Wednesday morning. Sitting here in my office having just finished walking my beat. Bored out of my frigging mind.
People ask what I do around here, and the simple truth is that I don't do much. Cops aren't paid for what we do, we are paid for what we are willing to do. However, even when the school is full of kids, and I am walking my beat, there is simply not a whole lot to do when things are quiet in the school. I carry two radios. One connects me with my boss and the whole police universe. The other connects me with the school. When someone with authority needs me, the radio lets me know. And I respond. I respond regardless of the problem.
Someone has a student throwing a fit? I respond and handle it. Someone has an accident in the parking lot? I respond and I handle it. Someone notices a person that shouldn't be on campus? I respond and handle it. And I can handle it in a number of ways, most of them gentle and quiet, but it is my job to handle it. God forbid, someone brings in a gun and starts shooting up the place? I respond and handle it.
While walking my beat, I notice things. Things like a broken light. Maintenance needs to handle that because we will need that light later. Things like a parent wandering the hall lost in a maze of classrooms. I help them find what they need. Things like a student skipping class, I run her back to class and let the teacher know where I found her. I handle lots of little things that no one knows about. It is all about protecting and serving.
Police work is about helping people. People who come into contact with a situation they can't handle. Those are the folks that call the police. We never know when that situation will occur. We never know what we'll find when we get to the situation. We never know if this is the one that will make our wives into widows, but we respond and handle it.
Time to go walk around for a little while.