The Critical Mass

A menace to society

A couple of weeks ago, I’m strolling around downtown on my lunch break when I come across a bunch of cops in the the midst of breaking up a major threat to society. Loud R&B music.

A car is stopped in the middle of the street, the driver already tucked away in the rear seat of a police cruiser. “What’s going on?” I ask the fellow who runs the hot dog cart at the intersection.

“The guy was playing his music too loud, they told him to turn it down. He didn’t.”

An argument ensued, the R&B enthusiast is arrested. “While I’m standing here, might as well give me a hot dog,” I said.

A week later I’m in Kithnos Fish Market, just browsing amongst the mackerel, when someone starts whistling. Loudly, tunelessly. I can’t name that tune, I can’t even say the melody is familiar. But now I can’t focus on the fish. I turn around to see what’s going on. It’s an old guy, sitting at a small table, looking harmless. Just whistling to himself, and the rest of us. No one calls the cops.

So Slim Whitman gets a pass. Some folks say they don’t want the government running their lives, but they’re fine with it if it keeps R. Kelly off the streets.

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