It was Monday night in San Francisco. Cale lay on his bunk in his blue jump suit, hands behind his head, looking through a wire mess of springs to the seersucker pinstriped mattress above him. The bed was empty. His cell was empty, but the others were filling up quickly. Drunks snored and pissed themselves, drug addicts sat in various positions heads down, rocking back and forth holding themselves, as if physically holding themselves’ together. Other types of drug users ardently talked to themselves pacing the edge of the bars, avoiding physical or eye contact. Black, White, Asian, Hispanic and the Green; the full cultural spectrum mashed together by crime and in many cases, hatred of cops and society for what it did to them; self proclaimed victims; multiplied, in some cases, by their parents’ issues of adultery, child rape, addiction, alcoholism, drug abuse, robbery, assault, murder, car theft, public intoxication, vandalism, and of course the all inclusive phrase, ‘wrong place – wrong time’. A constant hum of incoherent gibberish;
“Man, I could do hard time.”
An officer escorted a young white man down the corridor and stopped at Cale’s jail cell door.
Cale looked over his elbow and watched as the police officer opened the door and guided the man into the cell. The officer closed the door, locked it and unlocked the man’s hand-cuffs from outside the cell. Looking at Cale the officer explained, “You get the white collars tonight.”
Cale looked back up to the mattress above him pondering all that had happened since he started the Cho museum case. Paula Henderson’s murder did not fit into the picture.