Works in the Herald 1922

Scene: A Suburban Police Station.

Through the front gate enters a man. he knocks at the door, the bell being out of order -- as it is a police station. A lady appears in answer to the knock.

Man: Have you such a thing as a policeman about here?

Lady: Well, er have -- that is -- we HAD.

Man: Had?

Lady: Well, you see, my husband, who is in charge, is unwell and his assistant is away on holiday.

Man: I wish to be arrested. I'm wanted by the police; and I'm sick of hiding around Collins street for so long.

Lady: Excuse me a moment. I'll see my husband.

(Lady retires, and, after an interval, returns.)

Lady: Awfully sorry. My husband is in a high fever. He's afraid he might have something that's catching and that would never do - for a policeman. However, he wants to know what you are being hunted for.

Man: Well, to be perfectly frank, I murdered a man a week ago.

(Lady retires, and, after a further interval, returns.)

Lady: My husband suggests that, as this is only a branch office, your case cannot be dealt with here. Perhaps you had better go to Russell Street.

Man (looking at his watch): Well, I have a lunch appointment; and -

Lady: My husband would be glad to advance you your tram fare if he had sufficient evidence that you are a murderer; but he is not quite sure.

Man: Well, I suppose I should not be too exacting.

Lady: If you care to wait a while perhaps a police car may be going by. They would pick you up and --

Man: I'm sure you are very kind, but I'm afraid I can't spare the time.

Lady: of course, you could ring up one of the other suburban police stations; but I'm afraid all their 'phones are out of order.

Man: Can you do anything to help me?

Lady: I'm only a woman. But I'd arrest you myself, just to oblige you, only that might get me in trouble with the Policemen's Union.

Man, As it is, I'm sorry to have given you this trouble.

Lady: Don't mention it. I wish I could ask you to have a glass of beer; but I can't. Some burglars broke in here last night and took the lot.

The Mooch of Life
Herald, 8 June 1922, p6

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2003