Don’t Fear Cops Bearing Rosé

June 25th, 2010 by Harrumpher Leave a reply »

Even though I’m a life-long crank, I was surprised to hear my wife call to the basement that a police officer was there to see me. I immediately responded, “It isn’t Linskey, it is?”

Well, he was.

This is one of those reaping what you sow moments…and a pleasant one at that. The city’s number one officer, Chief Superintendent Daniel P. Linskey had walked three houses East, bearing:

  • a bottle of wine (a modest Spanish rosé, well suited to warm weather)
  • a 2-page, single-spaced explanatory letter
  • neighborly acquaintanceship

This visit was a direct result of my sporadic exchange with Commissioner Edward Davis. Most recently, I had perhaps unfairly involved Linskey.

As a sometimes driver from Boston (and not a Boston Driver) and very frequent cyclist, I have serious, loud opinions about safety, enforcement, and how the BPD officers should behave. I had a couple of exchanges with Davis about this, including his form-letter response that cops obey the traffic laws because they get annual training telling them to do so. I sent a recent letter back suggesting that was more pixie dust than proof.

With a bit of jaundiced glee, I recently saw Linskey head home, breaking a series of laws on the final leg, as he passed me cycling up our very steep hill. I sent a teasing letter to Davis nothing that blue-and-white with plate POLICE 1 blew a stop sign, turned without a signal and pulled to his house without signaling — three sort of standard Boston-driver actions within 100 yards.

That prompted the visit from Linskey, it seems. His letter was also surprising in contrition. He noted that he had a physical reason to hurry home, as well as that he had been involved in his many non-police, after-duty tasks, including the likes of baseball, football, lacrosse, school and music with his kids.

Actually while he has a nice base salary (reported recently as over $179,000), he is not one of those BPD members who doubles his salary or more with paid details. Instead, he volunteers with youth sports and the like. Good on him. He’s a serious dad and not greedy.

Regardless, he and I had a nice chat in the living room. He couldn’t stay, but he ended up meeting not my sons, but my wife and three visiting New Mexico relatives, my sister, niece and grandnephew. It was a, well, neighborly visit.

I confess that even Dan Linskey’s graciousness will not make me less of a crank. I still believe that our cops have a real duty to model proper behavior, including excellent driving.

Meeting Linskey has certainly made me feel better toward  him personally.

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