So, I moonlight as a conflict defender. Keeps me humble and helps me keep my street cred. (LOL) But to be real honest, it’s so much fun because the stories are priceless. Well one day, I had the pleasure of representing “Bubbles” a lady of the night that got picked up in a prostitution sting. She said she was set up by an undercover officer. So, in my pursuit of justice I wanted to get down to the bottom of this. It had been a minute since I had a real motion or a trial and I was getting itchy. I went into the jail in all my black girl magic realness ready to go all Viola Davis on asses.
As I Naomi Campbelled the shit outta the hallway to her cell while humming Queen Bey’s “Formation”, I was abruptly stopped by corrections who warned that I should speak to Bubbles in the booth. I was appalled by his insinuation that I not see my client face to muthafuckin face. The client that is afforded all the rights proscribed by the Constitution of this great nation. I demanded that he allow me to speak to my client face to face and swore all types of Game of Thrones vengeance if I was not allowed to speak to her immediately. Did I mention I was like super adorable that day? As I unleashed a rant I stole from an episode of “The Practice” (Hulu), I saw my reflection in the mirror behind her and I must say…. I was thoroughly pleased with all this legal diva prowess I was exuding so early in the morning. (flips hair)
The corrections officers noticed my emergent vanity and chuckled and said “Well by all means Miss Attorney Mercy… I will show you to your room” Feeling vindicated about all this constitutional realness, I Oliva Pope the shit outta my walk to the room. (flips hair again) it took everything in me not to snap like Aunt Viv in the dancing episode. But I quickly realized it would only diminish the Auntie Maxine vibes I was perpetuating this morning. When the corrections officer opened the door, he signaled the other officers and they all chuckled and snickered. Now I’m pissed and made a mental note to roll my eyes at each and every one of them when I leave out.
I set up my end of the table and got ready for my client. You would have thought she was charged with insider trading or treason the way I set up shop. Then she walked in. She was so scared, she hesitated to come into the room asking Corrections if she was being audited or was her charge being upgraded to a federal crime. I smiled and said, “no ma’am, I am here to represent you… Ms.” She interjected “Just call me bubbles.” “Then Bubbles its shall be”, I responded. The door behind her was shut and she proceeded to sit really close to me. And that’s when I realized that Bubbles had no concept of personal space. Apparently if she could sit in my lap she would. I kept inching away to provide some level of comfort to no avail. I am not a doctor but I was pretty sure she lived with a perpetual yeast infection. But she just kept coming closer, so I just ended up putting my bag between us and made up a lie saying that it’s against policy for her to be on my side of the table and she said, “Yes sure” and agreed to move.
Now with this “Yes sure” all the events that had transpired prior to me coming to speak to her made perfect sense. When her mouth moved to allow sounds from her throat and came past her lips to form words it all immediately made sense. With that hard “Y” sound, I was inundated with a mist of funk that I can and will never forget. I was amazed on how the smell that haunted her oral cavity did not erode her face like sulfuric acid. I speculated on how much uneaten food particles found their way in her mouth for decomposition. I was left speechless (for those who know me know this is a big deal) by the putrid smell that resurrected from her mouth, permeated the room in a direct line to my face like a laser beam. My eyes watered. I had to wipe my glasses to clear the condensation that formed as a direct result of the stench coming out of Bubble’s body. I looked outside to see corrections double over in sheer merriment at my self-inflicted state of affairs.
However, as a professional, I vowed to give her justice and justice she shall have. So, I only breathe when I looked down. I began fake sneezing so I could buy relief from the inner lining of my suit jacket. But Bubbles had several speech impediments. I identified a lisp and a stutter. In my non-expert opinion, I believe they probably manifested as a result of her only having 4 fully adult teeth in her mouth. I believe it made for a great asset in her profession, however proved difficult when communicating, which made the interview all the more gut wrenching. And then it happens……….
Bubbles said, “Dem officers are Soooooo full of Shit Miss Mercy” I saw a lil spittle come from her mouth and soar past my notebook and land on the left corner of my chin. Convinced I have chin AIDS I quickly concluded the interview. Trying hard not to make “any sudden movements” in an effort to thwart any activation of whichever dormant disease. I ran to the restroom and squirted a whole travel size bottle of hand sanitizer on the bottom of my face while humming an old negro spiritual. I had to call on the Lord.
I was summoned by the judge to participate in her preliminary hearing. In which I was greeted with her whole criminal history. I had to hear that she became a lady of the night in her early teens and at the ripe age of 63 she still calls the street her home. I began to wonder that “the spit from a mouth that has had random penises in and out of it since Ford’s Presidency was now setting up shop on my face” I quickly became faint. I had to watch undercover footage of my client describing how good her head was because she only had four teeth. I had to endure her describing performing Fellatio to as many as 10 men in a night. “Jesus take the wheel” because my chin felt funny. I was successful at the preliminary hearing and Bubbles was free to live her life. I on the other hand was convinced that the chin AIDS. When my WebMD search proved inconclusive. I self-diagnosed and concluded that I only had a few days to live.
I drove directly to urgent care and prepared for the worst. I told the nurse of my trials and tribulations and she left and brought what seemed like the whole staff to listen to my harrowing story of pain in the search for justice. They all laughed at me. I insisted that someone make an incision and cut off that section of my face (because I’m a lawyer and that’s actually an option) She told me to calm all the way down and ran some tests. Doctor came back with the results and confirmed that I did not have Chin AIDS and/or legionnaire disease. I still went back a few weeks later and got another series of test just to confirm.
All in all, a hard lesson had been learned…. listen to corrections when wanting to speak with clients charged with prostitution AND have hand sanitizer EVERYWHERE!!!!!! Happy Friday!!