Wednesday 21 May 2008

Won't The Past Go Away?

I'm a bit too shaken right now to go visiting.
I don't know how I feel.

I've just put my own flat back into shape.

I didn't really know whether I wanted to write about this at all, but I felt you all deserved some explanation and I think I do want to talk about it, just not to anyone in Real Life.

May 14th.
It passed without me twigging. But it shouldn't have done. May 14th.

May 14th is that special anniversary.

On May 14th 2004, the Judge said Four Years.

On May 14th 2006, I walked free.

On May 14th 2007, I no longer had to report to a probation officer- although in fact, they cancelled my probation long before that.

I never stopped to think that in a technical sense, the sentence didn't end until May 14th 2008.

I have said goodbye to Ecstasy. I have said goodbye to Cocaine.

Partly because I've outgrown them. Partly because I've found things to fulfill me that aren't those two substances. But mainly, because the game just isn't worth the risks. Even using these things leaves yourself wide open.

I made a decision my thirtieth should mark an end to even sporadic recreational usage, and it's something I mean to stick to.
In spite of the drivel talked about both those chemicals, they are very easy to walk away from in some ways. They aren't physically addictive, the attraction is psychological. I'm not saying I've suddenly decided they are evil- I haven't, it's just that while the law is what it is, I now have too much too lose for brief moments of chemical high.

My bank balance, my career, this blog and the people in my life, are all sound reasons for giving up on a ten-odd year love/hate relationship with chemicals.

And I don't really miss them.

Three times in the last two months, I have refused offers on a Friday night to go to a party, where such activities would be going on. And on all occasions I have said 'No, I'm really not doing any of that any more.'

I came home today to find my door had been forced. It had been pulled to, but it was open.
The place had been turned over.

OK, it was a tip this morning. But this looked like the work of burglars.

Yes, they'd been through everything. Everything.

They took nothing.

But they left me two souvenirs.

A pile of dirty blue rubber gloves by my waste bin.

And a warrant lieing on a chair in the living room. A warrant to search the premises to look for controlled drugs and evidence of drug dealing equipment.

A little note 'We searched your place for drugs. There weren't any. Goodbye!'

Why? I asked myself.
Why do this to me? I'm thirty now. I was twenty four back then, when I was arrested.

I tidied up. I smoked- I've smoked about ten fags this evening and had about three coffees. My nerves are all over the shop.
Could someone have it in for me?

It was only when I looked at the warrant again, I saw the reason.
The warrant was applied for on May 14th, 2008.

So a computer somewhere says- 'His sentence is totally expired- give him a routine check.'

While I'm at work. Which involves leaving me with a front door which is a security risk and I'll have to repair out of my own pocket.
And the sense my privacy has been invaded, that people I don't even know have been going through my drawers.

My home. Where I feel safe. My home, which I work very hard to pay the rent for. Legally.

Tonight, I really DO feel Crushed by Ingsoc.

But I actually feel better now I've talked to you lot about it.

I'll be OK tomorrow :)

But I've only got one thing to say to my burglars in blue.



Anonymous said...

If that is what a routine check is like what must it be like for real? Unbelievable. I guess they want it to be a surprise but still they could do it when you were home and not leave your place unsecured.

Hopefully you will not fall off their radar completely.

I think after your experience, if I were you I would never have touched anything illegal after May 14, 2006. You do have too much to lose. It's a wise decision you have made. Stick to it no matter what.

Hang tough Crushed, you've been through worse and survived.

Anonymous said...


I can't believe they did that to you. It's insane. You served your time, don't they have better things to do? I wonder if this goes on over here in the states...

Very big brother scary there. I remember watching a show about how they're putting cameras all over London and the other major cities.

Still shaking my head...
What a shit thing to come home to.

Anonymous said...

I am amazed that the police have legislative permission to do that.

Can you check without compromising yourself?

Can't they call you first and ask that you're home?

What if they planted some?

Seriously. Follow this up.

Anonymous said...

You tell 'em Crushie!

I guess cleaning up after searching one's apartment for drugs is not in their job description. I'm hearing arrogant and rude, but I don't think they'd give two hoots what names we throw at them, they aren't going to change. It's just a job that they are doing...don't take it personal! Cheer up and be proud in the fact you and your home is clean as a whistle eh? :)

Anonymous said...

Our past shapes us to the people we are today. The pain, the happiness, the sorrow, the breaking and the climbing right back up - every moment of every day that was forced us forward and made us just what we are - ourselves.

I'm sorry about the mess. I'll be over tonight to help you clean. How's that? :)

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with Ms Smack and Kate. Hold your head up and be proud of who you are today.

Anonymous said...

This is outrageous.

On what grounds did they do this? Who signed the warrant and on what basis? Was it a Magistrate or can an Inspector do it these days? They have damaged your home - are they going to pay for it? They left it insecure, their job is to protect life and property.

I would make a formal complaint, but then I am bloody minded about such things, I am realistic enough to realise you might not consider that the best course of action. Especially after they randomly trashed your place.

Still I am irritated on your behalf.

Anonymous said...

Ask EK. He knows stuff.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the comments.
Can I say first off, I actually do simply see it as a blatant point of police intimidation, done simply to remind me that 'We got your number, mate. Your slate's clean now, but don't forget us!'

jmb- I agree. They could have waited till I got home, then done it.

I'm hoping that they can't do it again. I'm hoping I will never see or hear from them again.

Fusion- Theydo have better things to do, yes. Catch real criminals. But these days Policework is all about statistics.

It's about maximum arrests for minimum work, so busting child molester rings is not as important as harrassing tax payers known to reasonable people who may have had, and statistically still MIGHT have naughty hobbies.

Our police forces have changed over the last twenty years, and not in a good way.

Ms S- Yes. All they need is a signature from a magistrate and 'reasonable suspicion'. Reasonable suspicion, is the old 'leopard never changes its spots theory'. In other words, its gambling to get a result.

Well, yes, they could do, which is why I'm not putting in a complaint- though The Baker wants me to, because I really don't trust them.

Kate- Yes, it's a job. But I can't help feeling personally, it's an abuse of power.

Well, it's certainly clean now- because I cleaned it last night :)

Heart- This is so. I often say I have no real regrets. But on a night like last night, you just fel completely robbed of your dignity as a human being. Which I guess is part of the point.

Nunyaa- I am, trust me. I know it might seem a wierd thing to be proud of, but I am proud of the way I handled things to have happened in my life.

Rise above it and move on, eh?

Phil- That would not be the best course, my gut tells me. Yes, I'd love them to pay for the lock, but it's just asking for more grief.

I'm afraid I don't really see them as very different to the average nightclub 'doorman', in terms of operating practises.
That's what they recruit these days, and that's what they've got.

Ms S- I'm thinking to just forget it. Seriously.
E-K is a good old-fashioned copper from the days when honest coppers were still a majority. Not sure how true that is today.

Anonymous said...

**** me, CBI, what a bunch of *****.

I hope I have made my feelings clear.

Anonymous said...

useless fucks and they wonder why people dont respect authority anymore...

Anonymous said...

Hmm. It sounded like good news to me. You beat the system; yes, they treated you like a criminal, but you showed them :-) Am glad you were clean. Good for ya!

Anonymous said...

TD- Cheers, it was dis-spriting, certainly- and for obvious reasons, no need for it to be done like that- if it had to be done at all. Myself, I can't see why it had to be done at all.

Mutley- Well, precisely. They don't realise that most people under forty, despise the police- that the commonest terms used in everyday conversation for them are 'The Pigs' and 'The Filth'. There is a strong undercurrent of sentiment which doesn't see them as 'serving the community' ANY community, that is.

And what this actually means, is that should you actually be in a situation where really, you need the help of the law, you are wary about getting them involved. Because you just don't trust them and you don't want to invite them into your life.

I think a lot us now feel about the Police, the way Catholics in the Six counties used to feel about the RUC- I certainly do.
And that's not a good place for a society to be.

Eve- Beat it as much as you ever can. Turn the other cheek can sometimes be a very wise philosophy.
Still, it shows that for all the hype they spin, there are too many police officers with too little to do.
So- where are all these dangerous terorists???

Anonymous said...

What a shitty thing to do.

I'd be very tempted to pursue it, too, but then again I've had my turn bashing heads with a big institution, so maybe you're right to want to leave it.

Anonymous said...

Wow. I can't imagine how shaking that must be. And how frustrating to make that commitment, only to see that others are still waiting for you to slip up. Plus to know that they are wasting their time peeing over your shoulder.

Anonymous said...

I hate this crushed, I see it time and time again. The system the rules, got to follow the procedure! Instead they should be applying common sense!

Hang on in there xx