Monday, May 18, 2009

I'll have the wheat toast and a cup of mercury

Yesterday morning someone in Hazel Park called the police to report a cup of mercury in a business parking lot. First, I had no idea it was illegal to park in a cup in Hazel Park. I feel like I've dodged a bullet. Second, Ok, exactly how did that conversation go?

911: Emergency, how may I help you?

Caller: Um, I'm in a parking lot in Hazel Park and I'm pretty sure there's a cup of mercury parked right next to me.

911: Is the mercury armed?

Caller: I don't know! Wait! It's moving!

911: Someone is on the way. I'm going to stay on the line with you....

Caller: Thank you. OhmyGodohmyGodohmyGodohmyGod.

911: Do you see the the officers yet?

Caller: Noooooooo! Hurry, please. Please!

Where do you get a CUP of mercury? I remember in science class when the teacher showed us this "scary new life-form" on the overhead projector that seemed to float and eat other life-forms and then it turned out to be mercury. I still don't understand why he showed us that, unless he had some unfulfilled desire to be a magician and this was his one opportunity. Now that I think about it, he WAS wearing a top hat. But he had only the smallest amount of mercury and he kept it under lock and key and I don't think we even knew then how very scary mercury is. So how does someone get a whole cup of it? If you're working at a hardware store and someone buys 400 thermometers wouldn't you file that under suspicious? Wouldn't that be the point where police would be contacted? And why keep it in a cup? It seems like it would be more fun in a Ziploc bag.

And if you've illegally obtained a cup of mercury, how do you accidentally leave it in a parking lot?

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