Wednesday, June 30, 2010

A Moment of Truth

Once you get past a whole round of tests, you actually go through another round of interviews with various NYPD Personnel. My husband was at one such interview, when a question came up, seemingly out of left field.

"So, did you get into any trouble when you were at college?" The NYPD Officer leveled his gaze upon my husband.

To hear Rocco tell this story is hilarious. He will tell you his heart actually skipped three beats.

For the most part, my husband was a pretty typical college kid, with an incredibly typical college career. He went to a Big East school and did his share of what college kids do: drinking, trying to hook up with girls, pulling pranks on get the idea. Senior year, his school was up for a Bowl game. This was big news, as his school hadn't made it that far in a long time. The whole campus was filled with electricity and anticipation: was this the year they were going to go all the way?

The night before the big game, his gang of ten was busy doing the usual: tearing apart pizzas, slugging back beers, and ragging on each other. Then someone had a great idea: how cool would it be to steal the sign that said: BIG EAST SCHOOL STADIUM---NEXT LEFT from the highway exit right near their home?! OH MY GOD! How cool could they possibly be?! That's it! Nobody would ever be cooler! A plan was hatched, designated drivers chosen, keys thrown around, tools proffered from the back of someone's Jeep. They set out to steal the sign. Under cover of darkness, they did it! WOO HOO! They made their way back to the dorm with the spoils of war: one slightly rusted highway sign that they would pass between them all the years of their life. More beers were consumed, a celebration ensued, and they began to decide how the sign would share time with each of them, kind of like the Stanley Cup.

With dawn, it began to dawn on one of the more paranoid members of the posse that they could get into trouble for this petty attempt at petit larceny. This one spoilsport was particularly paranoid: he wanted to get into government, and what if somebody found out about his bold attempt at thievery?! He harassed the roommates with vigor, epithets were thrown about, and soon a new plan was hatched: they would put the sign back that night. They had to...they knew enough to know that holding onto the evidence was probably not the smartest thing.

That night, they set out to right their wrongs and return the sign. It was fun---they all agreed---but they needed to put the sign back. That way they could never get in trouble for taking it to begin with.

Imagine their surprise when, in the midst of returning said sign to its original home, they saw the glare of headlights and heard the trill of a police speaker asking them to please step away from the sign. The soon-to-be Congressman insisted that it was all just a joke. Really! See, there was no harm, no foul...they were putting it back!

No dice. The officers apparently did not find this as funny as the participants did. The handcuffs were never broken out, but hubby and pals ended up having to sign an affidavit with the police and swear that they would leave the highway signs on the highway.

This legend of yore has been busted out at every single reunion and wedding and BBQ and Surprise Party we've attended with the College group. They marvel at their stupidity: What a bunch of nerds, to get nailed only upon the return of the sign! At least if they got caught taking it...well, that would have given them a little bit of street cred!

So now we have Roc, sweating profusely under the policeman's glare, with mere seconds to make what could possibly be a life-changing decision: do I tell him about the sign? How could he possibly know about the sign?!

A breath, a beat, and then:

"Well, I actually have a pretty funny story." Rocco began. "Me and a bunch of knuckleheads..." Chuckle, chuckle, sweat, sweat.

He finished, his heart beating out of his chest, and stared directly at the officer doing the questioning.

"I'm sure glad you told me. " The officer shook his head and cracked a smile. "We already knew about the sign."

I think it's safe to say that this is the new Legend.


  1. HA Ha! That is hilarious. Good thing he told them the story. . .

    I am loving your stories by the way. What a great way to document your journey. The good and the bad.

  2. I don't think I've heard that one! Too funny!

  3. I'm with Mrs. Fuzz...I'm loving the stories but in a way, I almost think you should be saving them to be published.


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