Monday, July 8, 2013

A dearth of death - that's good right?

Please excuse my long absence, it's been due a combination of busy-ness, laziness, and lack of worthwhile stuff to write about. I'm still busy and lazy, but I realized that a lack of worthwhile stuff to write about has never stopped me in the past.

Now, where was I?  Ah yes, a dearth of death... especially over the 4th of July, well, you'd think that's good every which way. Right?

Not so.

Picture a group of young people interested in law enforcement, wanting to be DAs and cops, or at least know what DAs and cops go through.  It's a summer morning, the Friday after July 4, and a field trip awaits. They've been looking forward to it all week, in a trepidatious kind of way. Most people are taking the day off, of course, but this group heads into work early, making a detour for the Travis County building that contains, among other things, the Medical Examiner's office.

Yes, they signed up to watch an autopsy.

Now, I was invited. My thoughtful and kind office-mate asked me to come along. But a few things you need to know about me: I'm not good with copious amounts of real-time gore. Death makes me sad. I don't ever plan to cut up a body, so I don't need to learn how. I've seen plenty of dead bodies (read about this one? I was riding out with APD and stood feet from her as EMS workers tried to save her, then covered her with a sheet).  So I declined.

A couple of juvie prosecutors went, though, three I think, as well as a handful of interns.

But there was no body.

It's a rare occurrence, apparently, but there were simply no customers for the ME's table that Friday. After all that screwing of their courage to the sticking-place, I gather there was some disappointed. Which was immediately tempered by (a) relief and (b) a twinge of guilt at feeling disappointed that no-one had just died.

The group, I am told, promised the ME they'd return for a future demonstration, and promptly went out to breakfast.

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