I answered the phone and my girlfriend Kay was on the other end.
“Hi. Joanna and I are thinking about going out and having some dinner and a couple of drinks at the Lost Dutchman, would you like to go with us?”
I was living in a duplex with my younger sister and her three year old son. My boyfriend had just moved to Southern California to go to work for the railroad and I was waiting until he went through his training in Dunsmuir before I moved down to join him. A night away from my sister and her kid sounded like fun.
“Sure. What time?”
“Joanna is coming over at four and I’m going to cut her hair which will only take about half an hour. Come over whenever you want to. We will probably be ready to leave the house by five thirty or six.”
Kay used to be a hair dresser before her husband was killed in a car wreck by an insane guy who crossed the centerline and hit Ray and Kay in attempt to commit suicide. Of course he was barely hurt and the steering wheel crushed Ray’s chest and he died the next day and Kay broke her pelvis. She bought herself a baby blue firebird six months later after her body had recovered enough from the accident she could drive again.
Kay had always been small, small boned and small busted, and after she was back on her feet again she decided to have breast augmentations to give herself a much needed ego boost, at least that’s what she told me. Ray had been the love of her life and she was totally crushed when she lost him. She wasn’t healed yet but she was determined to move forward for her daughter’s sake. Her sister Joanna was going through a divorce and was in an anti-man frame of mind. We just wanted to go out and have a girl’s night out with just us girls.
“That sounds good. I’ll be over before five.”
Kay only lived about ten minutes from my house and the restaurant and bar we were going to was only ten minutes away from Kay’s. We hadn’t seen each other for a couple of months. Joanna and I both worked full time and our two days off weren’t the same very often. Kay was still recovering from the accident and had her six year old daughter to take care of. Her name was Keila.
I went over to the house and when I got there Kay was just finishing up Joanna’s hair. Their youngest sister, Ronda was already over there so she could watch Keila while we went out.
I wore black jeans and a silk blouse and Kay and Joanna also wore jeans along with brightly colored tops. We weren’t dressed to impress, we just to look acceptable, we each had our own reasons for not wanting to draw attention to ourselves.
It was a Saturday night and we got were there early enough that we were able to get a parking spot in the second row in the lot across the street. The small restaurant was already full so we ate at a table in the bar. That was fine with us. We had a lot of catching up to do with each other’s lives.
We treated ourselves to steak and lobster. We almost never went out so this was a big event. I was the youngest person at 24, Kay was 28 and Joanna was 26. Kay and I were both about the same height, and after her surgery we both had about the same figures, 110 pounds with curves, I was a blonde and she was a brunette. Joanna was tall and leggy with beautiful dark blonde hair, I think it was bottle blonde but who cared. We were all pretty attractive women.
There was a local band playing at the bar that night and we knew the gal that was the lead singer as well as the lead guitar player. They were really good and we were looking forward to hearing them play.
The band played good rock and roll cover songs, the year was 1980 and they specialized in rock and roll from bands like the Hollies, Bad Company, Boston and Aerosmith. We were so busy talking and visiting with each other we hadn’t noticed that several guys had sat down at a large table next to us and were loudly trying to get themselves noticed. Since we weren’t there to pick up guys we didn’t pay much attention to them. They finally started asking us to dance with them and we kept turning them down telling them we were just there to visit and listen to the music.
They were not taking no for an answer very well and kept on bugging us. A couple friends of the band, who were also friends of ours, came over to our table and visited a little while and they talked us into dancing with them. We did. After we did that the guys who had been sitting next to us, who had kept bugging us to dance, were getting even more aggressive. They thought we were dissing them because we danced with our friends and wouldn’t dance with them.
Finally, just to get them to leave us alone, we agreed to dance to a couple of songs with several of them. We did and it was fun but though we said that was all we were interested in doing they started to get even more obnoxious. They were insulted because we weren’t interested in them.
We had been at the bar long enough we decided to just leave to get away from the constant verbal harassment we were getting. It seemed easier to just leave. We hadn’t been successful in making them understand we weren’t there to pick up guys so it was better just to go home.
We walked across the street and got in Kay’s firebird. She was driving and I was in the passenger seat and Joanna got in the back seat.
Just after she started up the car Kay looked in the rear view mirror.
“What the hell?” She said and I looked behind her car and a big four wheel drive truck was parked right behind her. Two of the guys who had been harassing us got out of the truck and started walking over to her side of the car. Her window was down. One of the guys stood next to the back of the car and the other one reached in the window and tried to put his hand on Kay’s hair. She had automatic windows, I know all cars have them now, but in 1979 this was one of the first cars any of my friends had with automatic windows. Kay was fast on the control because she had the window zipping up just to catch his arm at the elbow.
“Ouch, you have my arm in the window!” The man yelled.
“No shit, pull it out and I’ll open it.” Kay responded.
As he did as she told him she barely lowered it and quickly raised it back up. We looked all around and the only way to get out of there was to back up until she was up against their truck and then turn the wheel sharply and drive over the front curb.
Fortunately the car on the other side of the parking place had already left so there was a space to go to so she quickly backed up “You ran over my foot,” the guy who was standing by the rear of the car yelled and then she shifted into a forward gear.
“Then you should move.” We all yelled at him simultaneously.
Kay revved her car up enough to get it to hop up the front curb and then she raced out of the parking lot while the assholes all loaded up into the truck and whatever other vehicle they had there. Kay flew around the corner where she quickly headed for the police station that was only a couple of blocks away.
Apparently, and not surprisingly, they took a while to get moving so after we sat there for ten minutes she cautiously took a back route back to her house and parked in the garage.
We ran in to the house and kept looking out the window for a while to see if they had managed to follow us. They hadn’t. She lived off the main road so the odds that the creeps would find us were very slim.
I couldn’t believe those jerks. We tried to be nice and dance with them after they had such a fit because we danced a couple of times with our friends. Then they wouldn’t take no for an answer. We weren’t teasing them in any way. We weren’t there to pick anyone up, only to have a good time.
Joanna and I spent the night in Kay’s spare room and the next morning we got up and made breakfast and sat around visiting with Ronda drinking coffee.
There was a knock at the door and Keila answered it.
“Mom, there is a policeman here.”
Kay went to the door.
“Is this your firebird parked in the driveway?”
“We got a complaint last night that It was involved in a hit and run accident.”
“You’ve got to be kidding.” Kay answered him.
“Early this morning a man reported your car hit his truck and drove off and he gave your license plate number.”
“Are you referring to the jerk at the bar last night? Yeah I hit him, after he and his buddies tried to block me from leaving. Come in the house and I’ll tell you what really happened, I have two witnesses that were with me last night.” Kay was pissed off.
The policeman came in the house and took Joanna and my statements. We could tell he believed us. After we were done telling him what really happened he inquired if we wanted to press charges.
“It sounds like you should be charging him for this incident. Do you want to?”
“No. We looked at the car last night and I hit him with my bumper and I can’t see any damage. If he wants to report a hit and run we will report a physical attack and possibly an attempted rape, but only if we have to.”
“Well that sounds like that might have been a possibility. I am going to go visit the man who called this in and if he doesn’t drop the charges I will be back in touch with you. I have a feeling he will after I tell him what you three women have told me. You should have gone into the police station last night and reported him.”
“Unlike these creeps, we didn’t want to do anything but go home.”
“I understand that but if they had chased you down something much worse could have happened. Also they might do it to someone else.” This was the earnest response of the policeman.
“That’s why we waited at the station long enough that we felt like they didn’t follow us. It never occurred to us they took our license plate number down while they were so busy harassing us. It was a good thing it was late at night and they couldn’t get ahold of anyone to track down the license number.”
“I want all three of you to sign a short statement of what happened and I will talk to the man who called in the hit and run and tell him you have charged him with harassment and I am pretty sure that will be the end of this.” The officer was getting pretty worked up over the false crime he had been sent there to investigate.
He left and it sure was a good thing this happened back before the computer era or we might have had to worry about those creeps tracking us down. That was the end of this episode but I have come to think of it as a very lucky break for the three of us that Kay was able to get away in her car. I have no doubt something worse could have happened had we not have managed to get out of that parking lot.
We hoped the men got a scare in being told that they were going to be prosecuted for harassing us women but it was a real and scary situation that fortunately didn’t have a bad ending. Those guys got what they deserved by way of the policeman telling them we were going to prosecute for harassment but the ending could have been a lot worse.