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Tuesday, 13 September 2011

image for Ballroom Dancing Tips for Police Officers PC's Wilberforce and Dampgusset during the recent London riots

The life of a police officer can be dreary and unfulfilling. The patrolling of damp, poorly-lit streets, the constant interaction with the dregs of society, the never ending paperwork...It's little wonder that most police officers are regarded by the public as morose and anally focused.

But with the Metropolitan Police's 'Ballroom Dancing Tips for Front Line Officers' programme, the way is open to pass every eight-hour shift in the glamorous world of dance.

Obviously, each individual situation has to be assessed before deciding which type of dance to perform; A four-beat Quick-Step is all very well and good when patrolling wide open spaces, such as industrial estates, but when dealing with a domestic violence incident in a house full of broken furniture, then something like an Argentine Tango is much more appropriate.

One also has to be aware of the uniform that one is wearing at the time. Those officers that wear the traditional Prussian-style police helmet will find difficulty passing under the upraised arm of their partner during fast-paced dances such as the Jive, or Jitterbug. You don't want to make a fool of yourself in public, so a slower more sensual dance would be better. Try a Samba, or a slow Mumba.

Even officers on riot duty, who are weighed down with equipment can enjoy a gentle waltz when not polishing their truncheons or testing the water cannon. And what better than a quick Hokey-cokey when forming a security line during football matches and tedious inner-city riots.

Everyone is catered for - There are even a number of Busby Berkeley routines available for the frogmen of the diving units.

But be aware that there are situations where some forms of ballroom dancing are not appropriate. When working with Police dogs never, ever, attempt to perform a Cha-Cha . The Force's dogs are all trained to attack whenever they see it. Should you find yourself in that situation, make a check-step with the left foot, and immediately launch into an impromptu Charleston. This will normally calm things down.

One last tip: Should you find yourself confronted with an agitated member of the public who is armed, and you find yourself alone with no immediate back-up; don't forget that there is a dedicated channel on each personal radio that you can use in situations like this. (Channel 14). This plays continuous music performed by the National Police College Tea-Dance Ensemble, conducted by Superintendent Roy 'Knacker' Harris. Use the emergency volume output control, and you will soon be Fox-Trotting the offender back to the cells for a good kicking.

Barbara Rhys-Dorking
Civilian Support Officer (Human Resources Department)

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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