All he can think about when he here’s the word Catford is the Baron Knights song of the seventies where the Smurfs are on the run. He was on the run. ‘Was’ being the past tense.
Holy shit police cell for the night courtesy of Catford. Back to bread and water and a hard blue rubber mattress. No TV, no soft lumpy mattress, no lovely hard pillow no smoking, no fuckin privileges at all. No nothing just, ‘shut the fuck up convict I’ve had a bad day,’ from the desk sergeant. Yeagh, you had a bad day when you were born – tosser.
McKillicuddy thinks best to keep my gob shut; don’t exactly know how this is going to pan out. He’ll be seeing a doctor soon can tell him or her his problems, maybe he’ll try and get a hotel room for the night? Patrick Michael McKillicuddy, that’s me – drug trafficker/eejit, international coast to coaster, can safely say that sitting here at this exact moment in time is another one of those defining moments. Rock fucking bottom.
I’ve only got writing material because they didn’t search me properly. What a fuckin liberty. Again the well oiled machine has let me down; I’m sitting here totally flummoxed, don’t know what to do. I’m in agony and turmoil all over again and for all the wrong reasons. Feel like crying only I’m too numb.
Great, just got fed. Some curry type thing and a lump of chocolate cake. Oh, and a cup of tepid water. I’ve got bread, crisps, pot noodles, tuna fish, corned beef and orange fanta in my bags. Won’t even bother asking, as a punch in the gob often offends. When I was searched at Croydon they took my fags and my lighter. Not returned, is that not theft? Maybe I’ll report it seeing I’m in a police station. Mind you there’s ‘No Smoking’ in police cells either. No offers of a phone call to let my loved ones, I mean one, to let them know where I am. Human rights my bollocks. Asked the duty sergeant to contact my solicitor and tell him where I was, after all you see it on the telly when someone is in the cop shop they always say ‘oi, phone my brief.’
It’s around seven and the desk sergeant has called the Doctor to come and see me. The only reason I wanted my solicitor to know here I was, was in case I died and they didn’t know from where to collect the body. You laugh; I can assure me at this point nothing would surprise me. Spoke to the Doc. around nine. Boy was he pissed off, sharp and abrupt. No bloody wonder it had taken him two hours to get here, simply to issue me with one beta Blocker and two paracetemol. The police are not allowed to give me my personal, medication from my personal property, in front of an officer of the law, inside a police station, in case something goes missing and I sue them. I mean, ‘come on, how fucked up is that?’
Told the Doctor I was genuinely frightened of cracking up after having had such a gruelling day. He prescribed me a sleeping tablet. Asked an officer if the desk sergeant had spoken to my solicitor yet. He said “the desk sergeant has gone off duty and it was too late to phone anybody.” Told the officer I wasn’t happy and I was getting tired of politeness being a one way street. He tried to reassure me and told me to give him a shout later if I wanted a cup of tea. A cup of fuckin tea will make everything all right then? The bell doesn’t work here so how the fuck can I give him a shout. The cells are nowhere near the reception so I’ll have to bang and kick the door to get there attention and will probably get the shit kicked out of me for kicking the door. Undeterred I bang the door; someone shouts “stop banging the door or there’ll be trouble.” No fuckin tea then? If I get the same sort of treatment tomorrow I swear to god I’ll end up doing life for mitigated manslaughter. If you really think about it, just served three months in prison and after one trip to court you need to spend the night in a police station, and sleep in your clothes, without the offer of a wash or a brush of the old teeth.
“Please Sir may I have a cup of coffee?”
“Sure, no problem give me a minute.”
Asked to shut the fuck up after banging the door in an attempt to get the cup of coffee had been promised earlier. A very young looking cop comes to the hatch, tries to be helpful and makes me laugh it off. Fair play to him, get the coffee. The sleeping tablet has long worn off and I’m primed to get nasty, have had enough and it ain’t going to be pretty. Still haven’t had a fag. Only wish I knew where I was going. Now know I’m going to be awake for the rest of the day. As an ex publican I still know a few guys in the met so, ask one of the officers to phone Exeter to see if my mates on duty. Stupid move and I tell him not to bother, clutching at straws again. It’s too late for me now I’ll just have to accept what’s coming to me. Another officer asks me if I want some more coffee? Politely I say ‘Yes.’
Getting light, not long now until the beginning of a new day and whatever it may bring. Am totally numb in a daze of fuzzy exhaustion. Have lost any faith in the machine, from now on they’re all bastards, ‘yes’ or ‘no’ is all they’re going to get out of me. Now I know, in their eyes, all I am is a label, a convicted criminal. Enough is enough, no more Mr nice guy. Just give me one chance then, bang. Really will be in here for a long time is this how being in the machine is meant to stop you from re-offending? Well past my breaking point, if I’m ready to snap what chance or hope do others less fortunate than me have? Must hold it together, must stay cool, can’t loose it fuck me it’s hard. Need to lie down but can’t it’s too sore.
The sun is cracking thorough my conscience yet all I can see is the floor; just stand with my head leaning on the wall, staring at the floor, swimming, stranded, broken, alone and empty.
I’d love to be able to take a shower or simply get washed. Depending on which officer you speak to we will be moving soon. I think there’s about nine of us altogether. Still, there’s coffee en route, so I’ll just have to sit here and chill. The madness begins all over again like a recurring nightmare it simply does not get any better. If you end up in the machine you’re fucked. Asked for some toilet roll, was given eight sheets, had a pee, missed the toilet, would like to wipe it up but can’t be bothered going through the indignity and embarrassment of asking for another eight sheets of toilet paper having to explain why I missed the toilet in the first place.
Sitting here with the biggest boner I’ve had since my birthday five months previous. Not really the best time or place for this to happen. My thoughts turn to the librarian at Lewes again, would love to hook up with her in a different life. Now convinced they put something in the food at Lewes, yours truly has never stood to attention like this for a long time. That department has been totally unemployed and dysfunctional for the past three months, never even had a sexual thought, honest. Now I find myself walking round a police cell bollock naked, with a raging hard on. He looks quit well, the old John Thomas, but this is neither the time nor the place. Get dressed; no sooner have I put my clothes on when a WPC opens the flap with my coffee. Two minutes earlier I do believe I would have had some explaining to do or maybe I’d have got lucky? Sit and sip my coffee sheepishly. If only she knew?
Feeling invincible, feel as if I have enough pent up anger, to walk through this wall, not a scratch and head down the main road for a pint, without a care in the world. Lost the plot, imagine how a psychiatrist could analyse these thoughts. Forgot to mention they had roused me around three o’clock in the morning to speak to my solicitor. Turns out the messages had gotten muddled up and they had phoned him. Needless to say he wasn’t a happy bunny started to apologise but ended up giving up because I’m sick and tired of trying to deal with the constant fuck ups. Getting increasingly annoyed with anyone and everyone, trying to find a scapegoat for my current situation but not succeeding. Out of sheer boredom and frustration I start to do some sit ups and press ups. Gives me time to think to, to figure out who is to blame. ‘Nobodies fault but mine’ by Led Zeppelin plays a mean tune in my head. Need to stop trying, need to let things work themselves out, need to simply deal with it and get on with it. Get on with the rest of my life.
Shit, my gut is massive; really do need to get treatment. It has ballooned in the past few months as if someone was standing beside me blowing it up with a foot pump. The timing of events never ceases to amaze me. These few press ups and sit ups have made me decide to embark on a fitness regime. As soon as I sit down they bring me a stodgy microwave breakfast meal. Well, I think I’ve died and gone to heaven; toast, beans, poached egg and sausage, culinary heaven. Mmm, healthy or what? Finish my breakfast and have a dump. Fuck me, no soap, toilet paper or towel. I wash my arse in the sink and dry my hands on my jeans. No health and safety issues in this place, eh?
It was only the other day spoke to someone about not having a piece of toast for over three months, he said it was ‘something to do with health and safety or was it security; razor blades could be imbedded in the hard bread and used as a Chinese fighting star to attack officers with.’ No fucking comment! What a treat this is! You see, you whinge, moan and complain about how bad your life is and all of a sudden they make it better by giving you two slices of toast. The egg looks like heaven, haven’t had a fried egg fro three months either. The creative devil in me takes over and I chop up the egg, sausage, and beans and put them between the two bits of toast. Result, the best fucking toastie I’ve ever had in my strange but wonderful life.
Next I’m allowed to have a sink wash, toothbrush and toothpaste in the wee sink in the corridor guarded and observed closely by two beautiful WPCs. Not joking they really are gorgeous. Was going to strip off and throw John out to see what happened, but thought better of it. After all I did just get some toast. Although I did tell them about the antics of getting washed in the sink back at Lewes roughly twenty four hours ago:
Picture this – I’m wearing prison issue blue boxer shorts that are too tight round the waist but not in the groin area and one bullock is hanging out, got a pair of brown slippers on and I’m suffering from death by Salad Cream (18stone). I’m caught in the headlights again, slightly startled by having to have a conversation with an ‘eye’, a female eye to boot.
Eye says ‘up early aren’t ya,’ in an inquisitive voice. Blink blink.
I can’t think of anything useful to say so I splutter ‘yeagh couldn’t sleep.’
‘Eye’ replies ‘ah well, sure you’ll be out soon.’
The flap closes as suddenly as it was opened. Is ‘eye’ referring to my imminent release or just my getting out for the day?
Can you imagine how the scene may have looked to the female officer who subsequently had to fill in a report of her patrol:
“5.35 am on my normal patrol on ‘F’ wing I did a random check on cell 42 and opened the cell door observation flap of David Ervine number VP4677. To my immediate distress I observed Ervine, rolling on the floor, exposing his genitals and in obvious pain (or ecstasy) with tears running down his face. In my professional opinion and as an experienced officer, I can only assume that Ervine was having some sort of fit, mental breakdown or playing with himself. Out of genuine concern I asked him if he was OK. All he could do was splutter ‘can’t sleep.’ If I didn’t know any better I would say that he was laughing at me, innit. I tell him that he shouldn’t worry, he’d be out soon. I hope I didn’t say anything wrong because I could have sworn I heard him mumbling incoherently; something about the system, someone called ‘Wilson’ and MFI.”
They were having a good laugh and I knew they wanted it, honestly. Personally I was kaking myself in case yours truly raised his ugly head again. It’s been five months since I’ve had a bit of nookie and I’m standing half naked, only a pair of jeans on, in between two gorgeous women. Oh god I can smell their perfume, have forgotten how much I enjoy the company of women. Away with ya, ya dirty wee beast. Get yee away from me Satan. All joke on the side; the two WPCs where actually very kind and helpful in a very awkward and embarrassing situation.
Ask the new desk sergeant about my medication, which is long overdue. She politely and authoritatively tells me what they are allowed to do. They must phone the FME to come and examine me again and to issue me some drugs; it’ll take around an hour depending on the traffic. So, I patiently wait and she arrives about forty minutes later. She, the FME is very helpful and gives me a good check up and listens attentively to my concerns. I can feel the line of her underwear as her thigh presses on my shoulder.
She explains her own concerns and states that she is genuinely concerned, confirms my concerns and confirms her fears to the desk sergeant who also becomes concerned. Now I’m really concerned. Actually, I’m relieved and the tablets go to work straight away. Have been struck with a startling realisation which is – I’m surrounded by beautiful women in uniform. Apart from the ones locked up, there are no men in the whole fuckin station – at all. There’s a doctor, four WPCs and a Desk Sergeant, all women and all supermodels. Not a friggin ape in sight. Supermodels and handcuffs! Oh, happy days. Suddenly develop a Cheshire cat grin. I’m sitting on my hands dangling my legs from the bench, a bit like a school boy waiting to see the headmaster. One of the models asks me if I’m OK. I bite my bottom lip and nod my head while the slobbers run down my chin. Aagghh the bells, the bells. Receive a few strange looks, if only they knew what I was thinking. The wee Irish devil and I are having a very nasty party.