One night during undergrad, the shrill unwelcome telephone ringing disturbs our sleep. My then-boyfriend, CCB, fumbles for the phone. It is his Mom. She is hysterical and needs us to drive over to his little sister’s house. Through her staccato speech, we are able to glean the following:
CCB's parents, who lived in KC, received a phone call from a stranger claiming to have their daughter, K. They had tried calling K multiple times but the line was busy. They attempted to have the Operator break through the line (remember when that was an option?) with no success. After calling the local police, they called us. K and her husband, B., lived three miles away from us so we dress immediately and depart. As I am leaving, I also put my handgun into my bag.
As the child of a police officer, I have been shooting on a police range since age 12. I have logged countless hours of target practice. At age 16, my Father presented me with my first handgun and the 100 rules associated with owning one. My Mom would not allow me to have it in the house. Period. When I left for college, I clearly could not have it and live in a sorority but when I moved into my own apartment, it came too.
And in a moment of potential danger, my natural instinct was to take the gun with me. Would my Father endorse this plan? Hard to say. When is a good time to ask? Not in the middle of the night when you are shacked up with your boyfriend.
We took a short cut and pulled in the street behind their house. We approached the house like Stacy Sheridan and TJ Hooker. I slid the backdoor open seeing no one and crept into the house, gun in hand. Coming around the stairs to the main living room we saw no one but heard voices in the bedroom. He opens the door and I go in with gun in hand. Staring back at us are K. and B. and two uniformed police officers. They don’t even have time to shout “drop the weapon” before I moved out of the way. K. asks what in the world we are doing there.
We catch our breath and relay the story of the phone call and for some reason, this produces laughter from them as well as the officers. We are churned up by the circumstances and cannot make the connection between kidnapping, guns, and laughter.
Luckily, this was a college town with very little hard crime. It was also a less violent time period than now. And police officers in the Midwest likely exposed their children to hand guns at a young age too. Otherwise, I very well could have been shot. Deep breath, Annie Oakley.
K. explains. The phone call to the parents? Purely random prank call. The reason the phone was busy? They were on the internet. We all had dial up at that time. The reason they were laughing? Because when the police arrived, they didn’t answer the doorbell. So the police kicked in the front door. We didn’t see police cars or kicked in doors because we came in the back. When the police heard no response, they searched rooms. To discover K and B mid-coitus. What was on the internet? Porn.
The only thing worse than being hopped up on adrenaline, playing out a live scene from Hill Street Blues, toting a firearm into a room with two police officers is being a man and wife getting down to your frisky business during a porn bonanza and having two police officers kick your door down and point guns at you.
PS: How awful must it have been to watch porn on DIAL UP?
And then we knew why it was so funny. At least funny to all of us present yet not a bit funny to the parents.
Luckily this story had a good if slightly saucy ending. And I can confirm nothing like this has happened since. I am neither Thelma nor Louise.