Until we meet again, Officer ‘Smith’

If “The Hangover” producers need sequel ideas, they should consider my home-from-college weekends in the east Texas town of Mt. Vernon.

One night my .327 Camaro was stopped for the second time that evening on a country blacktop by a highway patrolman (who should have been keeping meth-fueled truckers off of Interstate-30).

The sheriff had also pulled us over about 30 minutes before, but we had spotted him coming and tossed our booze over a bridge and stashed our stashes in our underwear.

When the patrolman’s lights began flashing, we tossed more youthful indiscretions out the windows and “aired out” the car before pulling over.

As his bald head came bobbing up like a peeled apple in a tub at the school carnival, he spat a stream of black tobacco — overpowering the surrounding pine-tree perfume — and barked, “What did’ja throw out back there?”

I answered politely, “Nothing, Officer ‘Smith.’ We were just trying to get rid of a mosquito.”

I had been fibbing to the law for so long, I could hear the mosquito buzzing.

“We’ll see ’bout that smart aleck,” he growled, then invited us to step outside.

After his familiar hands — too macho to search my underwear — explored the rest of my body for the usual fruitless searching, he snarled, “OK, Sloan, I can smell it and know what y’all’ve been up to.”

I explained helpfully, “We smelled something, too, but figured it was my cousin because the pump from his parents’ pond to their bathtub went out again.”

Forgetting his Southern manners, Officer ‘Smith’ snapped, “Wipe that smirk offa’ur face ’cause I’m gonna bust you next time!”

After he peeled away, we retrieved our misdemeanors and felonies from underwear, bushes and creeks, then casually resumed partying as “Won’t Get Fooled Again” blared from the eight-track.


Wendel Sloan’s anecdote was a composite of many experiences, with many officers, but representative of reality. Contact him at:


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