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September 10, 1998: The Year in Review

Local Police Log

CAMBRIDGE -- Police arrested David Haberstam for impersonating Stanley Milgram, the famous Yale social psychologist who conducted a famous series of "obedience to authority" experiments.

Mr. Haberstam would sit in the Dunkin’ Donuts on Mass. Ave. in Porter Square and request that someone pour hot coffee on a clerk. Mr. Haberstam accepted full responsibility and agreed to assume legal liability for their actions. He demanded that they continue pouring hot coffee on the screaming clerk. He wanted to prove, as did Milgram, that the "fragmentation of the human act" led the average citizen to heinous heights. He assumed they would feel no compunction for burning the clerks with hot coffee because, quite simply, they were told to.

CHELSEA -- Frank Mosely climbed a tree and would not come down. He cried for days, insisting that life in the tree was more correct.

"I don’t have to deal with society’s conventions up here. I don’t have to accept mustard, Chianti, hydraulic systems, or reams of paper as being necessary. I only need this tree and a few branches. Get away. Shoo. Go now. Go."

ASHLAND -- James Dugan, 24, of Oak Street, was arrested by police on Patriots’ Day for capturing dozens of marathoners as they passed through Ashland. Mr. Dugan had dressed up in a Planet of the Apes outfit and responded only to the name Doctor Zaius. He rode around on a horse and threw a heavy fish net on dozens of marathoners. Once captured, he dragged them to his home and put them in a rickety holding pen he had set up in his backyard. He forced them to remove their clothes and gave them skimpy strips of leather and bade them not to speak.

Mr. Dugan will be arraigned in Framingham’s Middlesex Superior Court on May 3.

LEXINGTON -- Nancy Marrapese and Kevin Paul DuPont, staff sportswriters for the Boston Globe, were arrested in Lexington for attempting to enter the annual early-morning reenactment of the famous Battle of Lexington on the Lexington Commons.

While Lexington town officials were glad to have the members of the Globe present, they did not appreciate the reporters’ insistence that the outcome be "different" this time. According to police reports, Ms. Marrapese actually threw a live grenade into the mock battle while Mr. DuPont ran around with a sickle, swinging wildly at horrified onlookers. Luckily, no one was injured.

BOSTON -- Boston police responded to a call from a local restaurant and discovered a bloated white male, unable to move. The man, another faceless white suburbanite, had gone to a number of Chinatown restaurants and gorged himself on an array of foods — a dim sum, if you will — and soon found himself "beached." He panted and moaned but could not get up. The quick-thinking police officers treated the man like a beached whale and continuously poured salt water over his body in hopes of keeping him alive. The Humane Society arrived on the scene and realized that all hope was lost and decided the best thing to do was to destroy him. He was blown up with a stick of dynamite.

BOSTON -- A fire broke out in all of Boston, catching all of Boston on fire. All hell broke loose as everyone and everything caught on fire. Thousands of people were screaming at the same time and the crackle of thousands of buildings and cars burning created this odd and deafening sound of horror and hell. Residents from Cambridge, East Boston, Somerville, and Charlestown watched from across the water, horrified. A few of them made phone calls to check on people and whatnot but they could clearly see what was going on: all of Boston was burning down, at once. There was nothing they could do.

SOUTH BOSTON -- An ancient form of justice was acted out by a group of insurance agents in the name of Oriswicz, the ancient Polish god of actuarial adjustments. The agents admitted to calling upon Oriswicz twice per year to help settle their toughest adjustments.

Police were called to the scene when a suspicious neighbor smelled the tantalizing smells of kielbasa wafting from a gray, four-story office building that houses many Polish insurance agents and accountants. The officers discovered large vats of kielbasa mixed with office paper. According to legend, it seems, the office papers were actually the tough actuarial cases. When Oriswicz smells the concoction he appears, eats the offering, and then sits down and helps the agents with their work.

BOSTON -- Police responded to pictures of pretty girls in a simple educational study.

BOSTON -- A pack of elderly people were arrested for breaking and entering at Mass General Hospital. They were looking to ‘start’ or ‘go’ with staff of the internal medicine department. The pack of elderly people reportedly had been looking to fight with the internal medicine department of MGH for months — and their repeated conventional attempts to challenge them (via phone, fax, e-mail, letter) had gone unanswered.

LEOMINSTER -- An absurd reality existed on Farthington and James streets from 5:03pm to 8:18pm on February 5th. A dog with human emotions and thoughts coughed outside a bakery. A young girl was suddenly Plato and she attempted to gather citizens for an oration. Fish emerged from a pond and became saplings, weary and bent. A small child repeated "Don’t. Don’t. Don’t. . . ."

SOMERVILLE -- The famed "You got two quarters for my nickel?" gang was finally caught in the Reliable Market in Union Square. The Hartford gang was chased out of Connecticut and had reportedly swindled hundreds of people out of 45 since they moved to the Boston area a year and a half ago.

BOSTON -- A disturbed little boy was taken in by Boston police. He was found on the Common behind a bush, yelling, "You shouldn’t push me around." Alarmed, the police found the boy yelling this to a finch. According to a police report, the finch then rested on the boy’s shoulder and the boy seemed "elated." The juvenile stated that he had no formal name, but that he traveled the country with his finch and that they went by the name of "Waggles & Co."

NATICK -- Roger Alberson, 7, was walking on the Hong Kong stock market. He climbed up the volatile market, and didn’t know how to get down. He started to cry.

"Mommy," he wailed.

Mrs. Alberson, Roger’s mom, heard the cry coming from her morning copy of the Wall Street Journal. She flipped it open, and heard the cries getting stronger as she flipped through the NASDAQ and NYSE listings. When she finally reached the international markets, she was stunned to see a half-toned photo of her son, clinging to the 32-point type that read "Hong Kong Market."

The caption under his photo read, "Mommy, help get me down! Help get me down, mommy!"

After many tears from her son, she eventually called the Natick Police, who then called Fidelity Investments at Devonshire Street in Boston. Fidelity announced that they would have the boy down and on an early flight out of Hong Kong. •

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