It was a summer afternoon when I was dispatched to a non-injury collision on the west side of the city. It was just past 6PM and the call information made it sound like a simple traffic collision. When I pulled up, both drivers were standing by their cars in a residential area just off the main highway. Both vehicles had minor damage from the rear end collision. One car had its hood pushed up a little bit and its front bumper damaged. The other vehicle’s rear bumper was slightly damaged.
The first driver, who we will call Tom, was 19 years old and looked like a hippie from the late 60’s. He had brown shoulder length hair that was unkempt and parted down the middle. He also had round prescription glasses and a mustache that were right out of the hippie handbook. I was just surprised he wasn’t driving the Mystery Machine from Scooby-Doo.
After checking to make sure there were no injuries, I asked Tom what happened. He started to tell me how he had been driving northbound on the street when he rear ended the other vehicle. As Tom told me his story, a strong odor of alcohol was blown toward me by the afternoon breeze from his body. It was about as powerful as a fart in an elevator on a hot and humid day. While I spoke with him, I noticed his eyes were a little droopy and he had a slower than normal speech pattern. Tom had rear ended the other vehicle so I figured he was possible a DUI driver. I focused my questions toward that direction and asked him what he had to drink.
He denied drinking, so I asked Tom what was the odor that I smelled. He replied, “Deodorant.” I told Tom that there was something other than deodorant and I asked him again how many beers he had to drink today. Tom was adamant he had not been drinking. I again told him the odor I smelled wasn’t deodorant.
Tom hesitantly said, “It’s Lysol.”
Tom went on to say, “I put Lysol on.”
I was now curious why someone would put Lysol on their body. Since people usually tell me crazy stuff, I decided the Lysol part of this story was much more important than this silly crash. I asked, “You sprayed it on?”
“No, it was Lysol wipes,” as he pointed to his armpits. He then explained, “I wiped first and then sprayed deodorant on.”
Tom then told me he doesn’t take a shower sometimes and his mother gave him the Lysol wipes to help freshen up. I couldn’t resist, so I asked Tom when he last took a shower. Tom thought about it for a moment and then started to say three, but then said, “Two days.” I asked Tom why he didn’t just take a shower instead of using the Lysol Wipes. He told me he was in college and he was busy. I pointed out to Tom I used to go to college and I still managed to take a shower every day. I asked Tom if he had ever used baby wipes. He said he had, but he didn’t like them. I asked Tom if a Lysol wipe was something that should be used on the body. He replied it probably wasn’t.
I then started to wonder if Tom was a few cards shy of a full deck. I explained to him why I had asked so many questions about what he had to drink. Tom was very nice about it and told me he understood. One of the last things he told me was that it was embarrassing to tell people he used Lysol. Really?
I figured it was time to ask him about the collision again because I wasn’t sure what other household cleaning products were going to come up. T.M.I.
Just another normal day at work.