A long time ago, in a place kept very secret, a department big-wig had a brilliant idea: Send all the recruits from the police academy out on the street before they had sworn powers.

Armed with an antiquated radio larger than a house brick and weighing just as much, recruits were dropped off in various districts with maps and a list of liquor license locations. The goal was to check each liquor license in the taverns, hotel bars and restaurants on the list to ensure they were up-to-date. What could go wrong?

Officer Murphy was teamed-up with Officer Bob, a happy-go-lucky recruit on a frame of 6 ft. 4 inches. They were dropped off in the 14th district and directed to take public transportation back to the district when they completed their assignment.



Armed with their plan, they zipped through the first major portion of the list, checking every license and doing so with professionalism and courtesy. They skipped lunch in order to get a jump on their assignment. They had no issues and were pleasantly surprised with the compliance, even in the run-down, skanky-looking taverns. All licenses were current: food, entertainment, liquor and packaged goods.

They were finished with their list with the exception of one very high-end restaurant. Their plan: this was where Murphy and Bob planned to eat lunch. The restaurant was not open to the public, yet.


After knocking on the front door, the two police recruits were met by the owner. Explaining their intentions, they walked into the lavish dining area. They were promptly and respectfully shown to a secluded table where they were joined by the owner’s attorney, who coincidentally, happened to be visiting.

They had created a routine for themselves:  they planned to refuse any alcoholic drinks offered until they had checked the legitimacy of all licenses. Then, and only then, would they enjoy a cold one on a hot day.



This restaurant was up-scale and the nicest establishment they have been in all day. They fully expected total compliance. It was then that they veered off their meticulous plan. They graciously accepted a cold beer when it was first offered.

With a couple of hours to kill, they were prepared to enjoy the spoils of their fast-paced work and ride out the remainder of their shift right there.

Sipping a cold beer, waiting for the owner to return with the licenses, life was good.  Bob leaned back with a huge smile across his face. “So, this is what it’s like to be the real police,” he thought to himself.

The owner returned and handed Murphy a short stack of business licenses for his examination. All the while, Bob sipped his beer while making small talk with the young attorney.



After a few moments, a look of confusion and shock came to Murphy’s face. He scribbled note and passed it to Bob. The liquor license was expired by two days. Oh, Shit!

Talking in a calm and reasoned voice, Murphy explained to the owner that his liquor license was expired. The owner was surprised and apologetic. The liquor license had expired the previous day, an apparent oversight.

Murphy explained that this development would prevent the owner from opening his business until he renewed the license.

The owner remorsefully explained that this was simply an oversight. The attorney would depart immediately for City Hall and renew this important license.

The owner further explained that there was a large wedding party booked which he expected to arrive in that evening. Murphy saw that it was too late in the day for the attorney to make good on the renewal so he accepted the owner’s solemn promise to get the license the very next day.



Then, they heard those glorious words, “Have you two officers eaten yet?”

Sitting at a table covered in white linen, Murphy and Bob perused the mouth-watering menu. They settled on an exquisite meal, accompanied by an aged bottle of red wine, followed by another.

Gun belts and radio now resting comfortably on the floor, a third bottle of red was opened. Soon, the bar portion of the restaurant opened and two nurses just off their shift, sat down to enjoy an after-work beverage.

Coincidently, the restaurant owner returned to the table asked if there was anything else that he could provide for the officers’ entertainment. Murphy nodded toward the nurses and blurted out, “Those nurses.” To his astonishment, the owner spoke to the beauties in white and soon the nurses were seated at the table enjoying a glass of red imported from Italy.



After a few more drinks and a very generous tip, the party was moved to one of the nurse’s nearby condo. The party continued just a short while before Murphy and Bob realized they were still working. So, off the two recruits went, travelling by CTA bus, back to the 14th district police station.

Walking arm in arm up the front stairs of the station for fear they would fall over if they let go of each other. They were greeted by the desk sergeant, who shouted over his shoulder to the watch commander,

“The kids have returned. “



Unbeknownst to the happy recruits, they were over an hour late returning to the district. The on-duty deputy had been notified of the missing recruits and the watch commander had the district’s tactical team retracing their route, searching for them.


The embarrassed and irate home room sergeant from the academy ordered the two recruits into the nearby interrogation room.  He was in the midst of threatening them with a complaint registered number for drinking while on duty, along with the possibility of being fired.



At just that moment, the door opened and in walked the watch commander. He looked at squarely at the sergeant and said, “They’re just kids.”

He looked at the recruits with the goofy smiles and ordered them to go directly home. The field deputy was notified that the lost recruits were returned and safe. He guessed correctly. It was recruits being recruits. No harm. No foul.

Monday morning’s coffee at the police academy had a really juicy topic of discussion. Other than a bunch of laughs and a few smirks and giggles, caper closed.

To all my brothers and sisters in blue, lock and load and protect each other. And as always, stay safe.


 “Above all, it’s about going home at the end of the shift … “

We couldn’t agree more.



Larry enjoys hearing from his readers – EMAIL

View Larry Casey’s website at and review his book by the same name.

Cartoon compliments of Steve Burnett, Sun Mesa Studios,

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