Category Archives: Mack Smasher: Renegade Straw Cop

Mack Smasher: Renegade Straw Cop – Chapter 3

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Chapter 3
Her name was Quan. Rosie Quan. She’d only been my partner for a week, but whenever I looked into her eyes, it felt like we’d known each other for a lifetime. There was something about her that made me feel safe, and at home. Like I could tell her anything and she’d still stick by my side, albeit begrudgingly.
Did I mention she was a tall drink of water? And boy howdy, was I ever thirsty. Ah, but that was crazy talk. Dipping your pen in the company ink is a good way to write your own death warrant, or worse, your co-worker’s. After all, you can’t save your partner’s ass if you’re too busy staring at it.
We met up later that afternoon and I can’t deny it. As I sat across from her, listening to her hammer me over the morning’s events, all I wanted to do was stop her and ask if I could dip my eggroll into her spicy Szcechuan sauce. Would that have been racist? Most assuredly, but it was a sentiment that came from a place of love, and if loving is wrong, then this guy doesn’t want to be right. At any rate, I held that comment back as the last thing I needed was another letter of reprimand from human resources in my file. I already had enough to paper my walls at home.
“Let me get this straight,” Rosie said. “A friend of yours in the seventh precinct told you that Lt. Jeffries’ unit brought in a high-level suspect. Wanted all over the world.”
“Yes,” I said.
“Tons of blow.”
“Right.”
“Heads in the fridge.”
“Correct.”
“Video evidence showing the suspect in the act of murder.”
“True.”
“A living victim saved in the nick of time who was willing to testify.”
“You got it.”
Rosie shook her head in disgust. Her disapproval frustrated me, but it was hard to be mad at her. She looked so cute in her fancy business lady attire.
“And so, after hearing about this rare, virtually unheard of mountain of damning, sure to convict evidence, the only thing that caught your attention was the fact that your source in the seventh precinct told you that when the suspect was brought into the station, she was sucking on a plastic straw inside a take-out cup?”
“Yes.”
“And with laser focus, you honed in on that straw and nothing but that straw, the department’s priorities be damned?”
“That’s about the straight and skinny of it, sister.”
Rosie sighed. “I don’t know, Mack. Sounds like Lt. Jeffries was right to be angry.”
“Sure,” I said. “Take his side.”
“I’m not taking sides. It’s just, Jesus. If anything, it sounds like he was remarkably restrained.”
“Whatever.”
“Had I been in his shoes, I would have pistol whipped you until you stared coughing up blood.”
“Yeah, well, maybe I would have deserved it. Maybe I would have done that to me if I had been him as well, but I’m not him, I’m me and as me I have different priorities, see?”
We were sitting at a table in a Moonbeam Coffee. You know, that chain of shops that hipsters love to congregate in? They were all around us. Wearing their fedoras, eating their artisanal scones, typing away on their laptops, each one working on either a novel that will never be published, or a screenplay for a movie that will never be seen. Worse, they were all drinking cups full coffee with a dash of this and a sprig of that. Try ordering just a straight, black coffee in this place and the kids at the bar will look at you like you’re a six-foot tall lizard person wearing polka dot underwear.
Hanging on the wall over the bar, there was a flat screen television. It was playing the news of the day. Reporters were following Kowalski down the steps of the courthouse, each vying to stick a microphone in the jamoke’s face. Eventually, stopped to address the crowd. The short, stubby little prick ran his hand through his bad combover, then spoke.
“Look, everyone. I’m sorry. No, I’m very sorry. I understand that tensions are running high over this case, and that many of Miss Thibodeux’s victims hail from right here in the district. Hell, my secretary has been fielding angry calls from their families all day. But I’m not about to get into the arcane complexities and technicalities of legal procedure. Suffice to say, Lt. Jeffries did a shitty job. I can’t stress this enough, Lt. Neal Jeffries is the one to blame for this mess, so if you want to blame anyone, blame Lt. Neal Jeffries. Further, I would add that I have taken shits that had more structural integrity than the flimsy case Lt. Neal Jeffries built here and in conclusion, this is all the fault of Lt. Neal Jeffries.”
Rosie and I looked away from the television.
“Neal doesn’t deserve this,” Rosie said. “He’s a good man, and his case wasn’t flimsy at all.”
“You know him?” I asked.
“Sure,” Rosie said. Her eyes looked like they were staring off into space, trying to recreate a scene from long ago. “We worked a drug bust together. He said we should wait for backup but back in those days, I was young, dumb, full of cum and didn’t know any better. I went charging in, head first, guns blazing, only for some chump to get the drop on me with a Tec-9. Jeffries saw it before I did. Threw himself in front of me and took the bullet. Thankfully, he was wearing a vest. I doubt I would have been able to forgive myself if I hadn’t.”
I drummed my fingers on the table. “Were you two…”
“What?”
“You know?”
“I know what?”
I rolled my eyes, then inserted my right pointer finger into a circle I made with my left pointer and thumb – the international sign for making whoopie. It was a mistake to do so. It grossed Rosie out.
“Ugh! Of course not!”
“O.K.”
“You’re disgusting!”
“Alright,” I said. “Sheesh. No need to get all worked up about it.”
“What business is it of yours anyway?” Rosie asked.
“It’s not,” I said. “I don’t know. I’m just making conversation.”
“Yeah, well,” Rosie said. “Converse about something else.”
“Fine,” I said. “And don’t worry about it.”
I looked around the room. None of the hipsters were listening. They were all too busy listening to third wave tribal ska fusion on their oversized, overpriced, overhyped, rapper endorsed headphones.
“Can you keep something under your hat?”
“Sure.”
“No, I’m serious. Can I trust you?”
“We’re partners, aren’t we?”
“Past partners have failed me before,” I said.
“Join the club,” Rosie replied.
“OK,” I said. “Between you, me, the four walls, and these dipshit millennials, Jeffries is going to be fine.”
Rosie was understandably skeptical. “He is?
“Yeah,” I said. “You think I would have screwed him over and secured a bloodthirsty psychopath’s release over a straw without a backup plan?”
My partner glared at me as if to say that she and I already knew the answer to that question.
“Fine,” I said. “Yes, I would have, but luckily, I had a backup plan here. The third ex-Mrs. Smasher…”
“Third?”
“Yes.”
“How many ex-Mrs. Smashers are there?”
I looked at my fingers and began to count. “Carry the one, add the remainder and…I don’t know. Too many. What business is it of yours, anyway?”
“It’s not,” Rosie said with a smirk. “Just making conversation.”
“The third ex-Mrs. Smasher is an Israeli national,” I explained. “Used to work at the embassy until she was promoted to a high rank in the Mossad. They’ve got agents en route to Mongolia. They’re going to pick her up the second she lands in Ulaanbaatar.”
“Ulaanbaatar?” Rosie asked.
“Yeah,” I said. “Ulaanbaatar. It’s the capitol of Mongolia. I thought everyone knew that. You don’t know that?”
Rosie cocked her head and looked at me sideways. “Why would I know that?”
“I don’t know. Because…”
“I’m Asian? And Asians know everything about Asia?”
“No.”
“I’m fourth generation American, asshole.”
Suddenly, I realized that holding back on the spicy Szechuan line had been a good judgment call.
“No,” I said. “Because you’re educated. You’ve got that master’s degree and…whatever. Let’s move on. They’re going to grab her, bring her to Tel Aviv and then, I don’t know. Beat her. Torture her. Hook her twat lips up to a car battery. Basically, do a lot of things that are frowned upon here in the states but they’ll get her to talk about all her accomplices and conspirators. They’ll be able to bring down a lot of bad hombres, more than we could have, what with all our civil rights bullshit.”
Rosie pondered what I had just told her. “I suppose that’s good. I mean, the part where a lot of criminals get brought to justice, not the parts about the twat lip torture and the civil rights being bullshit and so on. Still, this doesn’t help Jeffries.”
“It will,” I said. “The third ex-Mrs. Smasher has some pull. She’s going to make sure that the Israeli Prime Minister himself gives a big speech, praising the Mossad for catching Mo-Mo and that they couldn’t have done it without the work Jeffries did in America. Blah, blah, blah, there will be some procedural crap that no one understands but ultimately, he’ll spin a good yarn about how from watching all the details about the case Jeffries built on American TV, Mossad agents were able to construct a profile on Mo-Mo and track her to Mongolia and all that jazz.”
Rosie folded her arms. “Bullshit.”
“Huh?”
“You’re going to sit there and tell me that not only did you orchestrate the release of a mass murderer but that also, you hatched an international espionage plot that involves kidnapping a suspect from a nonextradition country, all over a plastic drinking straw?”
Now I was disgusted. “You talk about straw law ban enforcement like it’s a joke.”
“Well, it is, isn’t it?”
Funny how fleeting feelings can be. One second, I wanted to get down on one knee and propose that Rosie become the next Mrs. Smasher. The next, I wanted to stand up and walk away, leaving her in a cloud of my own dust to contemplate how badly her laisezz faire attitude towards straw crime had disappointed me.
“You think this is some kind of game for me?” I asked.
“No, I just think you’re going overboard,” Rosie answered. “Way overboard. Ridiculously, insanely overboard.”
“One can never be too vigilant when it comes to straw criminals.”
“Straw criminals?” Rosie asked. “Eight days into a new initiative to monitor what essentially boils down to a civil infraction, and you’ve already trashed six department issued cruisers, incinerated three buildings, pulled your gun on twelve minimum wage fast food workers and now this fiasco.”
Rosie looked up at the TV. The media was bending me over and giving my reputation a vigorous pounding, sans lube. The first head on the pundit panel was right-wing blowhard Jim Claymore, a crusty old bastard who looked like he’d been fed one too many cheeseburgers. Funny, you don’t see too many elderly fat people. Their addiction to pizza and curly fries usually cuts them down in middle age, but somehow old Jimbo was still plodding along, I assume thanks to the best doctors his big pile of dough could buy.
“Great,” Jim said. “The far left has finally gotten their wish in the form of Mack Smasher. He’s a jack-booted thug, a Gestapo agent ready to gun down anyone who so much as thinks about sipping on a straw. Come on, people. Is this the America we want? Oh sure, the liberal whack jobs say they’re pro-choice when it comes to abortion but when it comes to deciding whether or not to use a straw to guzzle down a nice, cold glass of lemonade, you’d better chose not to use one lest Mack Smasher kick down your door and blow your face off.”
I leered at the TV. Rosie shot me a look as though she agreed with that clod.
“That’s not true at all.”
Rosie looked at my footwear.
“OK,” I said. “Maybe I do wear jackboots, but only for the heel support and the steel toe. You could drop a hundred wrenches on my toes and I’d be fine.”
“And the other part?” Rosie asked.
“He’s got his facts wrong,” I said.
“Does he?” Rosie asked.
Rosie flashed me the stink-eye. “But…does he?”
“I haven’t shot anyone in the face over a straw,” I said. “Yet.”
Rosie shook her head. The panel continued. Monica Blather, an equally gassy blowhard but on the left side of the aisle. God, that dopey old bag’s glasses were the size of a pair of goggles and I was willing to bet her snootch was filled with more spider webs than a Halloween blow-store. Don’t even get me started on her get-up. Why the hell do liberal broads insist on wearing those Old West Mexican outlaw style poncho sweaters? I’m not trying to offend anyone. I’m just saying I’ve never met a liberal woman over fifty who didn’t dress like The Outlaw Josey Wales.
“I don’t care what Jim says. Cis male scum like him shouldn’t be saying anything as far as my colleagues and I at More Blame for America Now! are concerned. Someone needs to be thinking about the environment. Now, are Mack Smasher’s methods violent? Of course. But is it any less violent to drop a straw in a trash can?”
“It absolutely is,” Jim said.
“Disagreeing with me is violence!” Monica snapped. “Your words are violence!”
Rosie and I returned to our conversation. “Mack…”
To my surprise, she reached across the table and grabbed my hand. “I need to ask you a personal question.
This was it. In my mind, I just knew she was going to ask me to dip my eggroll into her spicy Szechuan sauce.
“Partners shouldn’t keep secrets from each other, should they?”
“No,” I said.
“I never kept secrets from any of my partners,” Rosie said.
“Neither did I,” I replied.
“Good. Can I ask you a personal question?”
Oh man. Here was my big chance.
“Let me stop you right there,” I said. “I already know what you want to ask.”
Rosie let out a sigh of relief. “Thank God.”
“Nine inches,” I said. “Nine and a half on a good day. Shaved. Cut, because I’m no heathen.”
My partner pulled her hand away fast. She looked ready to bolt for the door. “What in the…”
I changed the subject fast. “Sorry. I missed the mark. What do you want to know?”
“What have you got against straws?”
I laughed. “How much time you got?”
“You’re serious?”
“As a heart attack.”
Rosie frowned. “I can’t tell if you’re being serious or engaging in some type of semi-artistic, avant garde performance art. It’s like you’re a bad caricature of a straw law enforcement officer, straight out of a self-published parody novel.”
“Ha,” I said. “Like I’d be caught dead in a self-published novel. It’s traditional publishing for me or bust, baby.”
“Please answer the question.”
“I could ask you the same,” I said. “You volunteered for this assignment, didn’t you?”
“I did,” Rosie said.
“I did too.”
“Right,” Rosie said. “But I’m starting to get the impression that you and I signed up to become Washington, D.C.’s first straw law enforcement officers for very different reasons.”
“You’re going to have to paint this picture by numbers for me, sweetheart,” I said. “If there’s one thing Mack Smasher doesn’t do, it’s abstract watercolors.”
Rosie pointed at me. “See? It’s stuff like that, that creeps me out.”
“What?”
“This,” Rosie said as she waved her hands in my direction. “This whole persona of yours. Your noir style manner of speech. Your tough guy swagger. Your action hero lines. And the whole referring to yourself in the third person thing.”
“If Mack Smasher wants to refer to himself in the third person, then Mack Smasher’s going to refer to himself in the third person.”
“OK,” Rosie said. “Whatever. I signed up for this gig because I’m tired.”
I interrupted immediately. “You’re too young to be tired, doll-face. What are you, 31, 32, 33? No more than thirty-four, tops, I’d wager.”
“Congratulations. You can count.”
“My apologies. When it comes to age, a gentleman never asks and a lady never tells. Ma Smasher taught me better than that and I’m not representing her well at the moment. Please continue.”
“I’ve been through some shit,” Rosie said. “I’m not whining. Every cop has. But every cop has their limit of how much shit they can take and I reached mine long ago. Smasher, I’ve been beaten up, shot at, stabbed twice, thrown out a ten-story building only to fortuitously land on a soft canopy…”
“Pbbhht,” I said, blowing my co-worker a raspberry. “You haven’t lived until you’ve been thown out of a twenty-story window only to fortuitously land on a soft canopy.”
Rosie carried on with her tales of misery and woe. “I’ve been kidnapped by the mob and barely escaped with my life.”
“Who hasn’t?”
“I got into a round robin sword fight with six Yakuza assassins and somehow, miraculously bested all of them.”
“Typical Saturday night for me.”
Rosie was exasperated by my nonchalance. “The Russian mafia swapped out my sister with an exact double who was ordered to kill me.”
I rubbed my pointer finger and thumb together. “You know what this is, kiddo? It’s the world’s smallest violin and it’s playing a sad song for you. Why, if I had a nickel for every time someone close to me was replaced with a phony replica assassin, I’d be a rich man.”
“You know what made me finally decide to slow down?” Rosie asked. “When the Salazar Cartel kidnapped my daughter.”
I raised a quizzical eyebrow. “You have a kid?”
“I do.”
“And here I thought we weren’t keeping secrets.”
“I met you the day after New Year’s, Smasher,” Rosie said. “We hardly know each other. My kid isn’t a secret. She’s just one of many topics of conversation we haven’t had yet.”
“Huh,” I said. “I heard talk of a lady cop who went into full mama bear mode last year. Told to stand down, let the SWAT team handle it, but she went in on her own, iced sixteen narco-terrorists, rescued her kid then set the whole operation ablaze while walking away without looking back at the ensuing explosion. That was you?”
“In the flesh,” Rosie replied. “Why? You don’t think a woman is capable of getting her hands dirty?”
“No,” I said. “I just thought I was the only one who enjoyed walking away from an explosion without looking back.”
“Enjoy is a strong word,” Rosie said. “Smasher, I’m done with that life.”
“You sure about that?” I asked. “A shame to let all that talent go to waste.”
“I’ve done my part to keep this city safe,” Rosie said. “Now all I want is a nice, cushy job where I walk around the city, hand out informational packets on the straw law ban to food service business owners, issue the occasional fine for non-compliance and be home in time to spend a nice evening with my mom and daughter.”
“Your mom?” I asked.
“What’s wrong with that?”
“Nothing,” I said. “I guess I just assumed there was a Mr. Quan somewhere in the picture.”
Rosie laughed. “OK, I suppose I did say there should be no secrets between us.”
“You did.”
“The idiot ran off with a stripper,” Rosie said.
“Been there,” I said. “Done that. Bought the T-shirt.”
“It gets worse,” Rosie said. “He drained our joint bank account, told me he was sorry but this woman as the true love of his life and he hoped I would understand. Three weeks later, I get a call that he’s stranded in Tijuana. She took it all and left him to rot. He asked me to buy him a plane ticket and begged me to take him back.”
“What’d you do?”
Rosie snickered. “Hung up the phone. Haven’t heard from him since.”
“Interesting,” I said. “Oddly, I sympathize with you both. I’ve been on both ends of that phone call.”
“Keeping the ex-Mrs. Smashers a secret from me?”
“No,” I said. “I’d just need at least a year to tell you about all of them.”
We grew quiet. It was weird. We were so new to each other and yet I felt we were already comfortable enough to sit in silence.
“Smasher,” Rosie said. “We’ve meandered off track, so let’s get back to my question. You and straws? What gives?”
“Nothing.”
“I told you why I signed up,” Rosie said. “Honestly, I don’t give a shit about straws. If the city dumps the straw ban tomorrow, I’d find something else to do. But you really seem to despise them.”
“I do,” I said. “All my life.”
“Why?”
“You’ll never understand,” I said as I looked off into the distance, my eyes getting lost in the void. “No one ever understands.”
“I can’t promise I’ll understand,” Rosie said. “But I’ll try.”
“I could go through all the statistics,” I said. “What straws do the environment, our oceans, rivers and waterways. That alone should make even the most straight-laced John Q. Citizen go berzerko bananas over straws, but you know how people are. No one gives a shit about anything unless it affects them directly.”
“Aha!” Rosie said. “So, straws have affected you directly!”
“What?” I asked. “Wait. Listen, Toots. Just because you’ve got a Master’s in Psyche doesn’t mean you’re a bonafide headshrinker, so stay out of your brain, baby, because I promise you, you want like the goblins and ghouls who call that place home. Hell, I don’t like them either and I have to spend 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with them.”
“There was a straw related incident, wasn’t there?” Rosie asked. “Something that hurt you, changed your life, and not for the better. I can tell. It’s written all over your face.”
“I..just…listen. Straws aren’t just dangerous to the environment. They’re dangerous to people as well. Let’s just leave it at that.”
“Dangerous to people?”
“Yes.”
“How?” Rosie inquired. “They’re just little, long pieces of bendable plastic. People use them all the time and I’ve never heard of someone getting injured by one. How could…wait. That’s it! Isn’t it? Someone in your life, someone close to you…”
“That’s enough.”
“Come on,” Rosie said. “Once you let it all out, you’ll feel so much…”
I pounded my fist on the table, startling not only my partner but all of the super woke hipsters in our general vicinity. They took five seconds away from their laptops to stare at me, then returned to their works in progress.
I instantly regretted what I had done. “I’m sorry.”
“It’s cool,” Rosie said. “Touchy subject, apparently.”
“We’ll get there,” I said. “But we aren’t there yet.”
“Duly noted.”
“Straws,” I said. “They’re a tool of evil. Some say the greatest trick that the devil ever played was to fool mankind into thinking he doesn’t exist but no. The greatest trick he ever played was to dupe the masses into believing that the average drinking straw poses threat to a human being whatsoever. Oh, but I’ve been on the devil’s tail for quite some time now. I joined the force so many years ago, biding my time. I trained. I honed my skills. All those busts. All those perps I hunted down. All those harrowing car chases and near-death experiences. All of it was to prepare me for this.”
“This?” Rosie asked.
“This very moment,” I said. “The time I’ve waited my entire life for. The day that people wake up, pull their heads out of their asses and realize the danger of straws is finally here.”
“You really joined the force in the hope that one day you’d be able to secure a transfer to a newly created straw law enforcement division?” Rosie asked.
“I did,” I said.
“Hmm,” Rosie said. “You’re right, Smasher. I’m not a fully licensed psychiatrist but for what it’s worth, I think you need one.”
I pulled my shades down over my eyes. “Maybe I do. Or maybe we’re all just a little bit crazy.”
“Do you do that a lot?”
“What?”
“Pull your shades down when you think you have something clever to say?” Rosie asked.
“Maybe,” I said as I stood up. “Are we going to do this thing or what?”
Rosie looked dumbfounded. “What thing?”
I rolled my eyes. Good thing they were covered. “Wisenheimer’s.”
“What about it?”
“It’s a lead, baby, and if there’s one thing Mack Smasher doesn’t do, it’s abandon a good lead.”
“If Mack Smasher keeps saying stuff like that, Rosie Quan is going to be sick.”
“Enough talk,” I said. “Time for action. Are you in or out?”
Rosie stood up. She looked at me with the eyes of a stern mother, disappointed with her petulant child. “I’m in if you promise me that you’ll keep your gun in your holster, that you won’t rough anyone up, and you won’t do anything else that’s going to get us in trouble.”
“I can’t promise that,” I said. “Stop trying to clip my wings, cupcake. A stranded eagle is a terrible sight.”
“Then I’m out.”
“Fine. I promise.”
“Good.”
Joke’s on her. I had my fingers crossed behind my back.
“Wait a minute,” Rosie said. “What happened to my coffee? I ordered it like a half hour ago.”

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Mack Smasher: Renegade Straw Cop – Chapter 2

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The suspect looked at me with the eyes of a hungry shark.  It was obvious she wanted to chew me up and spit me out, but not in a good way.  No, she wanted to chew out my throat, spit it into my mug and laugh hysterically as I bled out all over the cold, concrete floor.  And she could have done it too, had she not been restrained.

Yeah, you can tell a lot about a woman just by looking into her eyes and while her body said petite coquette, her peepers said stone cold killer.

“Molly Thibodeux,” I said as I perused the minx’s file.  “AKA Molly Bissette aka Molly Couture.  Molly the Hatchet.  Molly the Butcher.  Molly the Knockout.  Sometimes known as Simone Dubois but universally reviled as Mo-Mo the Clam.  Says here that’s your preferred moniker.”

I looked up from the file.  “Huh.  How’d you land a nickname like that.”

The dame spoke with a French accent, the kind that made Mr. Happy stand up and dance.  I kept my cool and did what any red-blooded American male would have done when he needs to shrink an erection fast.  I thought about Rosie O’Donnell breakdancing in the buff, and that was all she wrote for that stiff one.

“Because like a…I’m sorry, who are you, s’il vous plait?”

“Smasher.  Mack Smasher.  I’m a cop and I’m damn proud of it.”

“Oui, Monsier.”  She took a drag of her cigarette, then blew a long trail of smoke into my kisser.  Once the cloud dissipated, I was able to see that she’d moved her face closer towards mine.  “Because, like a clam, when I get something of value between my legs, I clamp down…”

She gritted her teeth.  “And then I refuse to let go until I either squirt or I’m pried open.”

I gulped, choking down the desire that was building up inside me to bend her over and jam my baguette up her crepes suzette.

“Mo-Mo it is,” I said as I poked my nose back into her file.  “Hmm.  Things don’t look so good for you.”

“Well,” Mo-Mo said as she leaned back.  “You know what they say.  Things are always darkest before zie dawn, no?”

“No,” I snapped back.  “It’s curtains for you sister, see?  You’re on your way to the stony lonesome, the hoosegow, the clink, the slammer, the old iron bar hotel or maybe if the Feds get their way, it’ll be lethal injection.  Yeah, that’s right.  You’re wanted in all fifty U.S. states.”

“I am popular.”

“You’ve been on the FBI’s Top Ten Wanted List for the past five years,” I said.  “The Royal Canadian Mounted Police are looking for you, as is Interpol.  Law enforcement organizations from Belfast to Bombay are hunting you down as we speak and even the Vatican’s Swiss Guard would like a word.”

The dame smiled.  “I am…very popular.”

I tapped my finger on a page inside the file.  “You’re the world’s most foremost drug smuggling murderess for hire as well as a prolific prostitute.  You’ve killed more men than cancer and fucked more men than, well, also cancer.”

“Specious allegations.”

“Looks like the DC police beat everyone to the punch,” I said.  “When they raided your apartment, they found five suitcases full of Columbian Candy.  Bolivian Booger Sugar.  The Best Friend of Every 1980s Wall Street Banker.  Cocaine.”

“You must be reading someone else’s file.”

I pressed on.  “One hundred percent grade A pure.  Street value of over a million.  Also, in your possession was a cardboard box filled with 7,183 cut off mattress tags.”

“Anyone could have cut those off.”

“Forged passports.  Forged bank statements.  Forged security bonds.  Hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of jewelry stolen from the bodies of your victims.  All found inside your safe.”

“You peegs planted all that shit.  Fils de pute!

“There were three severed heads in your refrigerator,” I said.

“Those came with zie fridge,” Mo-Mo replied.  “I called zie company to complain but do you have any idea how long those cock-soo-kairs at Frosty Chill kept me on hold?”

“Ten more heads were found in your basement chest freezer,” I said.

“Sacre bleu!  Why are you persecuting me when you should be trying to find whoever has been putting heads into my appliances?”

I gazed at the file.  “When the police broke down your door, they found you in your living room, straddling a bound and gagged man with an axe in your hand and a crazed look in your eye.  When the man’s gag was removed he said, and this is a direct quote, ‘That bitch said she was going to chop my head off.’”

“C’est ridicule.  He must have been talking about some other beetch.  You think I could swing an axe with these tiny arms, huh?”

“Your cell phone was seized,” I said.  “Over one hundred videos of you cutting the heads off your victims were stored on it.  Huh.  You must be one of those psychos who gets their rocks off by reliving their crimes.”

“Or maybe I am aspiring actress on her way to Holl-eee-wood, practicing cutting up dummies with a rubber axe while I pour on zee ketchup to fake zee blood.  I am, how you say, ready for my closeup, Monsieur DeMille.”

“Hold on,” I said.  “Let me pull up my boots.  Boy, this is some fine police work, I’ve got to say.  I’ve been on the force twenty years and I’ve seen flimsy cases and strong cases.  This case is on steroids, baby.  Textbook probable cause obtained through a three-month surveillance operation, supplemented by eyewitness testimony.  Search warrant signed off by a judge.  An assistant district attorney on sight to ensure that all evidence was handled properly.”

I laid the file down on the desk.  “I’d love to be you right now, just so I could slap those itty bitty titties around all day, doll-face.”

“Get to zee back of zee line, flatfoot.”

“But I’d also hate to be you right about now,” I said.  “Pick any jury in the world and they’ll lock you up under the prison and drop the key down the garbage disposal.  Again, best case scenario.  The Feds are much less forgiving.”

Mo-Mo took one last drag of her cigarette, then stamped the end out on the table, completely uncaring of the mark that she had left on police property.  Sitting in front of her the entire time had been a plastic cup with a dome on top.  You know, the kind that prevents spillage.  It was filled with some kind of cold, piss-yellow liquid.  Beads of sweat formed on the outside of the cup.

The femme fatale picked up the drink, pursed her lips, then wrapped them around the business end of a long, black plastic straw.  She sucked, and sucked, and sucked away.  I would have envied that straw if I didn’t hate them so.

When the bodacious babe was done, she set her drink down on her table.  She emitted the teeniest burp.  “Mon Dieu!” she said as she held the palm of her finely manicured hand over her mouth. “Excusez-moi.”

My phone buzzed.  I pulled it out of my pocket and looked at the screen.  Davis.  I ignored the call.  “Now, look here, sister.”

My phone buzzed again.  An incoming text message from, you guessed it.  Davis.  “You’ve had your fun.”

I reached into my jacket and pulled out a manilla envelope.  “It’s time to talk turkey.”

Another text from Davis.  “End it.  NOW.”

I switched off my phone and tucked it back into my pocket.  I leaned over the table and looked the badass bimbo in the eye.  “You need to play ball.”

“Va te faire foutre, cop-air. I want to speak to my law-yair.”

An intercom hanged on the wall.  It beeped.  Davis’ voice came through.  “Smasher, come back here, please.”

I ignored my colleague’s entreaty.  “You want a shyster, sweetheart?  Just say the word, but know this, if you send your apple cart down that road, there’s no way I can help you get the worm out of your Macintosh.  You follow?”

“Not at all.”

Beep.  “Smasher.  Stop talking to the suspect.  Jeffries is on the way.”

I paid the intercom no mind.  “You’re about to experience a world of tough shakes, baby cakes.  In less than five minutes, Lieutenant Neal Jeffries, a real hard-ass if there ever was one, is going to walk through that door and hand you off to the FBI.  He and the Feds are going to hold a great big press conference where they’re going to circle jerk each other and then when the LT has been sufficiently blown with enough praise, he’s going to let the Federal government take you into custody.”

“I don’t care.”

“You should care.”

“One peeg farm is as shee-tee as another.”

“Like I said.  The Feds have the death penalty.  They’ll throw a bag over your head.  Call you an international terrorist.  Throw you in some deep, dark hole in Guantanamo Bay while they conduct some dog and pony show trial and then they’re going to strap you to a table and pump you with enough croak juice to drop an elephant.”

The dame and I stared at one another for a few seconds until I broke the tension.  “But, if that’s what you want…”

“What…do you want?”

I opened the envelope, pulled out a document and unfolded it.  I set it down on the table, along with a pen.

The fox picked up the papers and began to read to herself.

“No time for that.  Just sign it.

“Why zee fuck would I sign something when I don’t know what it is?”

“I’ll summarize.  As much as I’d love to see you burning in hell for all eternity, I’m working on a bigger case…”

Beep!  “Smasher,” Davis said.  “Jeffries is in the building now.  Just do us all a favor.  Get up and go before you embarrass yourself.”

“A massive case.  An enormous case.  One that makes the hundreds upon hundreds of international drug running murder cases against you pale in comparison.”

“Huh,” Mo-Mo said.  “Well, I’ve dabbled in any number of sordid act-tee-vee-tees.  Which one are you interested in?”

I looked at the straw poking out of the chilled beverage. “That.”

The lady looked befuddled.  “What?”

At this point, I should share a little secret.  Prior to joining the force, I spent a year training with the kung-fu monks at the Shaolin Monastery in China.  So lethal are my hands that I try to keep them out of my pockets lest I be accused of carrying concealed deadly weapons.  However, the greatest skill I learned from my masters is a finely tuned mind’s eye.

You have one.  I have one. Everybody has one.  It’s the collection of sights, smells, inferences and muscle memories that all come together in your brain, allowing you to, in a split second, predict not only what is about to happen, but also, to instantly decide what you are going to do about it.  If you haven’t trained in the martial arts of old, this all may sound like a bunch of confusing mumbo jumbo, so long story short, when the chips are down and the stakes are high, I am able to perceive actions in slow motion and respond before I’m even aware I am responding.

Case in point.  When Mo-Mo asked, “What?” I could see my hand move slowly toward the drink cup, slapping it off the table.  The dome popped off and sailed through the air until it hit the wall.  The liquid sprayed everywhere, drenching perp and dick alike.  The cup clattered onto the floor and the straw?  Like the claw of a furious tiger, my fingers grasped it, catching it before it hit the table.

“This,” I said as I held up the straw.  “I want to know where you got this.”

Mo-Mo appeared baffled.  “Zee straw?  Who gives a sheet?”

“I do,” I said.  “And if you want to save your skin, you don’t need to know why.”

I snatched the document out of Mo-Mo’s hand.  “This is a binding legal agreement authored by U.S. Attorney Roger Kowalski.  There’s no DA in these parts, so he makes all the decisions vis a vis who gets prosecuted and who doesn’t.  He owed me one.  A big one.  Let’s just say there was an unfortunate incident involving a duck and a feather duster.  I kept it out of the papers and this is how I have chosen to have him repay me.”

“You’re going to let me go over a straw?” Mo-Mo asked.  “I have never been one to look a gift horse in zee mouth but this smells like bull-sheet.”

I laid the document on the table.  “This deal states that, in Kowalski’s opinion, the DC police department’s investigation was faulty.  No reasonable prosecutor would go after you under these circumstances…”

Mo-Mo laughed.  “Ha!”

“…and you’ll be free to go, provided you tell me the name of who gave you that straw.”

Beep!  Davis sounded angry.  Positively fuming.  “Shut the fuck up right now, Smasher! I’m coming in there!”

I stood up, locked the door, then sat back down.

“This is the dumbest thing I have ever heard in my life,” Mo-Mo said.  “But whatever.  How am I to keep track of all you peegs and how you fuck each oth-air in your own sheet?  You want the name of who gave me zee straw, I’ll tell you, but who is to say the FBI won’t tear up your deal?”

“They won’t,” I said.  “They can’t.  It’d take me all day to explain the complexities of city versus federal dick measuring, but suffice to say, you’re in a sanctuary city.  You’ll be considered a protected undocumented immigrant the second you sign this deal and blab about the straw.  DC police will not be able to inform the FBI of your crimes.”

“But ob-vee-us-lee, they did,” Mo-Mo said.  “As you say, Jeff-reeze and FBI are on zee way.”

“Yeah,” I said.  “But the FBI will have to pretend like they never heard anything about you from Jeffries.  Trust me.”

“Ha!” Mo-Mo said.  “Many men have told me that before.”

“No man like me.”

“I’m sure.”

Davis’ fist pounded on the door.  His voice was muffled through the thick steel. “Let me in, Smasher!  Right now!”

I slipped the papers across the table.  “No time to lose, honeybuns.  Sign it, tell me who gave you the straw and I guarantee they’ll let you walk out of here a free woman or…”

Bang, bang, bang.  “Smasher! if you fuck up this case, so help me, I’ll…”

“…you can take your chances with whoever’s about to unlock that door.”

Outside, I could hear Davis huffing and puffing.  He was out of breath.  “Who has the key?  Paulson!  What?  You don’t have it?  Well, don’t just stand there!  Find out who has the key!”

Mo-Mo frowned.  “It is no use.  As you know, I am internationally wanted woman.  So, I walk out the door.  So, your peegs aren’t able to tell on me.  The heat will be on me know and the second I touch down abroad, I am done for.”

I pulled a plane ticket out of the envelope and set it on the table.  “A first-class, one-way ticket to Mongolia. Paid for by Kowalski himself out of his own personal funds. That’s how grateful he is to me over the duck situation.”

“Mon-goal-eee-ah?” Mo-Mo asked.  “What zee fuck am I going to do with a bunch of Mongoloids?”

“Not sure that’s the proper term, baby, but it’s a non-extradition country.  You’re not wanted there and the Mongols have no desire to help America or its allies catch criminals on the run.  You’re a resourceful girl.  You’ll be able to lay low for a while and then from there, you’ll be able to disappear to wherever your cold, bombed out and depleted husk of a heart desires.”

There was another bang on the door.  A new voice was shouting at me.  “Smasher!”

“He’s not here right now,” I said.  “Can I take a message?”

“Smasher!” the voice snapped.  “This is Lieutenant Jeffries!  Open this door right now and get your ass out here before I…”

I looked at the beauty.  “Now or never, Toots. What’s it gonna be?”

Mo-Mo wasted no time.  She seized the pen, scrawled her name on the dotted line, then grabbed the ticket.  “Wisenheimer’s.  It is a chain family restaurant in Foggy Bottom.  I despise such bourgeoisie sheet but they make the best sour lemon freeze I’ve ever tasted.”

“Finally!” Lt. Jeffries said as a keychain jingled.  “Get this door open, now!”

The blonde bombshell handed me the document.  “The décor is sheet but zee fried cheese balls are also not so bad as long as you can stand zee cartoon gopher mascot.”

Wham!  The door was thrust open.  Davis and Paulson rushed in, followed by three, nearly identical looking, buzz cut sporting, sunglasses wearing G-men.  Lt. Jeffries, with his fancy designer suit and slicked back hair, carried up the rear, an iced coffee drink in hand.

“Get him out of here!” Lt. Jeffries said.  He then pointed at Mo-Mo.  “And you!  You’re…”

I held up the document.  “A free woman,” I said.

Jeffries snatched the papers out of my hand and read it silently, mumbling as he did so.  “Due to the slipshod, haphazard work of Lt. Neal Jeffries and….what the…oh…oh my God!  In consideration of your agreement to assist with the forthright investigation of the incomparable Detective Mack Smasher…you’re cleared of all U.S. charges?!”

The lieutenant tossed the papers at me.  I caught them.  “What the fuck, Smasher?  Is this the…what is this?  Is the thing with the duck and the backscratcher?”

“Feather duster,” I said.  “And maybe.”

Jeffries’ face turned the brightest shade of red I’d ever seen.  Had his head been a volcano, it would have erupted like Mt. Vesuvius.  His eyes told me that he wanted to rip off my arms, club me with them until I’m paralyzed, then shove them up my ass.  Personally, I couldn’t blame him.

“This woman is wanted on hundreds of murder charges, Smasher!  And you’d throw it all away over what?”

I stood there stoically, accepting the abuse.

“No, seriously, Smasher,” Lt. Jeffries said.  “What are you selling your brothers in blue out for?  A lousy straw beef?”

I like to consider myself a paragon of self-control, but insensitive remark made me blow my stack.  My eyes widened.  My nostrils flared.  “You don’t think a straw case is a big deal?”

“No,” Jeffries said.  “I don’t.”

I held up Mo-Mo’s straw.  “To your untrained eyes, this looks like a straw, but I know better.  This isn’t just a straw.  This is Hitler.  This is Stalin.  This is Mussolini. This is Bin Laden.  This, brother, is the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, all wrapped into a pretty plastic bow.  Sure, the corporate big wigs in the straw industry want you to think the straw ban is bonkers, but what they don’t tell you is that Americans slurp on as many as 500 million of these suckers a year and then? They never get re-used! They just get thrown away!  They’re non-biodegradable!  Have you ever tried to rip one of these things apart?  You can’t.  You can dip them in gasoline, run them over with a truck, hit them with a hammer and they’ll still be around a million years ago.  Many of them end up in the ocean and then there’s the threat that they pose to personal safety that no one ever talks about, by the way.  And another thing…”

“Enough!” Lt. Jeffries said.  “Spare me the hipster bullshit, ass-face.  You’re a poor excuse for an officer of the law, Smasher, and don’t think for one second that I’m not going to inform your captain as such.”

Lt. Jeffries looked at Mo-Mo, then to Davis.  “Get her out of here before I lose my lunch.”

Davis nodded.  He unlocked the handcuff around Mo-Mo’s wrist, then led the vile she-devil to the door.

“Au revoir, little peegeez,” Mo-Mo said as she blew a kiss at the lieutenant.  “It has been fun.”

“Oh, and Davis?”

“Yeah, boss?”

“Clean out your desk, dick wad,” Lt. Jeffries said.  “You’ll be lucky if they let you be a meter maid out of this.”

The detective grimaced in my direction.  He pointed at me.  “We’re going to have this out, Smasher.  You and me.  It’s on.”

“Bring it, fat boy,” I said.

“Oh, it’s being brought, dick cheese,” Davis replied.

“I’m shaking in my boots.”

“You should be.”

“Go on,” the lieutenant said.  “Everybody get out of here!”

Davis, Paulson, and Mo-Mo exited, followed by the three FBI agents.  One of them shook his head.  “Stupid DC police amateurs.”

“Couldn’t investigate their way out of a wet paper bag,” another agent said.

When we were alone, Jeffries laid into me again.  “I hope this was worth it, Smasher.”

“It was,” I replied.

“Yeah,” the lieutenant said.  “Somehow I don’t think Molly the Clam’s next victim will think that finding out the name of a restaurant that’s giving out straws was worth it.”

Lt. Jeffries raised his plastic cup.  He wrapped his lips around an orange straw and sucked away.  He let out a satisfied, “Ahh.  That’s good.”

I did my best to look the other way.  The lieutenant was, after all, as he so eloquently pointed out earlier, my brother in blue.  “You’ve got your job.  I’ve got mine.  I’m sorry that like every other slob in this country, your blind to the multitude of dangers that straws pose to the safety and security of our nation, but I, for one, will always do my best to…”

Slurp, slurp, slurp!  As the lieutenant ran out of iced coffee, his straw made all manner of unpleasant slurping sounds.

I pressed on.  “I will always do my best to…”

Slurp, slurp, slurp!

“My best to stop straws, wherever they may be and….”

Slurp, slurp, slurp!

I couldn’t take it anymore.  “What the fuck is that?!”

“What?” a dumbfounded lieutenant asked.

“That!” I said as I pointed to the straw.

“What?” Lt. Jeffries said as he looked at his cup.  “It’s an iced coffee from Blendergan’s.”

“I…I can’t even…

The lieutenant gave his straw another slurp.  “I really shouldn’t be having this.  My wife’s been nagging me for months to drop ten pounds and I mean, talk about a double standard, am I right?  If I ever told he to drop ten pounds she’d rip off my head and shit down my neck but oh well, what are you going to do?”

I stammered on.  “You mean…you’re just going to…suck on that and…”

“What can I say?” Lt. Jeffries asked.  “This job is exhausting.  I need my caffeine fix but I hate black coffee.  If I’d lose the sugar and cream, I’d cut weight like no tomorrow but oh well, the old battle-axe is just gonna have to take me as I am.”

My nemesis slurped, and slurped, and slurped.  Soon enough, his puzzled eyes traveled toward me, taking in the frazzled expression on my face.  His lips released the straw.  “Jeeze Louise.  What just crawled up your keyster?”

I knocked the cup out of Jeffries hand, sending coffee and ice everywhere.

“Hey!” Jeffries said.  “There were still a few slurps left in that!”

“You make me sick!”

“I make you sick?”  Jeffries asked.  “After the stunt you just pulled, Smasher?  That’s rich.  That’s really rich.  Why don’t you take off before I have you arrested for obstruction of justice?”

I got up in the lieutenant’s face, so close that I could smell the stench of his dank coffee breath, with a tinge of dime store after shave mixed in.  “Why don’t you take off before I arrest you for being a dirty cop?”

The lieutenant slapped his forehead.  “Dirty cop.  Oh Lord.  Dare I ask?”

“There’s a straw ban in full effect,” I said.  “And you’re just waltzing around here, sucking on a straw like you’re a some young, dumb, 1970s era, bushy beavered porn star and that straw is John Holmes’ cock.”

“I think you’d better leave,” Jeffries said.

“I’ve been out on these mean streets for entire week,” I said.  “Busting my ass to make DC a straw free zone and I’ve got to look at one of my brothers gagging on a contraband beverage pipe?”

“A contraband beverage what?” Jeffries asked.  “Goddamn it.  Fucking straw cops.  What a joke.  You used to be somebody, Smasher.  You used to crack cases the rest of us could only dream about but now look at you.  Running around like an asshole, slapping overpriced novelty drinks out of people’s hands.  Why don’t you just pop your piece in your mouth and end it already?”

In my mind, I raged.  I’d seen too many cops go down that route to bear a flippant comment about suicide in the law enforcement profession.

“Next time I see a straw in your piehole, I’ll shoot it right out of your mouth,” I said.

“Yeah, right,” Jeffries said.  “I’ve seen you shoot, Smasher.  You couldn’t hit the broadside of a barn if a big red X was painted on it and two chicks with big fake titties were pointing at it for you.”

“The law’s the law,” I said.  “And straws are against the law.”

“Jesus Christ,” Lt. Jeffries said.  “I don’t live in the district, dumbass.  I commute in everyday from Alexandria, where there’s no straw ban, and the Blendergan’s a block from my house is free to give me as many straws as I damn well please.”

“Well,” I said.  “Smuggling it into DC is still against the spirit of the straw law.”

“Against the spirit of the…”  The lieutenant cradled his head in his hands, calmed himself, then looked up at me.  “There’s no law against using a straw in DC.  There’s no law against bringing people bringing their own straws into DC…”

“Yet,” I said.  “Fucking politicians will wake up one day.”

“Whatever,” Lt. Jeffries said.  “I brought that straw to work legally, Smasher.  You just blackmailed a U.S. district attorney into releasing a mass murderer and you want to stand there and call me a dirty cop over a straw?  Fuck you.  Get out of my face.”

I pulled a straw ban pamphlet out of my pocket and attempted to hand it to the lieutenant.  “I really think if you study the anti-straw law literature and educate yourself, you’ll start to see things from my…”

Fwap!  Jeffries knocked the pamphlet out of my hand.  “Get out of here.”

I scratched my head.  An odd, sad feeling enveloped my soul.  It might have been empathy.  Or gas.  To this day, I’m not sure.  “Sorry, man.”

“Yeah,” Jeffries said.  “Now I have to go explain to my boss how the case of the century was blown under my watch and something tells me your sorries aren’t going to cut it.”

I tried to connect on a personal level.  “Neal, I just…”

“Get lost, Smasher,” Jeffries said.  “Steer clear of me because if I ever see you again, I’ll cave your face in.”

I headed for the door.  “Fine.  If that’s the way you want it.”

“It is.”

I walked down the dark, depressing hallway.  When I reached the elevator, I pressed the up button and waited.  A few seconds later, Jeffries exited the interrogation room with Mo-Mo’s plastic cup in hand.

“Hey asshole!”

“Yeah?”

“Next time,” Jeffries said.  “Before you strike a deal to release an international criminal who is wanted by the Hague on war crimes, maybe take a peek at the side of her cup first!”

I glared at the cup.  There it was.  Printed in a neon green front, clear as day.  “Wisenheimer’s Family Restaurant.  Foggy Bottom.  Washington, D.C.” Underneath the print?  A cartoon gopher.

“Oh,” I said.  “Right.”

“Yeah,” Jeffries said as he returned to the interrogation room.  “Right.  Fucking idiot.”

Mack Smasher: Renegade Straw Cop – Chapter 1

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The name’s Smasher.  Mack Smasher.  I’m a cop and I’m damn proud of it.  You don’t like it?  Well, nuts to you, palooka, because if there’s one thing that you, me and Mr. McGee are fully aware of it’s the indisputable fact that if a private citizen such as yourself were to ever strap on a badge and called upon to protect and serve for a single day, you’d be puking your guts out and crying for your mommy by lunchtime.

But that’s neither here nor there.  There’s a million stories in the District of Columbia and this one is mine.  It’s not the greatest story ever told.  That’s the bible, pal, and don’t you forget it.  It’s not the worst story either told.  That’s Gigli, friend, and feel free to forget that one at any time.  My story is somewhere in the middle.  I’m not the first Tom, Dick, or Harry to dive head first into an ocean of shit without a snorkel, nor will I be the last.  So, sit back, strap in, hold onto your asses and get ready for one hell of a ride.  Or don’t.  See if I care.

Speaking of shit, if there’s one thing that the people of this Godless, rat infested swamp love, it’s their bullshit.  They don’t want it cold.  They don’t want it hiding in a cupboard next to a six-month old stale bag of potato chips.  No, they want their bullshit served up to them as entrée, piping hot with a French waiter there to pour the bullshit wine and say “Bon appetit.”  Then they’ll chow down on a bullshit steak with a bullshit baked potato and polish it all off with a slab of bullshit cake.  The entire time they’ll say it was the greatest meal they’ve ever eaten and yet, they’ll know, deep down, that it made them sick.

Enough allegories.  The Capitol Building serves as a grand, sweeping monument to so-called democracy when in reality, Congressmen and women run around like filthy carnival barkers, selling off our rights and freedoms to the highest bidder.  It’s a non-stop fire sale and everything and anything that makes our country good will go.  What can you expect?  When the hallowed halls of government were built by slaves, there can be no justice and no peace.

Oh, but our legislators try to make the world a better place, or at least they try really hard to convince you that they are.  All day long, they pass laws.  Laws, laws, and more laws.  Laws against drugs.  Laws against guns. Laws against sexual assault.  Laws against murder.  Laws against animal cruelty.  Laws against every crime you could possibly imagine, large or small.

And the people?  Oh, they all pretend to be good puritan folk.  By day, they’ll cry and shout for more laws against drugs.  More laws against murder. More laws against chickens.  More laws against every crime you could possibly imagine, large or small.

Then when the day is down and night falls over our nation’s capitol, those same citizens who called for all those laws will transform into bloody hypocrites – snorting crank, shooting and raping each other to death then some Johnny Law schmuck like yours truly will be left to kick down their doors and haul them away just as they were about to molest a chicken.

It’s enough to make a lesser man sick.  Luckily, I’ve got a cast iron stomach.  You have to have one if you’re going to clean up the city’s scum for a living.  Come to think of it, I was built like a brick shithouse.  I’m 6’4” and 225, all solid muscle.  Arms like cannons and the ladies are constantly begging for a ticket to the gun show but who has the time?  Not this fella.  Not when the city’s virtual jerkoff factory is humming along, constantly churning out new product.

Now, I know you didn’t come here to hear about me.  You want the story, so let’s begin at the beginning.  That’s the best place to begin, after all, and I’m not about to Tarantino this shit and start at the end.  Fuck that noise.

It was noon on January 8.  I strolled into the 7th precinct with my leather jacket on.  Black hair perfectly coiffed.  Mirrored shades hiding my disgust in humanity.  I worked my way to one side of an interrogation room, where those two useless turds, Detectives Davis and Paulson were sitting on a broad.  Not literally, mind you, but rather, they were on the shady side of a two-way mirror, looking in on a dame who was cooling her heels.

What a woman.  She had a pair of getaway sticks that made you want to run all the way to New Jersey and an angelic face that looked so good that you knew she had to be bad.  Her hair was flaxen gold and her lips, red like a couple of hot rubies pinched from the neighborhood jewelry store.  A little black dress completed her ensemble and though no smoking was allowed, she used the hand that wasn’t cuffed to a metal bar to puff on a long, filtered cigarette.

“Smasher!” Davis barked.  “You’re not supposed to be here.”

“None of us are supposed to be here,” I replied.  “We’re all just one great, big metaphysical mistake.  Sentient meat puppets tricked into believing that the machinations of our maniacal minds actually matter when in reality, our existence is little more than a cruel parlor trick perpetrated by the unseen forces of the cosmos.”

Davis and Paulson traded blank looks, then focused on me.  “Lieutenant Jeffries said no one is to speak to the suspect until he arrives,” Paulson said.  “So, don’t even think about.”

I yanked a file out of Paulson’s hand.  “It’s cool.  I spoke to Jeffries.  Everything’s copasetic, compadre, so dismount your high horse and go sing your sad cowboy song elsewhere.”

Paulson lunged for the file, but I backed away just in time.  “Give me that!” he cried.

“Oh no!” Davis said.  “We’re not falling for your any of your tricks, Smasher!  Jeffries said you would say that you spoke to him and he specifically said to us that if you say you spoke to him, we shouldn’t believe it, because he would not have spoken to you about this.”

As I stood in the doorway that led to a dank a hall, I waved a pointer finger in the hair.  “Aha!  But what you’re missing is that I knew that Jeffries would tell you to not believe it when I say that I spoke to him because he wouldn’t have spoken to me and that’s why I made it a point to speak to him anyway and to get his full permission to speak to the suspect even though he, Jeffries, went out of his way to speak to you and tell you to not let me speak to the suspect.”

Davis and Paulson looked at each other.

“Shit,” Davis said.

“That checks out,” Paulson added.

The dicks followed me out into the hallway.  I put my hand on the knob that lead to the suspect’s side of the room.

“Smasher,” Davis said.  “Please.  I’m begging you.  You don’t have any idea how hard it was to make this collar.  Don’t mess it up.  The lieutenant will put our balls in a vice if you do.  He’ll squeeze all the juice out of them, mix it in with his OJ and drink it for breakfast.  He’ll then leave us to flop around on the floor and die, like two ball-less wonders without a place in this topsy-turvy world.”

I rested a hand on Davis’ shoulder.  “Never fear, my friend.  I would never put you or your partner’s balls in jeopardy.  I just have to ask this floozy a few questions.  Standard procedure.  Nothing to see here.”

Davis made a V with his index and middle fingers, held them up to his eyes, then pointed one finger at me.  “I’m watching you, Smasher.”

“Fine,” I replied.

“No, seriously,” Davis said.  “I’m watching you the way a middle-aged, former high-school football star watches an NFL game. Sure, I’ll cheer you on and live vicariously through you if you do well, but the second you fumble, I’ll blame you for all my woes and sorrows and be all over you like one of those bitches on the View on a cherry peach cobbler.”

I opened the door to the room.  “You do that.”

Mack Smasher: Renegade Straw Cop – Introductory News Article

EDITORIAL NOTE:  I know.  The worst thing a writer can do is work on a new project when another is underway.  However, sometimes I get so inspired that I overfill with glee and laugh and laugh and laugh as I think of a premise.  Seeing the news that the District of Columbia hired a straw ban enforcement officer popped this little gem into my mind, so without further ado…

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An Excerpt From the Washington Telegraph-Dispatch

Washington, D.C. Rings in a Strawless New Year

              By: Ariana Esposito, Telegraph-Dispatch Staff Writer, January 1, 2019

Say goodbye to that water tube, boys and girls.  A district wide ban on those pesky little pieces of plastic goes into effect today.  It will be illegal for restaurants and other food service businesses to provide them to the general public, though they will be required to still have a small amount on hand as the ban does not apply to customers with disabilities that make drinking from a straw an absolute necessity.

The city has taken a gradual approach to enforcement.  Business owners will be given until July to comply, allowing them to burn through the supplies of plastic supplies on hand currently.  Many establishments are transitioning from plastic straws to easily biodegradable paper alternatives, or metal straws that can be washed and re-used.

D.C. police will handle investigate all failures to comply with the ban.  A special Straw Law Enforcement Unit has been established.  Officers from the squad have been out in full force, issuing pamphlets that summarize what restauranteurs need to know about the ban.  After July 1, the unit will be empowered to issue fines to businesses that are still giving out plastic straws.  Multiple violations could result in jail time.

Needless to say, activists on both sides of the aisle mixed feelings.  Monica Blather, a founding member of the liberal think tank, More Blame for America Now! was all for the regulation.  “This is wonderful.  Absolutely fabulous!  We humans have been raping the earth for far too long and now we need to return our planet to the pristine state it was once in.  Banning straws is a good first step, but next we all must give up our cars, houses, and any and all modern conveniences and live in environmentally friendly, low carbon footprint caves.  Oh, but you give up all your stuff and move into a cave first, please, and then eventually I’ll join you.  I swear.”

On the right side of the aisle, conservative talk show host Jim Claymore of Jim Claymore’s America was outraged.  “These liberal whack jobs won’t rest until America is screwed into a far-left hellscape.  First, they come for the straws.  Next, they’ll come for your guns.  Then it’s freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of association.  They’ll pass abortion laws that will allow elderly parents to stick their forty-year-old children into woodchippers and after they do all that, the libtards will achieve their long sought after coupe de grace.  That’s right.  Mandatory dick choppings.  Feminists will run through the streets with rusty butcher knives, lopping off peckers left and right, fully sanctioned by the United States government.  You heard it here first, folks.  And mark my words, the socialist nightmare that is coming America’s way is coming with this Godforsaken straw ban.”

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