Fly The Friendly Skies

This is Officer Lee Groinman. That's right, Seattle's Toughest Cop. So, you've missed me? Yeah, like you'd miss a root canal! In fact, that reminds me. Did ya' hear that 7 out of 10 Seattle area Dentists now prefer the Groinman Dental Plan? That's right fella'! 18 inches of polished black, heat-treated, laser beam honed, Tennessee Hickory stick, right between those "hard-to-reach" molars pal!

Ah 'tis nearly the season!

It was one of those perfect summer evenings, just before dark, some folks call this twilight. The sky is awash in purple, pink, and gold. I'm out back in my white plastic lawn chair, sippin' on one of those Best beers from Milwaukee. The yellow whirly-bird sprinkler is ticklin' my toes with cool, clear water.

I'm contemplating the utter blessing and joy of being so easily amused. This thought just tickles my fancy.

George Dubya. I hear ya' man!!!

That thought was quickly put into the round file when Rocky, my 150-pound Malamute, attempted to slam-dunk this fresh skunk on my lap! You know, an ‘in-your-face-take-this daddy-o' act! You see this sort of behavior in the NBA quite often.

Rocky has now taken a commanding lead in the skunk count. Not to mention that familiar "air" about him.

Rocky 3, Groinman 1, and I use a .410. Rocky thinks skunks are some kind of Western Wolverine. I don't tell him no different.

The wife, Gloria sticks her head out and yells. "Lee, you better come in now, you've got a e-mail from Timmy, marked URGENT!"

Timmy? I wonder if Lassie's in trouble and has fallen down a well.

OH, TIMMY!! Little Timmy, my bookie from Reno! By Dawg he's late this year with the spreads!

Yes, Groinman likes to play the odds, so don't go tellin' my captain or I'll have to wash the paddy wagon for the next year.

GLORIA! Grab me another one of those Best's and get a load of this! Timmy is getting married and wants me to be the BEST MAN! Getting married for the first time, and at his AGE!!

"Timmy getting married, how odd. Who would marry Timmy?" asks Gloria.

I have to warn her to be careful because a lot of people asked that very same question about one Lee Groinman.

Timmy's email says no Tux's, just wear your Sunday Best suit, that's good, I'll just go dust off that ol' blue pin-stripe and . . . .

"Lee, I'm sorry babe. Your blue pin-stripe, well, well it shrunk dear," said Gloria, trying not to laugh.

Huh? How does something that hasn't seen the light of day in 10 years shrink?

Well, a trip down to Auburn to see ol' George at the Men's Warehouse is in order. Haven't seen him since I gave him that ticket for jay walking. Well, jay running, really. It was a windy day and he was chasing his toupee across the street and ol' Groinman was there on horseback. Had to do it. I was relieved to find him NOT in the store when I traipse in.

"So listen up Paul," I tell the salesperson.

"It's Pierre sir."

Very well, Peter. It says on the radio that you fellas will press this suit.

"That is correct sir!"

Yeah, well Pete, I'm goin' to Reno, Best man in a wedding, can't be lookin' like an over ripe black olive!

"See Raymond in Reno, here's his number, it's just blocks from the airport sir!"

Mission accomplished.

So being that this was a wedding and all, I couldn't use Priceline, had to go first cabin. Travelocity. Booked me a flight on Alaska. Now whenever Groinman takes a flight, I usually sit next to a smelly fat guy or a screaming kid.

An attractive young lady grabbed the seat next to ol' Groinman. Lady luck was shining on Seattle's toughest cop this time?

I should've known better.

Midway thru the flight, this young Lady, why she nudges my arm, and says, quite frankly really, "Sir, look, we are on a 737B series, and according to this pamphlet. Alaska only has one, and it's coming into service in late summer. This could be the maiden flight! Do you think this to be so?"

Oh no. Why Hell no there, lass. Why they would have made a big deal out of a maiden flight! Why we'd be sippin' champagne, eatin' peanuts. The works!! Besides miss, you never want to be on a MAIDEN FLIGHT!! Oh no, no, no. Trust me. I was on a maiden flight once, once to Oakland, never, never, again, never.

But let me tell you this. A funny thing happened on our approach to the Reno airport, the tires had just touched down when a tremendous gust of wind picked up the right side of the aircraft! Things are flying, people are screamin'! The nose veers to the right! I'm lookin' at pavement! We are in a crab-crawl! The pilot over compensates! Left side UP!! I give the seat in front of me this big ol' bear hug.

Not that Groinman is a-fearing one bit. Just checking' those BOLTS!!

The pilot regains CONTROL!! Wild cheers go UP!! You would've thought that Bob Rondeau just shouted TOUCHDOWN WASHINGTON!

Passenger's we're somewhat pleased, and some were kind of messy as we deplaned.

There's Timmy at the gate, bucket full of quarters. Yep. I'm in Reno.

"Lee! Thanks for coming, it's good to see you! And the Public Address system just announced that this was a maiden flight! How cool is that!"

Uh huh.

"Look Groinman, all we've got is 24 hours, all you've got to do is keep me occupied, busy, ya know, keep me on course, out of trouble."

Timmy you came to the right man.

"But first Lee, I gotta go pick up my suit, it's at the Men's Warehouse."

Holy Crapes Timmy! Take a left on Alexandria, Raymond's our man!

On the drive over Groinman's got an idea. We could do a radio commercial for that warehouse guy, George.

"Hi George, my name is Timmy, a bookie by trade. I spend a lot of time in front of computers and sports pages, naturally, most of my boxer's had cigar burns in them. Well I was getting married on Saturday and your man Raymond set me up, ya know, big time, socks, boxer's, spender's, the works. George, I can't thank you enough, but what about the difference between weekend and business casual."

George's reply would be, "Thanks Timmy, you're going to love the way you look. I'm George Zimmer, and you have my word on it. And good luck with that wedding!"

Lookin' at Timmy and me in the mirror, I was thinkin' ZZTOP, who said it best:

"Every girl's crazy 'bout her Sharp Dressed Man."

As Groinman's luck would have it, Reno would not turn out to be from a ZZTOP fantasy but rather from a Warren Zevon tune instead.

"Send Lawyers, Guns, and Money."


Timmy's Odds in Reno:

Dawgs to win the BCS: 35-1
Dawgs to win Pac 10: 3-1
Dawgs and Michigan: take the cash! Top Stories