Blog Archive

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Joey Gets Busted

After the book fair, we took the kids home, then I took the Su Casa minivan back to pick up free leftover books. We got fewer this year than last year, just four boxes, and most of them are more high-school level and appropriateness.

With all that extra stuff, I didn't get home until maybe 7:45 or so. When I got to my block of Marshfield, Joey's mom was coming up the street. "Joey's out back and the police are there," she told me. "They told me they were eating pizza at their friends' house, but they went out here to do graffiti."

I went around the corner with her to the alley, where there were four or maybe even six police officers, some on the ground and some on the roof of a building across the alley from my house. Joey and two of his pals had climbed a pretty high fence from the alley to the building. By the time we got there the cops had them climbing back over the fence. They had found a backpack full of spray cans; don't know whose it was. The other guys with him were not from our block--one was a teeny tiny shortie. He said he was ten but he looked about eight. The cops had to change handcuffs because his wrists were small enough to wriggle out of the first pair they put on him.

After some debate about what to do with the smallest one (and some confusion about his age), the cops decided to take him in, too. One officer spoke some Spanish and explained what was going on to Joey's mom. Another officer told the kids, "We should have just left you there and let the dogs get you."

I thought Joey's mom was going to have to go get him herself, so I volunteered to go get one-day el passes for each of us. I went to the check cashing place at 47th and Western, but they were out of one-day passes. I got one three-day pass thinking she could go get him and pay for him, then I could use the pass tomorrow. Well this was a classic of not really understanding the conversation. His dad was going to pick him up, so then Antonia asked if she could borrow the pass tomorrow morning because she has to go to work. Tomorrow is when I really needed it, but I let her have it because I can just pay cash for the bus and take my bike home (it's parked downtown right now for complicated reasons).

So I sat with Joey's mom while we waited to hear what was going on. Dawn was with us for a while--like while her mother broke down crying and I gave her a hug and Dawn just stood there--but then she took the car and went out. I'm still not sure if she was going to see her dad or what. Joey's dad had to find some ID so he could take him home, so that took a while. Mom's phone doesn't work well, so she was using my phone but getting calls back on hers and then her phone would cut off. Plus as usual I wasn't really understanding what was happening.

We talked about some things but I don't know if they made any impression. She's mad at Dawn for not going to school for three days (last week? not sure) and being late. Big Picture wanted her to come to school Friday but she didn't go because she was working. (Dawn told me she's taking physics on Saturdays at Kelly to make up some science credit so she can graduate on time. We're supposed to talk later this week--we'll see if it happens. She and I aren't talking much any more.)

Mom's ready to put Joey in Boys Town/Casa Tepeyac, but Joey has said he doesn't want to go and I bet his dad would back him up about not going. I of course am completely frustrated since I saw all this coming months (more like years) ago and couldn't do a damn thing to stop the train wreck.

Finally around 10:30 Mom heard from Joey's dad that he had picked him up and Joey would stay at his house tonight. So I came home and looked at real estate listings in Rogers Park before mustering the strength to blog. Rogers Park condos look so good right now I cannot even tell you. But who'd be fool enough to buy my house? We even lost our gay guys. Dang.

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