After overhearing an ‘outraged taxpayer’ give off about him buying food in a Lurgan supermarket, a local police officer has issued a detailed response on being tired and hungry.
While he was standing in the queue at the ‘well known supermarket’ to buy some ready meals, the policeman overheard a man saying ‘stuffing their faces AGAIN’.
The PSNI officer said after a few days he felt the need to respond and point out some of the realities of working in the police.
On the PSNI Craigavon Facebook, he wrote an open letter to the ‘outraged taxpayer’.
“Dear irritable tax payer in well known supermarket in Lurgan...
“After an incident a couple of days ago, I feel it is only right to make some public confessions.
“Having left the house not long after 8am, and aware that it would be around 1am when I got home, weakness set in around 5pm and I’m ashamed to say I was overcome by....hunger.
“Now I know what you’re thinking, “how dare he?!” Sadly, my willpower was severely lacking and so, taking a few minutes in between calls, I found myself drawn to the ready meal aisle.
“It was a time of unbearable weakness I am ashamed of.
“It was whilst making my way to the till with my ‘3 for 2’ to set me up for the next couple of shifts (Carbonara, Thai red curry and Kung Po chicken by the way) that the by now outraged tax payer stepped forward and uttered, “Tsk, stuffing their faces AGAIN!” What a hero. Taking a stand for the people.
“I could tell, behind the dozens of smiles, waves, introductions to their children and friendly greetings that we got from others in the same store, everyone was thinking the same thing...or not.
“If you are that gent and you are reading this, yes, I did hear you. I chose the ‘pretend not to hear’ option as if I’d responded, I was at that stage of tiredness and hunger that I may have said something that you would have made a complaint about to try and have me disciplined.
“It got worse for the tax payer that day too. I’d taken a 2 litre bottle of water with me in the car and I’m ashamed to say that I was still on duty when I went for a pee not once, but twice. I’ll never forgive myself.
“Yes, we eat on duty. No, we don’t get “meal breaks”. Even when we do get time to sit down, if the radio goes, we go. No operational cop, fire fighter or paramedic in the country can’t remember a meal they had to let go cold because of a call coming in.
“We frequently buy locally as for a start, supporting local jobs and business is a good thing, and secondly, I’ve never been in uniform in a premises that’s been robbed. We don’t get dedicated poo breaks either. Now imagine the rather rushed logistics if the radio goes then! Yes, IT happens.
“We don’t ask for thanks for it, nor do we ask to bunk queues for it. All we ask is that it’s understood as HUMAN needs. The vast majority get it, but for the thankfully diminishing few who still seem to expect their police to leave all human bodily functions in the locker room - catch a grip. Watch IRobot if that’s what you’re looking for. It doesn’t end well.
“So to all my blue light colleagues around the country who may be reading this whilst enjoying a quick bite to eat or a brew- cheers! Enjoy it. You don’t know when the next one will be. In fact you don’t even know if there will be a next one.”