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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Monday, April 24, 2006

Afternoon Promenade in Easton

The weather was nice and, as usual, I was lazy. Sunshine provided an excuse to abandon dusty record books at the courthouse and walk the streets of Easton. A breath of fresh air, instead of all those fiberglass particles raining down from the judges' new $43 million Taj Mahal, might do me some good. Yes, I'm a part-time streetwalker, but no one ever tries to pick me up. I'm probably too handsome.

As I perambulated along 13th & Washington, I came across 2 young ladies (about 7 or 8 yrs. old), doing something I wasn't - making money. They had a nice lemonade stand, a decent price ($0.50 a pop), and two winning smiles. Remember, this is Easton, where people are shot every 15 minutes and only idiots go for walks. Perhaps this was a hallucination. You see, I take drugs, like most streetwalkers. But the drugs I take are doctor's orders, although I'm sure it has nothing to do with all the fiberglass dust, cement dust and strange smells coming from what one judge calls a "commitment to justice." Yep, my illness is a small price to pay so our judges can step from their private bathrooms to mete out justice to the little people. After all, they're not slinging hamburgers. And I don't mind the indignity of cavity searches every time I enter the new building if I know it will make just one judge feel just a little more secure.

I made my way back to fiberglass jungle only to realize it was time to go. Darn! I packed up and cruised down Washington Street, only to see that the lemonade stand was still up and the girls had a new customer.

It was a cop!

Now remember, this is Easton, where cops are reputed to belong to some secret Nazi order. From what I read, these guys unleash hounds on P-burg people and yank wrestling stars headfirst from cars. They're stars of a recent state grand jury report, a federal investigation, and worst of all - they've accumulated enough ET turkeys to give all of Easton a great Thanksgiving dinner.

But these girls weren't afraid of this guy at all. Rather than run in terror, they were plying him with lemonade, and he seemed very happy to share a few minutes with these young entrepreneurs. Everyone was smiling. It was a like a Norman Rockwell painting. Totally disgusting!

Could it be that this police officer, like most Easton cops, was happy at an opportunity to build positive community relations with 2 young ladies who will fondly remember that sunny afternoon as they grow older? This was not part of some Weed 'n Seed program run by bureaucrats, but simply the initiative of a good cop. This guy did not seem to share the paranoid fear of citizens encouraged by our local judges.

But I keep forgetting - this is Easton, where there are no good cops, but plenty of good judges ensconced in marble and steel tombs, nicely insulated from the people they supposedly serve. I obviously suffered a prescription drug induced mirage.