I say, have I ever told you the story of my ignominious arrest?
It’s a terrific wheeze, do let me tell.
I was quite the bold fellow about town in my youth, I don’t mind telling you.
In the year of our Lord, Two Thousand and Two, in London’s West End, I was arrested – for the second time, mark you.
(You may already know the story of the first time.)
Having attended a demonstration in support of oppressed peoples, I repaired to a local hostelry with friends and fellow protestors.
After consuming a few pints of ale, with rumbling stomachs, we left in search of nourishment.
On passing one particularly salubrious establishment, Edmund decided to enter, whereupon he promptly rolled onto the floor and lay still, in a delicious physical satire of the opulent surroundings.
“Cripes, I’m famished. Where can one obtain a decent standard of refreshment in this locality”, cried Edmund, revelling in his tipsy state.
Having (eventually) been ushered out of this establishment, we continued on in the hope of a more appropriately modest hostelry for our victuals. On seeing an abandoned shopping trolley in the street, Edmund cajoled me into jumping on this wire-frame chariot for a ride, piloted by the inebriated fool himself.
At a busy street corner, I abandoned my urban wheelbarrow, for fear of being Barrymored by a lurking BMW; thankfully my presence of mind was more present than Edmund’s fuzzy-brained efforts, he having tipped me out of the trolley in a sudden jerking of the handles.
At this juncture, two officers of the crown appeared as if from nowhere, intent on creating havoc and thwarting our youthful hi-jinks.
These antagonistic, anti-social, and quite unnecessarily rude interlopers made themselves no friends with their ugly attitude (“I say, what a pair of torn-faced cunts”, quoth Edmund).
However, ever the peacemaker, I endeavoured to return the trolley from whence it had been purloined, as was the insistence of HM’s finest.
As I carried out this task (much to the chagrin of my belligerent companions), one of the officers accosted me.
“Do you want to get arrested?” she barked, in a tone that could only be described as hostile. I politely enquired as to what might necessitate my being remanded in custody, and although I cannot quite recall the exact response, it contained the words “drunk” and “disorderly”.
I am not often lost for words, Dear Reader, but surveying the scene, I could not bring myself to dignify this aggressive and frankly ludicrous rhetorical question with a riposte.
Why I, in attempting to placate these brutes, should suffer the indignity of being attacked in such a manner was utterly perplexing.
Eventually, the shouting subsided. Perhaps in recognition of our superior numbers, and shamed by their quite shocking lack of manners, the obtruders relented.
Pride had been maintained, it seemed, as neither side had seen fit to back down.
In a jocular fashion, I remarked to one of my associates, quite innocently quoting one of these young “rappers”, who in those days frequented the town:
“We come in peace, fuck the police.”
At this point the hitherto-retreating officers took all leave of their remaining senses, and charged at me, brandishing handcuffs. The ruffians manhandled and hounded me until they had me subdued, up against the window of a restaurant (Pizza Hut, if memory serves).
Not satisfied with this vicious assault, the senior of the two braggards hurled insults, snarling some errant nonsense about his not being my sibling.
In the ensuing melee, Edmund threatened to have the officers flogged, and I am ashamed to say that some of my cohorts did indeed stoop to the level of enjoining my assailants in coarse, insulting language.
Realising that any attempt to reason with the beasts was quite useless, I submitted, reluctantly, in as dignified a manner as the quite horrid situation allowed.
At the police station, the desk sergeant (an arrogant, superior sort to whom I took an instant dislike) regarded me as one would a piece of chewing gum stuck to the sole of one’s shoe. I am sorry to report that his brusque tone and condescending attitude displayed the same distinct lack of manners shown by his underlings.
If this is the state of HM Finest, I thought, let us “police” ourselves and have nothing more to do with these hooligans!
Having languished in Charing Cross Police Station for several hours, I was ultimately released, and witnessing the sight of my friends waiting to greet me caused my heart to swell with pride and gratitude.
Edmund, however, showed little remorse for his part in the whole ghastly episode, remarking:
“I say, old boy, did they give you what for? Slippy fuckers, those stairs!”
“You do these officers a disservice, Sir”, I said loudly, bowing deeply toward the station door, “for these gentlemen were most gracious hosts, offering refreshment in the form of water from a polystyrene cup, as well as a bench on which to retire and a bucket should I have needed to expel any fluids. I shall not stand idly by and hear you denigrate these fine public servants, you devilish cad.”
For you see, Dear Reader, the greatest victory is in maintaining one’s dignity in the face of scurrilous malfeasance.
Also, my cousin, who’s a QC, took them to fucking cleaners, and I got compensation.