Tuesday, May 24, 2011


I haven't got the cojones to invent this story and publish it as non-fiction.
It may sound immodest as hell, but, it is what it is, and it is the truth.
It happened this afternoon.

Went to and was treated by my chiropractor. His good health is incorporated into my nightly prayers.
Time for lunch. I am a loyal customer of a sandwich shoppe located in the same strip mall, and make this a frequent visit of a two-parter. Profuse but genuine exchange of friendliness with the owner. A good and decent, hard working, family man. Give me a million more like him.

He took my order and I sat at a table waiting for my pick-up signal. After a minute or two, a young woman delivered my sandwich. She looked to be in her early thirties, well groomed, very gracious and quite attractive.

I was hungry as hell so I dug in, ravenously. Nothing exotic, just a turkey sandwich, with lettuce, tomato and mayo, on a lightly toasted sesame roll. Man, I gotta tell ya, it hit me as the most delicious food I've ever tasted. When I finished, having nursed it down with a diet coke, I had to get another, to go. I returned to the counter and gave my order to the lady.

"You're a judge, aren't you?"
"I was. I'm retired, now."
"But, you were the chief judge of the court, weren't you?"
"Yes. Why do you ask?"
"About ten years ago, I was involved in some trouble and I had to go to court. I couldn't afford a lawyer. I was so frightened, I was shaking and couldn't stop crying. You were the judge. You saw through the whole thing right away. You interrupted what was going on. You just waved your hand and everybody stopped talking. You judged everything on the spot. You told me to calm down, that everything was going to be okay, that I should put this behind me and get whatever help I needed. You threw the case out. You judged everybody. You saw that I was a good person. I kept thanking you, but I never forgot that day. You're a good judge."

She had been very skimpy on the details, and I wasn't about to ask her anything, given the fact that she was emotionally involved in what she was saying, and we were in a public place.

"I'm truly glad things have worked out for you, and that I did what was, obviously, the right thing. What's your name?" She told me. "Mine's Gerry."
"Thank you, Gerry."
"No, thank you, ......"

I took my food and walked to the door. As I was stepping out, I turned and heard her say, to a man with a quizzical look on his face, "That's Judge Alch!"

Believe me, such incidents are rare, so excuse the liberty I take when I savor the DNA of it.
I earned my pay, at least on that day.


  1. Like you said in class – compassion is an essential quality that judges should have. I agree!!