gaming back at my rented house in Huddersfield ahead of a night out at the town’s premier drinking holes. I lived on my own at that point so having mates around for booze and loud music was a common thing. On that particular night I vaguely remember we were smashing down strong glasses of vodka and coke, whilst listening to Coal Chamber or some other late 90s mosher tuneage.
My house was a 5 minute drive from the town center, so as we were both raging on booze (and planning on getting utterly spangled) we chose to get a bus down into town. As was pretty normal for me, I got as much vodka down my throat as possible before we left the house and headed for the bus stop.
We got on the bus, which was pretty busy, and my mate didn’t need to pay as he was (probably still is) a Police Officer. The plus side of this for him is free travel, but the payoff is that the bus driver now knows he has a copper on board, who can be called on in the event of trouble.
As it transpired, there was trouble. The driver had looked in his mirror and spotted a kid at the back of the bus, drinking what looked like booze from a glass bottle. He told the kid that the bus was going nowhere until the he got off it. The kid wasn’t happy and a whole slanging match began, with insults being passed the full length of the bus, and me and my mate sat somewhere in the middle, listening to the whole thing escalate.
The kid eventually headed down towards the front of the bus to confront the driver, who he claimed was making things up, and my poor mate decided it was time for him to step in. He got up and approached the lad, showing him his Police ID and calmly explaining that he’s a police officer and that he just wanted to diffuse the situation. He was on the cusp of reaching a compromise between the two of them – which involved the driver letting the kid stay on the bus as long as the arguing stopped – when I suddenly decided, in my drunken wisdom, that it was time for me to intervene and give this town a new hero.
I got up, grabbed the lad, and shouted “I’M A COPPER, AND I’M GOING TO NEED YOU TO LEAVE THIS BUS RIGHT NOW SIR – OTHERWISE YOU’LL BE ARRESTED!”
My mate, the real cop, went bright red and started shouting “Shut up Jon! Just sit the fuck down!”.
The kid wasn’t having it either. I’m too short for a copper to start with, and I evidently didn’t have a clue what I was doing. Eventually my mate managed to shut me up and get me to sit down, allowing him to turn his attention back to the proper problem in hand – and not the one created by his drunk idiot mate.
I had visions of the whole bus cheering as I escorted the trouble-maker from the bus and threw him into the police station. “Book him!”
Instead I just ended up looking like a tit and totally embarrassing my mate. I found out years later that my mate’s experience with me that day had become somewhat legend throughout the corridors of the West Yorkshire Police Stations.
No real conclusion here – just another example of why stopping drink was probably the right decision for me.
I have to wonder, though, what would have happened if my plan on the bus had have worked? Maybe it would have been the start of something new and amazing for me and for Huddersfield.
Maybe, just maybe, there’s still a West Yorkshire town out there missing it’s superhero…
P.S – These blogs are liable to potentially get a bit less frequent over the coming months. I’ll aim to keep it weekly but these daily early morning writing sessions (see here) are KILLING ME!