Dream of: 24 October 1995 "Something's Still Not Right Here"

While Carolina and I had been in a department store, I had stuck two 3.5" computer disks into my back pocket and walked out of the store without paying for them. Once we were outside, I climbed into the back seat of my red BMW, and Carolina climbed into the driver's seat. Several children who also belonged to Carolina and me also climbed into the car.

Carolina pulled out. We had only traveled a short distance when a cop pulled up behind us and signaled us to pull over. Figuring he was after us because I had stolen the disks, I quickly slipped the disks out of my back pocket and stuck them down the back seat. Now in order to find them, the cop would have to pull up the back seat.

Once we had stopped, the cop walked up to the driver's window. He was tall and lean and had black hair. He was probably in his late 20s and was dressed in a light brown uniform. He looked at Carolina and asked her if he could see the sack which she had bought at the department store. She handed it to him. I knew the sack contained a copy of a magazine called Photoplay which Carolina had bought. I thought the cop might think Photoplay was a stupid magazine; but I recalled that I had recently seen a documentary where pictures of actors on old copies of Photoplay had been shown, and I knew all copies of Photoplay would someday be collectors items.

What concerned me more was whether I had bought any magazines and put them in the sack. I was bothered that I might have bought a copy of Playboy. I couldn't remember, but I didn't think I had. I thought it wouldn't look good if a copy of Playboy were in the sack, and that the cop would become more suspicious of me.

But after looking through the contents of the sack, the cop seemed satisfied and handed the sack back to Carolina. He was courteous and friendly, and even somewhat apologetic for having pulled us over. He mentioned that there had been a power outage at the store while we had been there. Now I thought I knew what had happened. Someone had probably seen me put the two computer disks in my back pocket. In fact I now remembered that I had seen a man standing in one of the other aisles when I had done the act, and that it had occurred to me that he had been watching me. But now it seemed clear to me that during the power outage, the lights had gone off for a short time and the people in the store had lost sight of me. Now they couldn't be sure I hadn't put the disks back on the shelf. And they didn't want to take the risk of accusing me without being positive.

Finally the cop said we could go and he started to walk away. But suddenly he turned back around and said, "Something's still not right here."

Fearing that the cop was going to ask us to let him search the car, I thought about saying something, but I held back. I decided the best policy for me was to keep quiet. I thought he might just think it was strange because Carolina was driving and I was sitting in the back seat. I just sat there – worried. I knew since I was a lawyer it would be extremely bad if I were arrested for shoplifting. But to my extreme relief, the officer finally turned and walked away.

Carolina pulled out and headed down the road. We had pulled onto a small country road and were trying to get back to the highway. Carolina almost ran a stop sign and only put on the brakes when I hollered at her to stop. I surely didn't want the cop to pull us over again for running a stop sign.

Pulling away from the stop sign, Carolina said that she had recognized the cop as someone she had known, and that she knew he had also recognized her. She told me the cop had once come to her before when he had been in trouble. His problem had had something to do with having driven recklessly on a trip from Atlanta to Dallas. Carolina had recommended the cop to a good lawyer whom she knew, and the cop had gotten out of the trouble.

This was all news to me and seemed very strange. It was normally I who recommended people to other lawyers since I was the one who knew other lawyers and not Carolina. At any rate, it appeared that the cop had recognized Carolina, and that had influenced his decision to let us go without searching the car. I had gotten away with the disks. But I was sure I wasn't going to risk that again anytime soon.

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