The Road to Perdition

I heard a song today that reminded me of my one and only Fre.aknik experience. Nevermind that the song was ‘Put em on the glass” by Sir Mix A Lot. Uh, no, I did not put “them” on the glass and, yes, my Fre.aknik experience was just as bad as the song. So why am I writing about it? Because mizinspiredmind asked me to and because any story that ends with college coeds in the slammer is worth telling.

Picture it, Columbus, 1993 or 4…

So my two girlfriends and I decided that we were heading to Atlanta for Fr.eaknik. I didn’t really know much about Fr.eaknik, just that it was where every black person in the world went each spring. One of my friends found us a place to stay for free (some chick she went to high school with) and I rented us a car. This is the part where I tell you that I didn’t actually rent the car. I was 19 and didn’t have a job or a credit card or car insurance, so my boyfriend rented a car and gave me the keys. Kids…that’s illegal, FYI.

So we were on the road to Atlanta and Senora Leadfoot (that would be me) got pulled over for speeding. No biggie. The cop was super friendly. He even made fun of me for going the wrong way, which would have saved me from getting a ticket. He gave me my ticket and we were on our way.

The trip itself was pretty uneventful. Looking back, now that I live in Atlanta, I know we ended up at Piedmont Park and I remember driving on 85. I think we ended up at a mall, or maybe the Underground, where we met a prepubescent Usher who tried to talk to my friend.  She turned him down and I am sure she is still pissed about that.  I am pretty sure we stayed in a dreadful apartment in College Park, which may be the reason I have an aversion to SW Atlanta to this day. On the way home, I reacquainted myself with the swine after three years of pork-free living. Yeah, I thought that was the most exciting moment of the trip.

Fast forward 6 hours or so. We had just crossed the Ohio River and were a couple of hours from home. I was sleeping in the passenger seat, one friend was in the the backseat studying and the other friend was driving. All of the sudden, the car starts to slow down.  We were being pulled over and the driver was mumbling something like, “oh no oh no oh no.” I shrugged it off thinking it must be her first speeding ticket. The cop took her license to run it and she was looking sick to her stomach. I asked her what was wrong and she didn’t speak.

Next thing I know, and nothing ever good follows the phrase “next thing I know”, a police cruiser pulled up in front of us and backed up to our front bumper. Then another cruiser pulled up to our left. Then another cruiser pulled up to our right. You guys, we were surrounded by police cruisers on the side of Interstate 71 like an episode of Miami Vice.

You know what comes next, right?

“TAKE THE KEYS OUT OF THE IGNITION AND PUT THE KEYS ON THE ROOF OF THE CAR!!!”

Dude was talking to us on the speaker! We had to keep our hands raised and slowly step out of the car like common criminals. I had no idea what was going on but I was scared.

They took the driver up front to one cruiser and they took me and the other girl to the back cruiser. We were sitting in the back and I asked the cop what was going on. He informed us that our friend, the driver, had an outstanding warrant. We asked him what for and he said he didn’t know but it was a felony. A felony! I was rolling with a felon and didn’t even know it.

Okay, so here is how the rest of the evening played out…

They took ole girl to JAIL. They took me and the other girl to a local Burger King and left us there. They towed the car because it was not in any of our names and the rental company told them to take it. The burger king they dropped us at just happened to be 30 minutes away from my family, so I called my cousin and had her come get us. My friend’s boyfriend drove two hours to get us and drove us back to school.

The felon? She spent two nights in jail and was later convicted and put on probation. Her crime? Some shady stealing of money and processing fake refunds from her employer, a top purveyor of bath gels and lotions. I think it’s safe to say her life is ruined. How do you bounce back from a felony at 20 years old?

My boyfriend had to pay crazy fees for the car situation and I vowed never to return to Atlanta again.  I moved here 10 years later. *shrugs*

So that, my friends, is my Fre.aknik story. Not at all as exciting as I had hoped, but memorable nonetheless.

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28 Responses to The Road to Perdition

  1. Mrs. AKAtude says:

    Ok, I’m sure this was not funny to you then, but the way you just told this story has me LOL! “Next thing I kow” <—– this is a classic statement! OMG! Thanks for this laugh tonight, I needed it!

  2. InnerDiva says:

    Forgive my ignorance as I had a sheltered childhood, but what were you supposed to be putting on the glass? Anywho,I’m still trying to figure out why burger king was the best place to take y’all.

    (Don’t question why I’m commenting from my phone at 6am, 2 days after having a baby. I demand that you feel flattered and important instead…and know that there’s not a lot you can do in a hospital at 6am, lol)

  3. Petite Pearl says:

    Funny story, well now anyway. I think almost every black college student during that time period had a friend to rent them a car so they could go to freaknik. My older sister did this and let’s just say the car got totaled at spaghetti junction. SMH.

  4. AR Gal says:

    “I think it’s safe to say her life is ruined. How do you bounce back from a felony at 20 years old?”

    Really Babs? LOL

    • A felony?!? What kind of job can you get? No, seriously.

      • AR Gal says:

        It may not be a desired job but people can still find work. And I seriously doubt her life is ruined (unless she chose to continue on a path of destruction). Sure, she will have to work (much) harder to achieve her life goals but ruined? Nah.

      • ames says:

        I know a guy who engaged in credit card theft through the mail while in his early 20’s and while at a law school that is regularly ranked as No. 1 in the country. He was convicted of multiple federal offenses. It took a while but the school let him back in and the state bar finally let him in. The benefits of being a white collar criminal. You commit the crime while wearing a white collar and once you are done with the jump suit, you put the white collar back on and get to work.

        With a felony, you have to limit yourself to executive positions.

      • heartdrops says:

        “With a felony, you have to limit yourself to executive positions.” – bahahahahahaa! You never disappoint! lol!

      • Barrister says:

        I’d say that her options were definitely limited for period of time or continue to be unless she has gotten her record expunged! Lots and lots of things that you can’t do with a felony.

  5. This gave me all kinds of life and reminds me of the foolery I engaged in at the Kappa Beach Party in Galveston, TX back in the day!

  6. 1969 says:

    I never made it down to Freaknik but Philly Greek Picnic, Jones Beach Greekfest and Greek Freak at Syracuse? Uh yeah….no comment.

    • cbean says:

      Yes, let’s not even talk about Greek Picnic in Philly. First my car broke down and when we got out waiting on AAA, men driving by thought we were hookers. The next day we got the hostess’s car stuck in a ditch cause that was the only way out of the parking lot and she couldn’t understand “Don’t go straight, turn the wheel.” And last but not least, the nose dive I took while trotting over to speak to an Alpha I knew from school. Yeah, getting up like nothing happened in front of 1000s of people is damn near impossible.

    • MrsTDJ says:

      Oh, yes, Jones Beach Greekfest. The stories, the stories! Viva la memories!!

  7. Tarsha R says:

    This was funnay!

    I have fun, fond party girl memories of my two Freak.nic excursions! The 90s were full of all kinds of awesomeness.

    I got a speeding ticket on my way to Freaknic from Dayton too…cops were hella friendly too. They pulled over an entire freeway of folks pushing 85-90 down 75

    Good times, good times

  8. Sha Boogie says:

    Whoa. even being pulled over for speeding makes me nervous, lol.

  9. Honest says:

    Wow! That’s hilarious now but I know I wouldn’t have found it funny back then. Phewwww what ever happened the the chick?

  10. K says:

    When I lived in Atlanta, I was once coerced into going to Freaknik with a friend I worked with. Even having been in a sorority in college, what I saw still kind of set my mind ablaze at the tender age of 21. Heh.

  11. dmac says:

    this was funny! thanks for being you!

  12. MrsTDJ says:

    Ha ha! Glad that YOU weren’t locked up with your buddy over the car nonsense. I never made it down to Freaknik. We talked about it but somehow our plans just never materialized.

  13. Ahhh Freaknic……I can’t even mention out loud the things I did spring 94………

  14. Bunny says:

    *Reminder to self* NEVER eat tuna salad whilst reading about Babs’ experiences down at Freaknik. Almost all over the desk!!! LOL!!!!

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