[Fwd: Squeegee Kids Victory]

Graeme Bacque (gbacque@arcos.org)
Wed, 15 Apr 1998 11:40:26 -0400

April 15, 1998

>                       Calgary Sun
>     Squeegee kids rule!
>     Nancy Crevier, pal Mark, Kelly the Goth girl and Jody the
>   windshield washer, are all high- fives, big smiles and well-worn
>   squeegees raised in triumph.
>     No doubt they will soon be playing Skinny Puppy CDs and video
>   games and telling others of the big day.
>     You see, Nancy, the 18-year-old squeegee kid, took her fight to
>   our traffic courtrooms yesterday. And won.
>     Nancy washes windshields at the corner of 17 Ave. and 14 St.
>   S.W., one of the longest lights in the city.
>     Nancy is polite and well-spoken and even a bit shy.
>     Though Nancy's garb and hairdo would not qualify as western
>   wear, she's no threat to this Bliss-on-the-Bow.
>     While you're parked at the red, Nancy will wash your windshield.
>     If you wave Nancy off, she will go away.
>     If you are a tightwad and won't give her some spare change, she
>   will not kick in your headlights.
>     If you want to give money, you can.
>     Nancy tried to get a business licence from the city. They told her
>   to buzz off.
>     Nancy tried to get a chance to speak to city council. She was
>   shut down.
>     Then on one fine February day, the cops, acting on a memo from
>   within their department, slap Nancy with a ticket for soliciting
>   business without a licence.
>     So here we all are, down at the Rocky Mountain Plaza.
>     There's Gentleman Jim Hittel, the hard-working city prosecutor.
>   Our Jim's racked up an impressive record going after ripoff artists
>   and devil-may-care polluters.
>     Hell, he once took on Kazik Kielb, the city's most famous trash
>   collector.
>     But there will be no war story this time.
>     Then there's Jason Walker, the constable who gave Nancy the
>   ticket.
>     This constable from the never-a-dull-moment downtown district is
>   taken away from breaking up brawls, dousing domestic disputes
>   and tracking down thieves.
>     If he'd been off-duty today, his court time would have cost us
>   eight hours of additional pay.
>     The straight-talking constable testifies Nancy confronted no one,
>   wrecked nothing and demanded no money.
>     But Nancy did not have a business licence. So he had to give the
>   violation ticket.
>     Charlie Pester of POINTTS defends Nancy, stepping up to the
>   plate like Mark McGwire slugging another homer out of the park.
>     The ipso factos and prima facies fly round the courtroom over the
>   meaning of soliciting under the law.
>     There is even talk of whether hookers solicit when they lift their
>   dresses and open their blouses.
>     Catherine Skene, the traffic court commissioner, looks poised and
>   most judicial through it all.
>     There is insufficient evidence that Nancy is soliciting business.
>     The charge is dismissed.
>     As Nancy and her buddies pose for pictures and onlookers give
>   thumbs-up salutes and Const. Walker returns to the real battle of
>   the streets, Charlie and me plan a victory orange juice at the Club
>   Cafe.
>     We can still hear Nancy's parting words.
>     "I beat the system but I think they overdid it. I felt like I was a
>   criminal," says Nancy, pledging to return to washing windshields.
>     It's then a comedian within earshot suggests the city's tall
>   foreheads might form a special squeegee task force.
>     We all laugh. Then I think. Don't give them any ideas.

Graeme Bacque
(#2226799 on ICQ)
++Question and challenge *all* human 'authority'++