Six Shooter Junction – Guy I was talking to said he’s waiting 180 days for his day in court.
What happens then?
“I can’t tell you,” he said. Scared to death. It’s the first time he’s been allowed to return to Waco outside of a court date. His eyes look haunted, like a deer in the headlights living its final moments – but every day, all day long – forever.
They were all scared to death, as they came up to the microphone to speak their peace, record their memory, tell their story.
Something remarkable about the gathering was the apparent lack of security. There was not one uniformed police officer in sight – anywhere.
The only sign of official cooperation was a portable toilet.
As the people spoke, the line at the mic grew longer and a man in a brown porkpie resembling the black one Sons of Liberty Riders MC President Butch “Popeye” Moss wears stepped up to say a few words.
That’s the Heisenberg hat worn by your carwash professional in the hit series, “Breaking Bad.” Jazz musicians like Charles Mingus and Dizzy Gillespie wore them in the forties and fifties, as well as Eddie “Popeye” Egan of the New York Police Department narcotics squad, Mr. French Connection.
The mystery speaker said he’s running for McLennan County Sheriff, an event that won’t happen until the next election cycle rolls around in 2020.
In an interesting aside, Moss revealed that the night before the Wave 7 rally, the editorial page director of the local daily phoned to tell him the Sheriff’s Office would have no officers on the scene.
Moss found out he was right when he arrived and saw not one cop.
“He said it was because they’re broke,” said Popeye. And he laughed.
Mr. Heisenberg proceeded to make his speech, said Moss, sprinkling it liberally with what Popeye called “F-bombs,” the kind you really don’t want the kids hearing.
So, there were no cops present. Interesting.
And then I took a picture of the guest keynote speaker, Jim Harris, the behavioral counselor, and when I got back home, when I downloaded the snapshot, the action triggered something that wiped my phone of numbers and pictures.
No one had to get me on the ground and demand the phone with the muzzle of a gun pointed at my head.
They just hacked me.
Life goes on. I was a journalist when all I had was a roll of quarters and an intimate knowledge of the quietest public phones in every building I knew. And then a taxi driver ran over an enclosed booth on a corner in New York, and Ma Bell started placing them all in the open, so you could run if matters became hectic. Sayonara to the quiet phones.
But you can still get the job done. Phone or no phone.
It’s a long, lonely road.
So mote it be.