Okay so since my beautiful, world-traveling, absolutely fantastic Sissy, Cindy, asked (and because I have nothing else to write). I am going to tell you the F.B. I. story that I mentioned in my previous post (see #23). It’s not very exciting, but I’ll try to at least keep you from falling asleep at your keyboard (try is the key word here folks).
The year was 1999 (holy crap, I’m feeling old), it was the summer before my Senior year of High School. I applied and was chosen to be a Page for the U.S. Capitol. The Congressman who sponsored me was Joe Knollenberg. He was a nice old man, I have a picture of the two of us in front of the capitol (I’d scan it in here and show you, but I’m not sure if that is legal because it was a professional picture and it’s at my Momma’s house). I wrote him a letter saying why I should be a Page and all that and out of the hundreds of applicants in our great state of Michigan (and much to my and everyone’s surprise) he picked little old ME. I wish I had saved a copy of that letter, I would like to read it and see what I wrote.
Basically, I had just won myself an awesome paid summer job. The trip of a lifetime! If you are not familiar with what Pages do you can go here and read all about it, they basically deliver messages between the three legislative buildings. We also did various other jobs. One time I worked in the Cloakroom. Some pages got to raise and lower the Capitol flag and deliver the flags to the Congressmen and Senators for delivery to veterans families and such.
The job I was doing when I had my run in with the F.B.I. was a special one. A select few of the Democratic Pages (I started out on the Republican side, but because there weren’t enough Democratic Pages, volunteered to move over to that side. I am glad I did for I got to do a lot more things because there were so few of us on the Democratic side, whereas there were tons of Pages on the Republican side) were selected to help out in the Library of Congress. This was when the Library was switching over from a card catalog system to an electronic database system. Our job was to take the card, find the book and make sure everything was right, then we entered all the info into a computer. Kind of boring yes, but not really…it was the Library of Congress after-all.
The first day we did this (we were to do it for a week) the lady in charge (I can’t remember her name or her title even, she made a lasting impact can’t you tell?) took us down there. We worked all day and had a break for lunch. The next day we came back and did the same thing. Only it wasn’t the same.
That was the day I was apprehended by the F.B.I.
I had worked the morning like usual. One of my other friends had heard that Don King was going to be at the Capitol that day and we wanted to meet him and get our picture taken with him. So, we had planned to meet at lunch time with a couple of other Pages and go off and find Mr. Don King (this wasn’t a wild goose chase we knew where he was going to be, at least the vicinity).
So, during lunch I ran off with my friend (who happened to be a really cute guy who I had a crush on, sigh. The things we do for love! P.S. He’s the one next to me in the picture.). And we find Don King, and we get our picture taken with him (which I will post because it was taken with MY camera). But in the process I was 1/2 an hour late for reporting back to the Library of Congress (so basically already in trouble). So, I say farewell to my friends and run off frantically trying to come up with some excuse that sounded a lot better than I skipped out so I could meet Don King. I don’t know if it was because I was already freaked out or I just couldn’t remember but I could not get back to the proper floor where I was supposed to be. So, my half an hour late turned into an hour which turned into and hour and a half which turned into two hours of my being completely and hopelessly lost.
Just so you know I asked a dozen different people how to get where I was trying to go, and each one told me a different way which got me even more lost and never to my intended destination. I’m sure it was on purpose, some sort of scare the crap out of the High School kid conspiracy or something.
But, I digress.
On one of my many forays into and out of the elevator I am approached by two very scary, professional-looking people. One is a very tall man in a black suit, the other is a woman with short reddish hair wearing a sort of reddish suit. They stop me and hold up F.B.I. badges and say “Jessica Rushlow? You need to come with us”. Then they take me by the arm and lead me away. Then one of them says in their ear thingy, or they might have called on a cell phone, I’m not quite remembering right, but they say “we have Miss Rushlow in custody”. How I kept from peeing in my nylons I do not know. There is nothing more terrifying than being led away by two F.B.I. agents who are completely silent. I had no idea where they were taking me. It could have been to jail for all I knew. All I was worrying about was how I was going to tell my parents I got arrested for meeting Don King. The other part of me was so thankful that I wasn’t lost anymore and was being taken anywhere where SOMEONE knew where they were going, it was quite relieving even .
They took me to the Office of the Clerk, who is the one in charge of the Page’s . It was then I knew I was in serious trouble. This wasn’t like going to the Principals office, folks, it was worse. I was yelled at and had to explain my whereabouts and threatened with being sent home and jail or even worse– a call to my parents. This was prior to 9/11. I’m sure if this had happened today, it would be a lot different. I’d probably been accused of being a terrorist or something.
So, I did what any girl would do. I cried my eyes out and begged him not to call my parents and please I really was lost and I’ll never do it again just please don’t send me home. I was written up and my parents were not called, which is precisely why my Sister has no idea about this infraction. The scary F.B.I. agents, who weren’t so scary after this, but who were still pretty stone-faced, took me back to the Library of Congress where I finished out my work day.
I had no problem finding it after that.
So, there it is: my run in with the F.B.I. I’m sure I have a file somewhere with it in there. I’ve always wondered how many agents they had out looking for me.
I am glad that they found me, however. For all I know I could still be wandering around D.C. trying to find the Library of Congress.