A patrol with a great team, the GLA, Part 1

Saturday I headed north to patrol with some of my teammates of the Great Lakes Alliance. First, I headed to a medium-size college town where Blue and Misery White reside. Blue had planned a drop-off at a food shelf that closed at 11:30 a.m., so time was an issue. My drive was about an hour, but thanks to taking a turn that my GPS didn’t recommend, I had to do some high speeds on some dusty gravel roads to get back on track. Too bad the car had just been washed. Oh well… Only I can get lost with a Garmin.
I wasn’t too late and when I arrived at their apartment, I knew that it was the right one because there was a Spider-Man doormat at the base of the stairs leading up to their place.
Blue was all geared up and ready to go. Miz offered me some homemade chocolate chip cookies. I rarely eat cookies and find sweets easy to resist, but these were wonderful and I had to have more. I was quickly addicted. (Gotta get that recipe.) I was partly in-gear and finished off the rest pretty quickly. It was hot that day. Really hot. I didn’t even consider wearing the coat. It was Geist-lite weather. As I awkwardly worked on putting on the gauntlets / bracers, Blue offered to help me. I kind of overreacted and said “No!” a little too loud. I said, “I’m sorry, Man. But this is part of the ritual for me. This is me getting in the right mind-set to prepare myself for what we’re about to do. This is what I need to do on my own to be a better person. The best person I can possibly be.” Which isn’t saying much, because in regular life, I can be kind of a jerk and I know it. But a step up is still a step up, y’know?
Blue had a huge box of groceries that he and Miz had stockpiled and I had a couple of bags of the type of food that can go a long way. Blue and I headed out, leaving Miz to attend to other things. It was time for some guy-talk. Blue had a lot of questions about how I’ve been. He worries a lot. He’s a good friend. He doesn’t need to worry about me, but he does anyway. We swapped some stories and advice on the way to the food shelf.
When we got there, there was a nice lady arranging and stacking things. Like a lot of Minnesotans, she didn’t seem too shocked to see two costumed goofballs carrying loads of food. If I remember right, she asked if we wanted a receipt and we said, “No, we’re Real-Life Superheroes.” She said, “I thought so! I think I’ve seen you in the Star Tribune.”, indicating to me. Which is odd, because I don’t think I’ve ever been in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. We headed back to Blue’s and Miz’s place for a fantastic lunch with them and Miz’s very hip, smart and cool teenage daughter.
Then Blue had some training for me. We went out to the yard with Miz’s daughter and between the the two of them, they demonstrated some escort, handcuff and takedown tactics while allowing me to inflict a lot of pain on Blue. Good times… And good info from Blue, who clearly knows what he’s doing in the field, despite his regressive, but charming sense of humor.
We hit the road to meet up with Razorhawk. In RH’s driveway, we spent some time chatting, dispelling superhero gossip and experiencing the increasing Minnesota heat. Did I mention it was hot?
We got to Minneapolis in the mid-afternoon and went to a family shelter, People Serving People, where we dropped off toys and huge stacks of comics for the kids, clothing, and a bag of books that was in my trunk. I didn’t know what the books were doing in my trunk, but figured that they were donatable. More on that later. The security guard recognized us from previous visits. That’s always nice.
Then, we immediately headed to a known homeless camp under a bridge. There was no one there, but Misery White left some nice donations for when they would return. She also had some very cool fliers made up of the phone numbers and locations of various social services in Minneapolis. She continued to pass these out throughout the day. What a great idea!
From there, we walked to areas we hadn’t been before. It was daylight and we had people honking, waving, cheering and asking us about ourselves. And then, Miz said, “Geist!” And I turned back to see that two police cars had rolled up on us. The cops were getting out in a hurry. I stammered something that might have come out like, “Hi.” Misery stepped forward and cheerily said, “Hello, officers! How are you?” At that point, they said, “Fine, thank you.” and walked through the door to the diner that we happened to be standing next to. THEY WERE TAKING A BREAK FOR LUNCH.  Razorhawk said, “Y’know, sometimes I think we’re all too paranoid.
(To be continued.)