In Search of Intelligent Life  

The human race seems obsessed with finding intelligent life on other worlds. But, all of the evidence indicates that we need to focus our search here on planet Earth. Read the following true accounts and see if you agree.

James L. McClinton, Ph.D.

Titanic captain: “In retrospect, I should’ve avoided that iceberg”… “I saw her light on and wanted to say hello,” the man told police. His girlfriend had just dropped him off at his Santa Rosa, California, home after a party and he said he saw his neighbor’s light on and went over for a drink. It was 3:30 a.m. and the frightened neighbor woman called police. The man, a Sonoma County supervisor, was arrested for attempted burglary and prowling, but that was later reduced to “peeking” into the neighbor’s window. He has pleaded not guilty and refuses to resign from office. But, the incident was more than just a simple misunderstanding, “It was a bad read,” he told police. “A misperception on my part,” he added. And, in a brilliant display of 20/20 hindsight, he also told the officers, “In retrospect, I should have had my pants on.” (Men without pants who peek in women’s windows at 3:30 a.m. probably shouldn’t expect to be invited in for a “drink.”)

The problem with cocaine dealers is that they’re always sticking their business into other people’s noses!… When a drug case was called in Broward County (Florida) Court, the bailiff announced the defendant’s name. The judge was surprised and said, “What?” “My last name is Cocaine,” confirmed the 34-year-old defendant named Edward Cocaine. He told the judge, “My great-grandparents came over here from Greece and they changed it. That was like in the 1920s.” The judge laughed and asked, “How many times have the police told you to step out of the car during your life?” Cocaine thought the question was funny and even laughed it off, admitting, “Just about every time I get pulled over.” The judge released Cocaine on his own recognizance rather than setting cash bail. (This guy must have the best pickup line, “Hey ladies – you wanna party with Cocaine?”)

I’ve heard of “Meals on Wheels” before, but… A Maryland woman may have been “braking bad” while allegedly driving a mobile methamphetamine lab down I-64 in Virginia. Virginia State Police troopers stopped her on suspicion of driving under the influence after they spotted her driving her Chrysler hatchback very erratically. After she was stopped, police officers found a mobile meth lab in the 39-year-old woman’s vehicle. Virginia State Police told TV reporters that officers discovered that the woman was “cooking meth as she was driving down the road.” “It’s considered a one person lab,” said police. She was arrested and charged with driving under the influence of drugs; two counts of possession of a controlled substance; false identity; not having a valid operator’s license; driving while suspended; and manufacturing methamphetamine. (It’s true what they say, “Nothing beats Mama’s home cooking” – except a state trooper in a Police Interceptor.)

No one will ever accuse this heel of not having a sole!… A man was released from prison in Tom’s River, New Jersey, after serving a 15 year sentence for robbing a shoe store. So, what do you think he did on his first day of freedom? He chose not to spend quality time with his family and go to a favorite restaurant or to a bar to celebrate with food and drink. Instead, he chose to head back to the very same shoe store he had robbed 15 years earlier and rob it again. He took a bus from the prison to Tom’s River where he headed straight to the Stride Rite® store and threatened the clerk, getting away with $389. He didn’t get very far, however, and police caught up with him a few blocks away. He’s headed back to prison. (Apparently, the only thing he learned in prison was single-minded determination.)

The officers were quick to notice that the weapon had a “hair trigger”… Police officers converged on a Maine man’s home after members of a tree removal crew reported that he had a gun. It turned out that the “gun” the tree crew had seen on the Norridgewock man was just a life-sized tattoo of a handgun on his stomach. The man (who works nights) was asleep when the tree crew (which had been contracted to trim branches near power lines) woke him up at about 10:00 a.m. He went outside shirtless and yelled at the workers to leave. When he’s not wearing a shirt, the tattoo looks like a gun tucked into his waistband. He told a local newspaper that the tattoo has never been a problem before. (Maybe, he should tattoo a brain on his forehead.)

“Honest, officer, the difference between him and me is that one of us is both the same!”… In Florida, a Hernando County Sheriff’s detective happened across a 53-year-old man named James who was a longtime fugitive and detained him. But, James insisted that the officer had confused him with someone else and that he was actually his own twin brother who is named Gary. On a hunch, the detective tried a simple ploy and called out to “the man,” “Hey, James!” which prompted “Gary” to quickly turn his head to see what the detective wanted. Police said “Gary” then put his head down and acknowledged that he was really James. He was held for extradition on a 30-year-old Michigan warrant. (I know things have changed since I retired, but I’m told that fingerprinting is still a pretty good way to determine identities.)

“Your Honor, I move for a mistrial – the witness just chewed up the Bible and he can’t be sworn in!”… Court cases wherein dogs are allowed as “witnesses” are becoming increasingly popular in France and are becoming “something of a recent trend,” according to French reporters. A nine-year-old Labrador retriever named Tango took the witness stand in the city of Tours so the judge could observe how he reacted to the defendant who was on trial for killing the dog’s owner. In observance of due process of law, a second dog named Norman took the stand later, as a sort of “control group.” Ultimately, the judge said he learned nothing from the dogs and dismissed them. (I have to admit that using the local animal shelter as a safe refuge for the witness protection program is a brilliant tactic!)