Saturday, June 23, 2012

The King Lives

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The King is alive!  I successfully rappelled down the side of a hotel and thankfully my friend Elizabeth was on hand to take some video.  Thanks to everyone for their support of the Special Olympics and me.  The only part I wish I had on video was after the jump when a woman walked up to me and asked if I was an Olympian.  I could understand her thinking that.

This video is of the interview I gave after my training jump.  (They make you rappel about 30 feet to get the hang of it)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Tomorrow, Elvis Leaves the Building.

This is the Crystal City Hilton.  At 1PM EST tomorrow, I will rappel down the side of it.  Thanks to the generosity of my friends and family, and I really am so grateful, I raised over $1500 for the Special Olympics of Virginia.  And I ordered a special outfit just for the occasion. You can see it below.  I do this for you, my people.

I like to think that I'm going for the "Elvis right before death" with the pill popping and the heavy sweating.  Not so much the Aloha Elvis with the pelvis.  I want to note two things.  First, the jumpsuit is open to the navel.  Not my choice.  Second, I'm not sure if they'll let me take the scarf when I rappel.

Anyway, if you haven't donated and you feel bad because you too want to be a part of this very special occasion, you can still give by clicking on the banner to the left.  I went to the hotel tonight to pickup my shirt and goody bag before the event.  Though with the temp set to reach 100 degrees tomorrow, I'm probably not wearing anything under the jumpsuit.

I got to hear a girl who is a Special Olympian talk today about what it meant to compete.  And while I originally signed up for this because it gave me the opportunity to rappel down a hotel, it was really nice to see how important this money is for them. She had us stand and recite the SO oath.

Let me win, but if I do not win, let me be brave in the attempt.

So I'll post tomorrow, and have photos of my descent.  My friend suggested some Elvis songs for the descent. Like Heartbreak Hotel, or perhaps Can't Help Fallin' In Love.  

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Ain't no Party like a 28 Party....

Apologies for not blogging about this sooner.  I've been alternating heat and cold on my back for the past few days. On Thursday, June 10th, we held a 10-13 party for Natalie.  10-13 refers to the NYPD radio code for Officer Needs Assistance.  It's the most serious thing you can say over the radio, and in the macho culture of the Job usually never gets uttered.  Cops prefer to call a 10-85, or "an 85" which is supposed to be used for non-emergency requests.  And even then, most cops will call an "85 non-emergency) which means you're fighting but don't want to make a big deal out of it.  It's especially impressive when you're putting that out over the air and all you hear is screaming in the background.  A cop named Botta once told me when calling for help to "try and keep the bitch out of my voice" when I key the radio.  Sage words.  Thanks Tony.

However, 10-13 is also used to refer to parties and rackets where you raise money for a cop or a cop's family who are usually dealing with catastrophic medical bills.  This is the case for my friend George, who is taking care of his three sons without his wife.  So, I grabbed the Amtrak up to NYC in the morning, my partner Will picked me up.  He always picks me up, no matter where I come in. I'm not going to talk to much about it, because I'll jinx it.  But God bless that man.

We drove to the 28 up in Harlem.  And let me tell you, a lot has changed since I left there 8 years ago.  And when I say a lot, I mean white people.  Everywhere.  There's a new SPG hotel across from the precinct, which took the place of the slowest supermarket to ever make a sandwich and the only ghetto chinese place we would eat at.  Oh, and there's a gym for kids in a new building next to the precinct, literally a place for toddlers to work out.  Harlem is not Harlem any more, Toto.  I missed the old Harlem.

We then went up to Mount St. Michael's Academy which is a prestigious Catholic school in the Bronx.  Really nice.  Prior to that day, my only knowledge of that place was from my friend in college who went there, Pedro.  Back in the infancy of the internet, I went to the school's homepage and they allowed alumni to write in with updates.  So I wrote in as Pedro that I was married and studying chemical engineering and had a kid and life was good.  (None of this was true) His mother got the alumni magazine and had a heart attack and called him screaming.  Good times.

Anyway, there was a DJ (former 28 guy). 60 cases of beer. 50 cases of soda and water.  Enough trays of mac and cheese and chicken parm and baked ziti, that you could walk to Queens without touching water.  Banners and tables and chairs.  And it was all donated.  The local precinct sent guys to watch the cars parked out front.  It was a day that made me proud to be a cop.

Saw tons of people from the 28 and it was like a great family reunion.  The midnight lieutenant that no one likes was there, which earned him I'm sure a very begrudging respect.  My old XO (Executive Officer) was there.  He now works for a bank recovering ATM cards that people leave in the machine.  (Just kidding Kev.)  He's a bigwig, and it's awesome to call him Kev and he can't do anything about it.

George walked in and gave me a huge hug with tears in his eyes and thanked me profusely for everything.  Puh-leeze.  Seeing him smile while talking to guy's was the only thing I really wanted.  Besides, does he know how easy this is?  I got on a train to support a friend.  I stayed with Will and managed not to offend his wife by leaving my boxers in the kitchen like last time.  This is easy.  If being there brings him a shred of comfort, I'll never leave.

We're family George.  For better or worse.  I love you like a brother and Nat like a sister.  You need anything.  You want to take the kids to DC for a long weekend to get them out of the city, you call me, I hook it up.  I'll even pay for all the museums.  You can have my 1-bedroom and I'll crash with friends.  What's mine is yours.  Currently, that's a lot of Ikea furniture and beer, but I think you'll be fine.

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Give because it's Tuesday!

So there are only a little over 1800 free Kiva loans left.

Click here and loan $25 to someone who needs it a lot more than you.  Well, I suppose you could use the $25, but you're probably not going to spend it on anything good for you.  Seriously, what can you buy with $25?  Fruit?  Well, okay that's pretty good for you.  But asides from fruit, you can probably only spend $25 on 2.4 minutes of mediocrity inside your car at the Hunts Point Market with "Sparkyles" (If she asks if you want it with hot sauce, I cannot explain how important it is that you say NO, in no uncertain terms)

So help someone on a Tuesday build a boat, or buy a cow.  And that cow doesn't require you to take a course of anti-biotics or apply topical creams anywhere.  Win win.